Laundry Hanging in A Modern World

In a world of modernity, where cities are full of tall skyscrapers and seven-floor apartment buildings with fancy cafes, it’s hard to remember that there is an old touch to things. Paradoxically, if you’re a nostalgic person, it’s hard to not go looking for that old touch.
Around a week ago, I was walking to the unknown parking spot for my university’s taxis early in the morning when I spotted an old house surrounded by a modern apartment building that leads to the almost all-modern city of Ramallah. I always see this one-floor home, and there is usually an old woman sitting on a couch outside watching people pass by. This time, however, I saw a woman wearing a headscarf hanging laundry on slim, plastic covered wires, each piece attached to the wire with colorful clippers.
That got me thinking.
You can tell something about a household from people’s hanging laundry. The small pieces or one-sizes, for instance, could indicate the presence of an infant. The small but not so small pieces of clothing tell that there may be a child or two in the household. The night gown and blue, white, and black striped pajamas tell the story of an elderly couple. Then, there’s the jeans and plaid shirts, the scarves, the socks, and the hidden bras and underwear. These are just supposed guesses that could be totally off, as I don’t believe it is of privacy norms to stand there and look at people’s homes let alone their hanged laundry.
Once I got into a taxi with six other students, it drove off, and as we passed by the “Palestine World Trade Tower” of – I’m not sure – how many floors, I couldn’t help but smile at the idea of people still hanging their laundry outside in a world that asks for modernity before anything else. People still hang their laundry on wires (which, in the summer, could be attacked by insects known as “Abu Mqas,” literally “father of the scissors”), and just like that, an old touch is found.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s