When you have a grand total of 4 or 5 shirts for an extended period of time (let’s say… 9 months), a trip to the local laundromat is somewhat inevitable.
We had been intermittently rinsing our clothes in the sink with Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap (which we use as laundry detergent, shampoo, body wash, and dish soap).
And I have to admit, Dr. B’s is pretty magical.
But after a lot of hiking and sweating, we decided that our clothes needed a good machine wash, so that we wouldn’t smell like the dirty backpackers we are.
Meet Dexter, the washing machine that was going to help us smell like real humans again.
Since we were in a laundromat in Florence, there were shirt-shaped instructions hanging on the wall in both Italian and English.
Overall, it was pretty straightforward.
They even had change machines, to swap out your paper bills for 1 euro coins or laundromat tokens.
I liked that it had a face and that you fed the bills into its hungry machine mouth.
Like, how cute is this guy? He just wants a snack.
Now, this may be an unpopular opinion, but I hate laundry detergent scents. I don’t particularly want to smell like a spring daisy, mountain breeze, butterfly kiss, teddy bear blanket, lamb that’s frolicking around in a meadow. Just, NO.
However, this trip has somewhat changed that opinion. Now, I love laundry detergent scents. All of them. Because that means that my clothes have been cleaned by Dexter (or some other washing machine), that is much better at scrubbing my clothes than I am.
(This picture of a metal cage with 800 different padlocks is relevant, because that’s the detergent dispenser.)
So we freed some delightful lavender butterfly kisses from this metal box of tyranny and tossed our clothes in a washer.
And while the overall process seemed easy enough, it’s mildly terrifying to have every single piece of clothing you own (except your laundromat clothes) hinging on Dexter, a machine you just met like 5 minutes ago.
Like, how much can we really trust him? What if he’s one of those washers that eats your socks?? What if he forgot to brush his teeth after ingesting some bleach? You just never know.
Luckily, there was free WiFi, so I was soon distracted from my washing machine trust issues and transported to a world of silly internet articles and Facebook and Spotify.
35 minutes later, my clothes smelled like a snuggly baby, giggling in a fresh autumn breeze, rolling across the crisp ocean air on a rainbow made of lilacs and daisies. Aka my new favorite smell.
I literally buried my nose in my still-wet clothes and inhaled the scent so deeply I thought I might pass out.
You guys. I should have known that Dexter would never let me down.