Every single morning, part of the daily routine is to gather all the dirty clothes and shove them in the washing machine. We get particularly grubby on the farm so the washing machine tends to be on several times a day and then depending on the weather, the clothes go out to dry on the line or are put in the tumble dryer.
I'm not sure how many days the water has been off but there is an enormous mountain of clothes to wash but no way of running the machine.
I voiced my concerns to my husband and I should have known when a gleam appeared in his eye and the mearest hint of a wry smile.
"I have the very thing in the shed" quoth he. "Give me a minute".
Now his shed is an Aladdin's Cave of tools, tractors, things which Have No Name but Serve A Purpose, bailer twine, everything really. It smells of diesel, skulking and dust. There are bits at the back where I dare not venture because I once saw something move and it was wearing a rat disguise.
He appeared a little while later looking terribly pleased with himself and yes, there stood my new washing machine.
"You know how we watched Edwardian Farm last night, well, Ruth said the laundry came up nicely". "There is a mangle too".
I did not know what to say so just stared vacantly then my lips puckered like a drawstring purse.
"You know, we have not progressed MUCH since your Great Grandmother stood here at this very sink doing this very task".
"Well, she did not have to do it" he said sheepily.
"Of course she did. The women half killed themselves scrubbing clothes and everything. And they used soap."
"No. They had a maid".