Letters to the Editor from the Spring 2018 Issue

A reader shares her memories and love for hanging laundry on an outdoor clothesline.

| Spring 2018

  • clothes drying
    Clothes drying on an outdoor homemade clothesline.
    Photo by Rebekah Sell

  • clothes drying

Ode to Outdoor Clotheslines

The tree-to-tree ones, T-bar posts, and don't forget those lines hanging from the back porches of apartments with the bent rod. And those "curtain stretchers" that used to appear in fall, just before closing the windows for winter, and again for spring cleaning, to which the sheer curtains would be pinned, since the curtain material was too delicate to be ironed.

My umbrella clothesline is in use all year long. Even in winter, all it takes is a sunny day with a breeze for most things to dry well. The heavier laundry comes in to be hung on wooden drying racks in front of a radiator, and clothes go on hangers between doorways. Kids can run under the hanging clothes, but adults need to duck. I've never thought for a moment that it was inconvenient.

With all the clothes hanging to dry, you'll suddenly smell the unmistakable scent of fresh, cool air, while the moisture coming from the laundry adds humidity to the air.

Hanging laundry is part of housekeeping — and one task this great-granny enjoys!



Gail Beaudoin
Springfield, Massachusetts






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