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Posts tagged ‘laundry’

Köln (Cologne)

Disappointment was not on the list at this destination. Our hotel was again in the industrial area of town but brought unforeseen bonuses. We were next to a metro line. As the helpful staff at the Mercure hotel pointed out we could buy a Köln card for that metro line for $9 each and go round trip all day. They had a bit of a struggle understanding what we were looking for in a room but in the end, everything worked out perfectly.

Who can see with masks on. All fogged up glasses

The room was comfortable and once settled, we took the metro for 11 stops to come to the Rhine River and the Chocolate Museum. Oh yes, they had one of those just for us and a couple of small Christmas markets along the way. The Köln card for the metro got us a little discount into the museum and on purchases we made there. We saw everything possible, then decided on a lunch break.

We found the secret stash of chocolate

I was really still full from our hotel breakfast which was lovely. It was an extra cost but we didn’t have to go out and hunt for it. No Denny’s or Pancake house on every corner here. Lunch was a cup of loaded hot chocolate. Mine was Grand Marnier, daughter’s was Bailey’s. We each had a crepe with banana’s that looked small but filled us to the top. The piece of chocolate cake we planned to get for dessert stayed behind as we waddled out.

There was plenty of chocolate shopping for gifts. Less for me than daughter. Trudging out with two bags of gifts, we amble through the Christmas market. The weather was once again kind. Then we walked some more to another Christmas market that was at the metro line. I was carrying my portable oxygen concentrator, purse and a very full body through the market. I didn’t want to add one more ounce to the weight. We bought cards and a few small things, finally dragging into our hotel to call it a day.

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The next day was as interesting in a very different way. We need a few things from the grocery store and were told it was directly across the street. Of course, we had to walk to the corner then back down. My daughter was impressed that they had 27 varieties of Philadelphia Cream Cheese. We rarely find more than three at home. We bought water and a beer along with chips and fixings. Four heavy bag loads had to be carried back to the hotel.

We would have loved a ride on this but I never saw it move.

The next day was laundry day. We have laundromats so handy but have found them almost nonexistent here. Hotel staff kindly directed us to the only one in the area. It was outdoors next to a super store much like a Walmart. Only the small washer was working so we had to do three small loads instead on one large one. At least the weather was good. I have never done my laundry outside in front of God and everyone.


It was a busy place and when the laundry was done, we had a look at the super store ourselves. It took great restraint to leave so much good stuff behind. Our last night we had dinner at the hotel and enjoyed a nice beer with it. Finding gas on the way out of town was another challenge. I’m am more than grateful that someone invented GPS or we might still be driving around in circles. The little flex fuel car had it onboard setting us straight. Too bad it didn’t explain how paying for the gas worked. Another lesson to be learned. I would easily go back here. Köln was new to both of us.

What’s new in your world?

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” ~ Marcel Proust

From my heart to yours,

Marlene Herself


In Search of an Odd Memory

Spring is in the air and with somewhat warmer temps, I’ve had a bit energetic momentum. It was time to change out the down comforter for something a bit lighter. When I opened the bag the lighter weight comforter was in, the smell nearly knocked me over. Well, I certainly couldn’t sleep under that. What to do, what to do? I could pay $20 -$30 dollars to get it dry cleaned and live with that chemical smell. There is no laundromat close by and because it has ribbon embroidery on the front, even a commercial washer can be a bit hard on it.

My last option was going back to an old memory from almost 45 years ago. Yes, I’m that old. My young military husband was stationed in Taiwan and I was allowed to join him there with our toddler son. It was like stepping into a time warp. We finally found a nice two-story apartment that had almost no modern conveniences. At least it had indoor plumbing. I cooked on a two burner hot plate and a toaster oven. We bought a refrigerator from the PX that was sold to the next family when we left. Washer and dryer? Not an option.

Military families were encouraged to hire local household help. I had very little to do in the way of cleaning the apartment but it was explained to me by those in the know, that a house girl did more than clean. I found a gem. She spoke relatively good English and understood quite well. Her job was essentially to do my downtown marketing and oversee what my son received as snack from neighborhood playmates. She said some things were ok for him, some not. Everything someone gave him, he had to show her before eating. If it was ok, he got the go ahead, if not it was traded for something safe for his American constitution. She taught me so many things in that 15 months.

What I learned about laundry from my house-girl, was something that has helped many years over. She watched me one day doing my laundry in the bathtub. I was doing it wrong. “Back and arms not strong” she said. “Legs and feet stronger” I just looked at her. Get in the tub with your feet and swish the clothes that way. By golly, it worked and my back was very happy about it.

Those are some strong legs and feet there. Just not very pretty.

Those are some strong legs and feet there. Just not very pretty.

any wonder I'm so fascinated with ducks.

any wonder I’m so fascinated with ducks.

That is what I did with the comforter. I couldn’t take pictures of me actually doing the washing parts. I’ve already given 2 phones a permanent burial at sea that way. I also have to firmly hold on to the counter and the tub handle because of my balance issue. So all you get to see is the spin cycle. Once the water is drained, I put it in the dryer on a delicate dry. Now, on my bed, it smells quite fresh and lovely.

Finally on the bed for a while.

Finally on the bed for a while.

I’ve done laundry this way on rare occasions and it always brings back fond memories of a woman, herself a mother of 3, who always had our best interests at heart and kept us safe in unknown territory. It’s interesting what brings up memories. A spring cleaning can bring up many for me. How about you?

Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them.
~ Bob Dylan

From my heart to yours,
Marlene Herself