Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Confessions of a Clothesline Peeper

In analyzing this weird obsession, I realize now at the age of 60 that this problem must date back to my childhood when the gypsies stole all my mother's bras from the clothesline late one night.  While it sounds dramatic and farfetched, I swear on my coveted wheelbarrow of seaglass in the garage (that's another problem) that the story below is true.  

We had just arrived home from a long summer road trip to Washington D.C. in the mid-1960's and my mother, a teacher, decided to wash clothes at 10:00 p.m.  Her school year started the next morning, so she wanted to unpack all the bags and wash everything that night.  At 10:40 p.m., she discovered the family dryer had shot the craps.  All the family laundry had to be hung on a rarely used clothesline out by the alley. She rousted me out of bed to help her.

Monday morning at 7:00 a.m., the family awoke to a crime scene.  All my mother's size 34 C white bras were missing from the clothesline!  

Why would I blame gypsies?  Every year in August when the county fair was taking place, a gypsy encampment consisting of a fleet of old Cadillacs and a bunch of tents settled in Little Park (named because it was smaller than the big park).  People in the town were warned to lock everything down and watch out for pick pockets.  

My father, wanting to take the embarrassing incident and run with it, immediately went to the local bank at 10 a.m. on his coffee break to file a claim with the insurance company for my mother's missing size 34 C bras.  The news spread like an Arizona wildfire and my mother's peers at the school were whispering and laughing by noon.

So, I've been destined ever since to document clotheslines.  I'm clothesline challenged here in this suburban HOA world, so all hell breaks loose when I'm in the Third World. Formerly, I couldn't pass a clothesline on Isla Mujeres without whipping out my camera.  Now I try to limit that behavior since there are often people behind the open doors and windows who recognize me from the last trip as the gringa turista who snaps photos of  their underwear.  

The first clothesline photo of the May/June 2014 trip was snapped around 11:00 p.m. on May 9 approximately two hours after we arrived on the island.  We stopped off at Rolandi's first for some fried calamari and a pizza. These people probably thought they were safe from the clothesline peeper at 11:00 p.m.  Not so!

These people have their clothes on lock down behind the gate.  Good idea!

  There's a bonus in this array of fabrics!  Is that a little bird in that cage on the wall?

These people are definitely sporty types who like blue and yellow!  Good choice!

Just sleuthing, but maybe we have a masseuse in this neighborhood?  Or does Queso Oxaca Man live on the island?

Line over Hidalgo.

Another upper balcony.  

Not a clothesline, but these roof dogs provide excellent security against rogue gypsies looking to do clothesline grabs on Isla!

Later in the trip, the Dulceria (look back to the first photo) had hung the good stuff!  Love love love clotheslines with embroidery!

Hanging kind of low!  Hope this doesn't signal sagging has invaded the clothesline world.

This little casa on the road to Chimbo's usually has a clothesline every dry day.

The clothesline pickins' were a little slim considering we were on Isla for almost a month, so maybe I'm a recovering clothesline peeper?  Let's hope!


Babs said...

GREAT story! Enjoyed the photos as well. I love the way they take those plastic buckets or whatever is not being used to use for plants. Also the fact that usually there is a plastic chair somewhere in close proximity to the clothesline. AND, about that sea glass..........oh my, oh my, oh my I wish I was closer. I'd try to wrangle some from you (wrangle is a Texas term).

Janet said...

Love it Becky!! Great pictures. Your gypsy story was wonderful. My Mom would tell us gypsy stories from her younger days....but your story is priceless! !!

Life's a Beach! said...

Thanks Janet and Barbara! I need to drive some sea glass down to San Miguel!