Out To Dry
Laundry must be one of the most mundane things we have to do in everyday life. It's so ingrained in our domestic lives that every aspect of it is universally mundane.
We've snapped washing lines nearly everywhere we've travelled. We don't go out searching for them - that would be a bit weird, even for us. They just happen to be one of the many things that catch our attention.
Curiously, it's only as I was editing a few of our photos that I realised that we've never paid any attention to the actual items hanging out to dry. Instead they tend to catch our eyes as interesting additions to the cityscape.
Washing lines festoon across narrow streets and drape across balconies like irregular ballooning bunting. They're strewn across poles that are rammed into the ground. Wafting that manufactured scent of cleanliness that I personally find so comforting.
The act of hanging laundry outside our homes, in plain sight of the public is one of the necessities arising from urban living. Perhaps that's why our minds tend to overlook it. We may assume that a degree of privacy is due.
These days, landlords across London seem to have taken offence against our washing, prohibiting residents from drying washing in the most normal and instinctive way . I hear that it is also the case in parts of USA. Yet throughout Asia, Africa, South America and many other parts of Europe, washing lines emblazon balconies and every bit of outdoor space. Which brings me to why we like the humble washing line. It reminds us that cities are not cities without the people that live within them.
Dvora took these photos in a courtyard on a housing estate in Pimlico where the residents had to fight to keep their washing lines from a local authority who had other plans for the precious space. Read about their plight.
We're so pleased that Jordan had a moment to share some great shots with us (we're saving the rest for our next visit to other people's washing lines). This was taken on his last trip to Hong Kong. We definitely recommend reading his blog on that.