D62. Nov1. Dhobi Dhobi

So. I’ve already spent three days resting at that nice hotel.
Though, I’ve spent the first day washing my things – all of them were dirty – and part of the second day drying them with the iron so that the cleaning people wouldn’t find out my dozen of panties, socks, tee-shirts, hung everywhere in the fancy room – Like that for instance 🙂

Capture d’écran 2013-11-01 à 04.00.25

“But why the hell didn’t you give your things to the laundry service?” are you gonna ask me. No, I’m not greedy, it has nothing to do with that. It has to do with the dhobi wallahs.

Dhobi stands for a caste group responsible for washing clothes, from collecting linen to ironing them, those different functions implying that, Inside the group, there are subdivisions. As you know, castes are not supposed to mix, but further, subdivisions within the same caste do no mix neither.
Anyway, coming back to my primary concern, the thing is that ten years ago, when I visited South India, I had a chance to see how they were washing the clothes. That’s how I understood why my clothes were smelling weird and why, one day, I got back my bras completely ripped apart.

So, the process is the following. You go to the polluted river and you splash the clothes on the rocks, to make sure the stains and dust vanish. The problem is that it doesn’t only remove the stain, it removes the fabric, which make your things age very prematurely !!!

Dhobi Wallah

On the other hand, it gives jobs to thousands of people across the country and they are very afraid that, some day, washing machines will kill the profession. That far, they have been lucky.
Yesterday, the cleaning manager, when entering my room, asked if I wanted the sheets to be changed. When I answered “No” I thought he would kill me. I guess it’s because people like me jeopardize this profession ? From now on I will ask my linen to be changed every day.

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