Monday, December 28, 2009

Chapter Three-- page 6

I found it harder to make decisions about our clutter in the bathroom. Our bathroom was so tiny; it seemed like an afterthought in the design of our mobile home. It was so small; we practically had to pull down our pants in the hallway and back in to use the toilet. It had a small corner sink surrounded by a few of inches of counter space, just big enough to hold a couple of toothbrushes and a set of electric rollers to quaff my already out-of-date Farrah Fawcet hairdo. Underneath it was a little cupboard for storage, and beside it built into the wall was a small triangular closet which held a five gallon hot water heater on the bottom and two storage shelves above. Next to the toilet was a full sized bathtub with shower. It was ridiculous use of the limited space because, with only a five gallon hot water heater, we had to boil water in the three gallon spaghetti pot a couple of times if we ever wanted to take a bath. The toilet was squeezed in between the generous bathtub and the wall. I had often thought how lucky we were that we were both very thin when we were young. If we had been any bigger we would have needed to call the fire department with the Jaws of Life to get us off the toilet. How was our family of four supposed to function in such limited space?

We needed all the stuff we had in the bathroom, but how much was enough? We had two babies. We really needed only two hooded baby towels, not the six that I had crammed into the shelves above the water heater. For the two of us we had multiple mismatched towels packed tightly into the closet shelves. My favorite ones, however, were the ones I never used: a beautiful set of fluffy white towels with gold monograms that we had received as a gift from Dan’s brother for our wedding. They hung on the towel bar literally collecting dust.

When I was growing up I had visited homes that had pretty towels hanging in the bathroom just for show. I believed them to be an essential part of a proper Pledge commercial house. I had only one towel bar, and so it seemed only fitting to grace it with the best and most beautiful that I had to offer. I loved my monogrammed towels, but keeping them hanging on the only towel bar meant that I had nowhere to hang the ratty old towels with which we always dried ourselves. We needed our closet full of crummy towels because we used them all: Since we had nowhere to hang used towels, we threw them into the dirty clothes hamper after just one use. I had to rethink my priorities. How could I free up space in the towel cupboard without sacrificing my pretty towel dream?

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