I have lived in the same apartment for the last five years. It’s a nice place, or at least it was until Jobu and I moved in. He likes to eat the carpet. The place comes with the hookups for a washer and dryer. I always wanted to get a set. One main obstacle stood in my way. I don’t like spending money on anything that isn’t electronic and won’t be obsolete in a few months. Almost all my furniture I’ve acquired for free. It might be possible with new fancy appliances to categorize them as electronics, but I aint buying that argument.
Every once in a while I would look for a pair. I remember finding the cheapest set I could and heading out to best buy. I was willing to part with the $350. When I got there I was informed that that was the price for just the washer. It was 700 for the set. Heck no. I aint paying that. So every two to three weeks I load up the car and head to the laundromat.
I would keep my ear open in hopes of hearing about a cheap or free used set. A friend of mine is in the process of moving and is getting rid of a lot of his stuff. He asked me if I wanted any of the stuff he wasn’t moving to the new house. I told him what I could really use was a washer and dryer. What do you know, he had a brand new set at the new house and was willing to give me his old ones.
First I needed to find a vehicle that could haul the things. I asked around and got a couple of maybes. The day of the great haul a buddy of mine, we’ll call him D, said he couldn’t get the truck. His brother had taken the key and wandered off, but he had something better.
He showed up at my place driving a full size van. This van is special. It has a power lift for getting a wheelchair in and out. I climbed in and we headed off. I looked over at him and ask, “Do you know where A lives?”
“Nope,” he shook his head.
Luckily we live in the days of text messaging and I got A’s address.
We are greeted at the hose by A and a crew that is helping him move. He lead us into the basement. I tried to hide my shock and horror when I gaze upon my new free washer and dryer. He has clearly had them the entire twenty years he has lived in that house. They are old and stained. I can’t complain though. Never look a gift horse in the mouth.
D and I managed to lug them out of the basement. After a struggle we got them into the van. At this point we realized it would be way easier to get them up the stairs if we had an appliance dolly. A call or two later and off we went to pick up the dolly and then headed to my place.
We got the washer out and strapped to the dolly. I have never had so much trouble in my life going up sixteen steps. And oh yes, I now know exactly how many steps make up my stairs. At each step I pulled from the top. My buddy pushed from the bottom. In rhythm, I would squat down and push with my legs while yanking on the handles. I started counting the steps after the very first one. I called them out like each time we manage one was a great victory. After we dragged it into the apartment we had to stop for at least ten minutes just to catch our breath. The dryer is lighter than the washer and we had an easier time of it.
At this point a realization hit me. These appliances had spent over twenty years in the house of a heavy smoker. They smelled of smoke and were covered in a brownish yellow layer. With the help of oven cleaner we were able to clean off most of the smoke stains.
We maneuvered the washer and dryer into the utility room and I started setting them up. I quickly noticed a problem. They both fit, but the exhaust hole for the dryer isn’t in the wall. It is in the middle of the floor and also has no way to clamp the hose onto it. It appears as if the whole assembly has been smashed into the floor. After more sweating and some cussing I manage to get the hose on the dryer and I just jam it into the hole in the floor and seal it with duct tape. Hey, it is called duct tape I hope it can hold a duct together. The washer hooked up easily but because of the exhaust hole I couldn’t push it all the way back against the wall. So it sticks out a few inches and I can’t close the door anymore.
I am glad to report that they both work fine. In fact I am doing a load of laundry while I write this. As for me, I hurt all over.