As I was putting a dirty hand towel in the laundry basket, I debated putting the nearly-new, fluffy guest towel in its place until the old one was washed and dried. As I removed it from the linen closet, I asked myself if I should “use” the Nice Towel for us.
Shouldn’t it stay safely away from the unpleasant realities of the bathroom, becoming wet over and over, never fully drying, enduring constant abuse, until it is mercifully cast into the laundry basket and put out of its misery?
I jerked my hand back. No, I thought, it should stay Eternally Fluffy and Soft, only deserving to be used by our house guests.
SHOULDN’T IT STAY SAFELY AWAY FROM THE UNPLEASANT REALITIES OF THE BATHROOM, BECOMING WET OVER AND OVER, NEVER FULLY DRYING, ENDURING CONSTANT ABUSE, UNTIL IT IS MERCIFULLY CAST INTO THE LAUNDRY BASKET AND PUT OUT OF ITS MISERY?
And then it hit me: my house guests had only ever seen this towel, if they even entered the bathroom. They must think that this beautiful towel always resided upon our towel ring.
1) Why should we save the Nice Towels for people who don’t even live in our homes, while we ourselves use the older, somewhat faded everyday towels, only allowing the better ones to see the light of day when we had visitors?
2) It also occurred to me that others must be doing the same thing whenever I visited their homes. And this realization extended to others’ homes in general.
Are we only seeing each others’ fake clean homes?
Granted, I never clean so well as when we are about to have guests over. If a friend is In The Neighborhood And Wants to Drop By, I panic and clean the bathroom like a madwoman, including replacing the towels. With two kids, there is definitely a hygiene factor to consider, but God forbid anyone see my home in its true form.
I felt bad that such a nice, more expensive towel was essentially going to waste in the linen closet, while the people who use the bathroom the most (my family) made do with the Nice Towel’s less fortunate cousins.
Something about that logic seemed unfair. I put my hand back in the closet, peeled the towel from its stack, and hung it proudly in the bathroom.
But future visitors needn’t worry—whoever visits my home will still get a Nice Towel, in a bathroom I’ve cleaned like a madwoman.
Do you have any unusual cleaning rituals, especially when expecting guests?