The hard-working men and women of Manila has only the weekend for their wash date. We dub it “Washington Day” — because washing tons of personal gear is excruciating enough to be a significant event. Here’s Lawrence Peter “It’s better to have love and lost, than do a ton of laundry.”
But of course we can always run to the nearest laundry shop for comfort. Here in Malate, we have this beloved shop attendant who, fed up with her punishing workload of collecting dirty laundries once grumbled: “Why can’t everyone just get themselves their own washing machine?”
253 miles down south of Manila, in the foothills of Mount Asog, a formation of washers execute the final solution to the laundry question.
Doing the laundry, as far as Pinoys are concerned, used to be a domestic task exclusive to women only, especially in the rural areas. The ladies would troop down to the batis with their palo-palo and batya come washday while the men scratch their tummies under the shade tree.
A male doing this “woman’s job” would be subjected to ridicule. But that was a long time ago — when fabric softener wasn’t even invented. Today here in Tunggalon Spring, and in this age of she-conomy, some old practices and attitudes that preserve inequalities have died out. I have seen how men climb down from their Harley Davidsons and join the pack of washers here and nobody seems to mind at all.
Detergents, lathers, suds, fabric conditioners..talk of wet market.
Tunggalon Spring, in Sto. Domingo, Iriga City, is just one of the many pristine watering places scattered all over the City of Crystal-Clear Spring. One can roam around town and find more of the same bustling scenery in considerably every corner! Although the Tunggalon waterway is a lot larger than other bathing/washing grounds found in the city streets and a lot nicer for a plunge, there’s this every Irigueños’ favorite dipping ground: the Masosu spring resort.
At any rate, these bodies of waters here in Iriga City are all — mind you — stinging cold.
Aboveground. Tunggalon Spring is right at the bosom of an idyllic community.
So what is this laundress burying her face for? Perhaps she’s ashamed of washing her dirty linens in public.