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So, let´s get started by jumping right in to a perfectly domestic act like the drying of one´s clothes and we´ll begin to get to know each other through the recounting of life´s daily trials and tribulations as told by me from down here below the fold in Buenos Aires.

My family of four generates 4 loads of laundry a week, two whites and two colored, not to mention sheets, towels and sundries. So what, everyone has laundry, Olive, this is nothing new or of special relevance, what gives? Well, here in Buenos Aires (or BA as we Americans who are in the know like to call it), the clothes  dryer has not gained traction, not one bit. What, no heat blowing perfectly square companion machine to your washing machine (because yes, we do have those and they look just like yours, promise)? So why the omission from the market of the accmpanying dryer? Beats me. All I know is that there is one model on the market and it probably doesn´t even dry that well. How would I know this? Because in my limited experience, Europe is not really on the dryer-train either. Oh, they exist, but they take twice as long and do not really produce fluffy towels, say.

Fluffy towels, ahhh, sigh.

These are a thing of the past in my life. My towels emerge from their washing and drying CRISP. What, crisp, you surely mean hard or even rough you say, but no, I prefer to call them crisp and attempt to conjure images of beachy sun-dried towels as opposed to the sandpaper they so closely resemble.

Without the help of the handy clothes dryer, a washing girl´s best friend is the “tender”  as it is called in castellaño, our Argentine version of Spanish. And yes, even in Spanish it is pronounced just like the chicken variety served at KFC.

The tender and his identical partner live on my 1m by 3m balcony and serve to dry all of my family´s laundry, towels, sheets, etc. As such one gets really good at both shaking out damp laundry to prevent wrinkles (since I do NOT iron!) and folding/overlapping certain items to maximize space.

This is a task which requires especially good luck in the winter when the sweats roll out and need to be washed and there are only 8 hours of sunlight and cold damp weather in the air all day! (but that´s another story, for July or August perhaps when it gets nice and cold) .

Truth be told, the only time I really miss a dryer is when it rains on your freshly washed hanging clothes (and a good sideways thunderstorm will do that, even on a roofed balcony) and then proceeds to rain for two days straight, forcing the drying process into the living room. Because everybody knows that drying clothes on the balcony is common sense, in the living room its downright tacky.

So yes, I do miss a dryer now and then, though as the Argentines will happily tell you (and I am afraid I must agree) clothes that are lined dried last a hell of a lot longer than than those that are beaten about twice a week in a dryer.