Thursday, July 22, 2010

Childhood Stories - Moberly - Bath

We had running water on the farm; if the person carrying it back from the well was strong enough, he could run with it.

We had a wringer washer and a good sized bathtub in one corner of the house downstairs. Dad built walls around that corner with more of his poplar lumber, several boards nailed to a 4 by 4 pole every few feet, and a doorway draped with a blanket.

I think these implements drained through some pipes Dad had laid down to the lagoon.  I remember hauling water into the house, for baths, but not out again…

Saturday morning, ten AM, time to start preparing a bath.  For best results, use the following procedure:

Find the plug, plug the tub. 
Put your boots on, and find a couple five gallon buckets. 
Go out the basement door, around the end of the house and up to the well. 
Let the dipping bucket down into the well, hand over hand, till it reaches the water, tips over, and fills. 
Haul the full bucket up, and pour its contents into one of your five gallon pails. 
Repeat this process for the second bucket. 
Take the handle of one full bucket in each hand, and walk, with as little spillage as possible, down the hill, around the house, into the basement. 
Take your boots off. 
Carry the water through the kitchen, and into the laundry room. 
Pour each bucket into the tub.

You now have a good inch of water in the bottom of the tub.  Repeat the whole process ten times more if you wish to bathe in any reasonable depth of water. 

Having done these preliminary preparations, you now have a bathtub with ninety to one hundred gallons of ice cold water.  To warm it up enough to bathe in, do the following:
Make sure the power plant is on.
Find the electric heater with the metal foot and the rubber handle.
Find an extension cord, and check it for open wires. 
Plug it in to the power source on one end, and the heater on the other end. 
Place the metal foot into the cold water in the tub. 
Wait for six hours while the water warms up. 
Unplug the heater. 

You are now ready for your bath, as are the other ten grubby people in the house.  Fight or negotiate for your place in the line. 

Following this simple 96-step procedure will insure that you get a bath, almost every time you do it!  For the maintenance and development of friendships at school, do it five times a week.  You won’t regret it!

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