A Clothes On The Line Kind Of Day


I cannot believe it is only March 11!  This weather is absolutely beautiful.  Sunny, a brisk Iowa breeze and warmth.

We hear the flocks of geese continue to fly over as they migrate north and had the fun of seeing six bald eagles roost in the trees by the river for a couple nights.  Huge flocks of red-winged blackbirds have also been coming back and the mornings are becoming noisy with birds singing, once again.

I am finding it hard to keep myself indoors on a day like this. I have opened all the windows, as our temps are in the 60’s, and letting some of that nice fresh air in.  I decided that it was a great day to do some laundry and get it hung outside on the line.  There is always something so satisfying about seeing clean towels flapping in the wind.  They smell amazing when they’ve been on the line outside.  I should say they usually smell great when they have been outside.  Every once in awhile, in the mid-summer heat and humidity, we get the distinct smell of hogs from the neighbor’s hog buildings. I tend to avoid using outdoor drying on those days.

I have been using the same clothesline poles my entire married life and they are the same ones my mom used my entire childhood.  They started out as drive shafts on some type of vehicle. They were probably in a junkyard till some enterprising welder decided he could repurpose them, turn them into clothesline poles and make a few extra bucks.  I remember when my mom was using them; the lines were made of some really hard wire.  We would have to wipe them with a damp cloth before we hung the clothes on them, as they tended to rust and we did not want that on our good clothes.  These lines were the only dryer my mom had; as she did not have either a gas or an electric dryer in the house.  When it was winter it was no fun hanging clothes outside.  Those wet clothes made your fingers turn blue before you got too many of them hung up.  If you have never taken freeze dried blue jeans off a clothesline you are really missing something.  They were so frozen they would stand up by themselves. We were so grateful when mom got her first dryer.

The lines were great for hanging blankets on and making A-frame tents to sleep out in with our friends and cousins.  The tents worked great till the wind blew really hard and popped all our clothes pins off.  These are also the same clotheslines poles that my cousin was swinging on, landed wrong, and broke her arm.

When my folks decided they no longer needed that many lines, I inherited them, minus the large hunks of cement that were used to anchor them underground.  My husband welded new pieces on the bottom and we sunk them into the ground for my use, with brand new large hunks of concrete.  When we moved to the place we live now, we dug them up once again, and once again put them in the ground, with more concrete.  I love the connection I have with my mom when  I am using the same clothesline poles she did. It is funny how a piece of metal can bring back so many memories.  I think it is really cool that way back, someone repurposed an item and I can still use it today. About the time we think “being green” is a new innovation we look around and realize it is not new at all.

I have a feeling I had better enjoy this weather and make the best use of it……I hear we are not going to have it this nice next week.  They keep telling us that it will be colder and rainy weather is coming.  I guess I can be grateful we keep getting a taste of spring and of the summer to come.


Then I will give you your rains in their season,
and the land shall yield its increase,
and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.
Leviticus 26:4 – ESV

At the request of my good friend, Sara, I am adding a couple pictures of my “infamous poles”. (her words)

Clothesline Pole from Drive Shaft

This next one is a close up of the clever system the inventor used so my husband can tighten up a sagging line.

Line Tightening System

4 thoughts on “A Clothes On The Line Kind Of Day

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