I am scared of getting married, having kids and raising a family. It just stems from the fear of having added responsibility of keeping people alive and thriving. It terrifies me to think of the chaos my life will have in the next few years. Now why must I have it, because somewhere inside, I want to have it as well. I want to have a loving, caring support system that of course includes a couple of dogs too. The other thing that scares me is having to change a lot of my habits. It is a part of the chaos that unnerves me, where I will have to change my sleeping-waking up timings, shower schedule, food habits, even the way I do the dishes.
When I moved to USA, I saw the dishwasher for the first time in my life. We were not sure what to do with it. My roommate tried to use it and we ended up with a kitchen floor with soapy suds upto the ankles. Thankfully, I escaped the cleaning activities by being in the school library at that time. Anyways, she did not follow the instructions, and so it was her mess to clean, so I felt only a little bit guilty. Having never used or even seen it before in India, it still remained very mysterious and cumbersome to me.
I always found the dishwasher to be a strange piece of appliance. You were supposed to scrape off the leftovers, rinse, and again put everything in the dishwasher to clean. If I was doing half the work already, what will the dishwasher do?? I have trouble liking appliances that seem like doing only half the job. Plus, thanks to the soapy mess experience, I always felt that it was more trouble than worth it. Not to mention, the added electricity bill, for the poor student who had to count every dollar going out of her pocket, made it even worse. So how did we use the dishwasher? We used to wash and store the dishes, cooking pots and pans inside and used it as a drying rack. We did that when I lived with the girls, and continued doing the same when I lived with Abhi and the xBF, until the day we discovered a gross green pool building inside the dishwasher. The one that we had in this apartment, had a bad drain. Us and our other roommates would load it without even attempting to let the excess water run off the dishes and pans. So the dripping water was collecting at the base and there was mildew all over on the floor. That day we somehow managed to run the dishwasher correctly and cleaned it, and we were extra careful about wiping off excess water first, and regularly cleaning the appliance.
We moved to another apartment in San Diego and that place did not have one. We finally bought a drying rack and mat and that was where our dishes went. Then in both my previous places in OC, we were using a drying mat to dry everything and then I would wipe off and keep everything back in the shelves before bedtime. My first roommate in OC, Laurel, would often use her dishwasher. Whereas my Vietnamese landlady in the previous place, used it just like I did in San Diego. From what I had gathered from my Asian friends and Reddit over the years, was that Asians do not tend to use it, considering electricity and all that, or for whatever reasons. Most Asians, and I am including Indians, use it as a drying rack or for storage. Abhi and Nish use theirs to store lunch boxes and Tupperware. I am doing the same thing in my current apartment. My lower rack also hold all plastic bags that I use for lining trash cans and recycle bin. I am sure you all know by now that I am quite a miser and a cheapskate, so the electricity bill is still a major point. These habits have resulted in a weird thought process where I happen to think that Dishwasher is practically unusable!
I hung out with Pop this weekend when my parents went to Seaworld, San Diego. I did not go because I have seen it 3 years back and now I am not into the whole animals-shows-training thing anymore. Pop and Bandar and her Hubby hosted us over the weekend, and what a wonderful time I had! We had some amazing Mexican food for lunch, went to the beach, tried to play Paddleball and managed to hit everyone around us with our rogue ball. They have a lovely house that has a backyard with a grill. We had yummy Paneer tikka and a bunch of other yummy things during the course of our stay with them. Pop, a huge thanks for being such awesome hosts!
Life goes through many stages. Each more chaotic than the other. A simple thing like being able to use dishwashers means to me that a person has settled well into life and its chaos. I saw Pop doing that. I saw her scraping stuff off, rinsing the dishes and loading the dishwasher after every meal. I saw how the dishwasher runs, and gives super clean, warm dishes back. I noticed how well it fit in her scheme of things and lifestyle. It was just… Right. Bandar was playing around, or eating or going off to sleep and a being a super-cute goofball. Pop and H are usually handling work and Bandar and life. It is like juggling pins and trying not to drop them, but those pins give the most satisfying feeling. It could be anything with regards to work, friends, family and home. A practically unusable piece of appliance, fit in so perfectly in their lifestyle. Of course, she had to use it, considering the amount of dishes that were being used. But even if I had a pile, I have avoided using it, only because I am used to a certain way and I hate changing it.
I think such is life. You suddenly find beauty in chaos. You make peace with things that scared you earlier. You manage to plunge into the unknown with the hope that you will make it. Maybe one day, I will also stop looking at it with suspicion and the dishwasher will fit into my life. I look forward to the dishwasher stage of my life. And to the Yacht and a Greek villa stage too.
*If you made it till here, congratulations on having read a strange post about an appliance. I was thinking about all this while in the shower and it just made sense to me.*