Saturday, July 17, 2010


So I have an admittedly first world problem.

In 2003 the Mister and I traveled to Italy for a wedding of a friend and a visit to his grandmother (Nonna). At the time, Europe was having the hottest heat wave in 400 years, since they had started keeping  records.   His grandmother lives on a farm and has a washer, but not a dryer.  We visited Nonna on the first leg of our trip, and two days before we were supposed to leave, we did a load of laundry, mostly tshirts and shorts, nothing thick and heavy like blue jeans.  We hung it out to dry.

For two days.

That laundry stayed wet and damp.

We packed our wet and damp laundry into our suitcase, went to the next leg of the trip, spread our clothes all around the hotel room.  They stayed wet and damp for the remainder of our trip.  We came back to the States with a suitcase full of damp laundry, and all the previously dry clothes were made damp by the damp laundry. 

Now, we are off to Italy soon for another visit to Nonna.  This time with three children under five.  I have two large suitcases in which to pack clothes for five people, diapers for 2 and toys for 3, for a 10 day trip.

I am reluctant to pack lightly, knowing that laundry will be a hassle. Buying clothing/diapers when we get there is not a great option, as things generally *very* expensive in Italy. 

Also--washers in Italy are smaller than here in the states, use very little water, and the cycle usually lasts over an hour.  (At least, Nonna's washer did.)  I'd be tying up the washer for a long time to do the amount of laundry this family produces. 

On the other hand, I only have two large suitcases.  Ten days worth of clothes for five people is fifty outfits.  Plus diapers for 10 days.  There miiiiiight not be enough room for fifty outfits plus diapers.  Packing a third suitcase is not really option....we have a van when we get to Italy that needs to carry 7 people (my inlaws and their luggage are coming too), plus 3 carseats, a pack'n'play, a stroller, our two large suitcases, and 3 backpacks. 

I've looked at laundromats in Naples, and from what I can tell there are two kinds; self-serve and staffed.  It seems pretty expensvie---a small load can run $25 in a self serve, and $50+ in a staffed laundry, and it could take a few days to get your clothes back.

Maybe the solution is to pack for six days, do laundry at Nonna's house on day four, and hope that it line dries in two days?? 

I guess I'll go see how many clothes I can stuff into these 2 suitcases.

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