Thursday, 18 October
Recovering from our big day yesterday (October 17 was our 37th wedding anniversary) we decided that we needed clean clothes for the last leg of this journey.
Asking at the front desk of our Spiddal B&B, An Cruiscin Lan, we found that the nearest place to do laundry was in Carraroe, about 20 km north. Two big coin-op washers and one dryer are set up there in the parking lot of the Centra store. How convenient! 😲👎🏽
We were told of a coral beach not too far down the road from the laundry facilities so we decided after our wash and dry to take a long walk on the coral beach.
First order of business – get coins. Second step – buy laundry detergent. Cancel second step – washer comes preloaded with detergent. New second step – figure out how the pay station for the machines work. After some fumbling we got the washer humming away. We grabbed some hot chocolate from the convenience store and retreated to Sal (our car) to get out of the wind.
Having set the phone timer we emerged from the shelter of the car and transferred the clothes to the dryer. Back to the car.
Bing! Dryer time up. With laundry bag ready we reached into the dryer to find our clothes still sodden. Hmm, let’s turn up the heat level on the dryer (and hopefully not turn our clothes into doll clothes) and climbed back into the car.
Bing! Back to the dryer. Clothes still pretty wet. After debating the pros and cons we upped the heat and fed in more coins.
Bing! Clothes still not even remotely dry enough to take back to our room to spread out to dry. Mike found a service number on the machine and called for help. Sinead, who answered the phone, was cheerful and sympathetic but the bottom line was a tech would not be available for a couple of weeks.
We looked at each other and decided to go for broke. Every stitch of clothing we had with us other than what we were wearing was in that dryer – wet. We cranked the heat to the highest level possible and fed in more coins. In spite of the cold we stayed in front of the dryer and stared transfixed as though watching the most thrilling, engrossing TV show ever. We were willing heat through immense concentration.
Bing! Hurrah! Clothes actually felt warm. More coins deposited. However, the light was fading rapidly and it would be dark soon. We had never driven in the darkness that is rural Ireland at night.
Bing! The clothes were dry enough to take out. We could touch the damp spots with a hair dryer once back in our room.
Taking deep breaths we got into the car for the 25 minute absolutely terrifying and nerve-wracking trip back to Spiddal in the dark. Bravo Mike for his superb skill in getting us back safely.
What a lovely afternoon at the coral beach!
Slainte. Slan go foill.