London 1991 in the kitchen at my dad’s ladyfriends’s place washing up after dinner. These were the days when jiffies were not done because either you couldn’t afford it or it was not fashion. I already had my dishwasher in my own home, but here I was on holiday with the family visiting dad in London, and dish washers were unwelcome. They used too much electricity. You did not do the washing up in a jiffy, washing up was a ceremony. As you can see in the photo a younger me almost 30 years ago, was just in it for the photo. I probably asked “can I help”, but it seems my help was not necessary. Dad always helped his women folk with the washing up. He would always be in the kitchen with mum after eating, and so it was with Ada, his lady friend. Dad passed away last year at the age of 100 years and 7 months, and Ada about 8 years before, at the age of 92 years, so washing up manually must have kept them healthy.
Dad once won a dishwasher in a competition. It was a quiz with general knowledge questions, but the questions were no so general and you really needed a library to solve the questions. My best friend from my school days was a librarian with college degree and all the trmmings, so together they managed to crack the nut, with the exception of one question, but they won. The guy that got the second prize also cracked them all with the exception of two. The competition was in the newspaper where dad worked, Fords car company in Dagenham. The reporter from the newspaper paid him a visit with a photographer and his photo was shown in the newspaper as being the winner. He had a drying up cloth in his hand, and the heading under the photo was something in the style of this being the last time he would have to dry the dishes by hand.
OK these machines were not working class east end London, and so he sold the machine and continued to do dry the dishes by hand whilst mum washed them by hand: no jiffies in our home. Of course my friend got her share of the profits as well. She also now has a real electric dishwasher in the meanwhile.
I remember our Christmas parties at my aunts house, where the whole family was assembled. After the Christmas tea the men would disappear somewhere for a smoke and the women were left in the kitchen (also smoking) but they would do the washing up together. My mum and two aunts would get down to the work. although there were enough people to do it in a jiffy, there was some conversation to catch up on and there again the jiffy disappeared.
Today Mr. Swiss always warns me not to rush. He means it well, but my movabilitiy is not longer what it was and rushing is no longer a physical possibilitiy. I have a dish washer in any case, and a washing machine, and yes times have changed. Shame my legs are no longer moving in a jiffy, but I get there eventually. To be quite honest Mr. Swiss is the expert with the washing machine. He is the operator in the evening and I have almost forgotten how the machine works.
So another WordPress Daily prompt hits the road – in a jiffy.