rains coming to an end

The rainy season is finally ending here. One of the signs for me is the colorfully draped clotheslines that hang from nearly every possible surface to catch the sun. Lines are stung between trees, signposts, on power lines (not working, of course). Hedges creatively are transformed into makeshift drying racks. Lawns are strewn with drying laundry – it’s debatable whether this defeats the purpose of laundering them in the first place! Sometimes I feel like I should look away – it feels a bit voyeuristic to glimpse a row of boys’ white underpants, or men’s work shirts inflated by the wind. I once saw an entire line filled with stuffed animals – bunnies hanging by their ears, bears by their paws – I so wish I had my camera! My favorites are the carnival-like lines draped with colorful lapa cloths, the brightly dyed fabrics that women wear tied around their waists and heads. It’s just a daily necessity, all this washing, but it transforms the roadsides into colorful canvases.

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