By Diana Harley · · From 500 Words: Family Trait
My parents never had a dishwasher and, as many readers of my stories will know, although my current kitchen does sport a fairly modern one, my relationship with that dishwasher has irretrievably broken down. Accordingly, we are not on touchy feely terms anymore and my affections turned, some time ago, to my stainless steel kitchen sink. Each and every day my sink has my undivided attention as I don my rubber gloves and therapeutically set about the cleansing of the crockery.
When I was growing up, our kitchen only had a single sink. None of today’s fancy-shmancy kitchen culture of one-and-a-half or double bowls.
But just because we only had one sink didn’t mean we washed and rinsed our dishes in the same dirty water. No siree.
Our family was very particular about how we washed our dishes – and even though we didn’t have an extra special sink, we rinsed our dishes in a small basin of clean hot water. And the hotter the water, the better.
And because the rinsing water was so incredibly hot, by the time one of us kids had to wipe up, the dishes were virtually dry. No soggy tea towels to contend with either – a win, win situation!
And no, we didn’t use rubber gloves back then. Another family trait of ours may be either a high tolerance to pain or being exceedingly clever in how we wrangle the dishes at the rinsing stage. I think it’s probably the latter.
I’m proud to say that I still enjoy exercising my parents’ rinsing gene. Admittedly, I am spoilt with my one-and-a-half sink that makes rinsing so easy and a mixer tap that delivers lots of lovely hot water, but when you spend as much time as I do doing dishes, I think I deserve this little luxury.
Family and friends think my family’s insistence on rinsing dishes to be quite bizarre. And yes, we have been told to “get a life” or that “small things amuse small minds”, but it seems that our need to rinse is a distinctive trait and one that we are passing on. My children definitely know about my insistence on rinsing!
And if I happen to be at the home of family or friends and I am helping out with the dishes, this washing up dinosaur takes over the sink, the suds and the hot water and always rinses!!!
Unfortunately, or fortunately, there is no way we can tolerate drying dishes without washing off the soapy suds. It’s just not what we do!
So…to rinse or not to rinse, that is the question – you know my answer, now tell me yours!