In the rest of the known world it is called a baker ‘s dozen, or something extra, like thirteen donuts in a box of a dozen. In New Orleans and Cajun country, it is called lagniappe, more applied to an extra scoop of crawfish than donuts. To my knowledge, lagniappe has never been applied to underwear. Until now.
My gracious hotel operator was not content to merely direct me to the laundromat. He insisted on personally on walking me there. (Had he been reading my adventures with GPS?)
When I entered the laundromat, a tall, striking woman of color was folding the last of her wash with the reluctant assist of her teenage son. She saw I was about to run my load without adding soap (The machine I used in France last fall had added the soap automatically) and advised me in sign language I needed to buy the soap first.
Later, my wash done and dried, I got back to the room and dumped it out on the bed to repack Claude. The next thing I know, I'm holding a pair of ladies panties in my hand. What made it worse (I suppose in a relative sense) was I knew who they belonged to.
I recalled that striking (and now even more so) woman of color I'd met earlier in the laundromat. I used the same dryer as she did, so I know they're hers. It's one thing to get a pair of panties mixed up in your wash at a laundromat, but when your able to put a face to...ah, well you know what I mean.
Now they weren't anything like the satiny, lacy French cut pair saved for that special night of promise. They were more like the kind you'd wear to the gym. But to a man who’s been widowed for a year… ah well you know what I mean.
The kicker to this tale of the knickers is I brought them back to the laundromat and left them, all laid out, on the folding table. If she came back to get them, she's going to know the likely person doing the returning, as I was the only other individual in the laundromat with her. So, at that point, she could then put a face (and hands) to the person that actually ...ah, well, you know what I mean.
So then, does she:
- Wear them as clean, since they were, (and double dried, tumbling playfully along with mine in the dry heat...sorry, lost my train of thought. Umm...
- Rewash them first, knowing where they’d been.
- Burn them in performing some West African exorcism ritual.
These are things that men of a certain age think about when they have way too much time (and panties) on their hands.
I do confess I'm already looking forward to my next wash day...