Saturday, June 27, 2009

Out of the Bag

All things San Fermin come to mind, we are focusing on and distracted by our preparation: the washing and ironing of white clothing, buying beads for bull earrings, organizing the arrival at our piso, calculating purchases of actimel on a Sunday, worrying about which pañuelo to wear.

I realized I couldn't put it off any longer, so those dirty shoes came out of the bag and the mysterious gray grime that had caked the side and bottom has been cleared off and cleaned up and this footwear is good to go for another filthy fiesta.

In a lapse of respectability, I actually had a job last week, running a workshop about cold water washing. At the event, I had the privilege of meeting a scientist who referred to himself as a bleach expert, and we had a lengthy discourse about getting tough stains out of white clothing. I told him a little tidbit we learned last year from a little old lady we talked to in the mercado. Dee Dee Sue asked her which of the laundry soaps she recommended to get the gray street filth out of the bottom of white pants and she told us her trick: wash with any laundry soap and a little Coca-Cola! A little secret there I was just ready to give away to the folks at P&G, but they didn't seem impressed.

I tried it after the fiesta last year, washing with the caramel-colored cleanser. Remarkably (I know, how could I doubt a Basque grandmother?), it worked.

And if the countdown to the Chupinazo isn't hard enough, a friend's photographs were featured in the New York Times blog, the Lens, further ramping up our anticipation.

It won't be long now. Ya falta menos.


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