Thursday, June 07, 2012

One Towel Only, Today:

The fitness center where I swim provides a towel service. The towels aren't large but they are good enough to save me, and many appreciative members, the trouble of managing our own towels. My fitness center is almost the only one in our area that provides towel service. They ask us to limit ourselves to two towels per visit, because the service is so expensive. They have to buy towels and pay people to wash them, dry them, fold them and move them from place to place.

Last Monday a sign said: Temporarily, please use only one towel. There will soon be more towels.

That was a challenge for me. I need a towel to keep me from freezing in the A/C when I return to the locker room; that same towel to sit on in the steam room; a towel to dry with, after I shower; and a towel to step on so that when I change into my socks, I need not stand barefoot on the locker room floor. (Fungus, anyone?)

I can make two towels suffice for all this. That one-towel limit was onerous, but I managed.

A short, Spanish-speaking attendant came into the locker room to remove the bin of used towels. I wondered if he knew what the problem was. My brain told me not to bother. He wouldn't understand my question; I wouldn't understand his answer; he wouldn't know the problem. But I have gotten so used to chatting with strangers lately (at my 50th Reunion) that I plunged right in:
“What's the problem with the towels?”
He stared at me and said, “Dryer is broken.”

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