Karen, a new neighbour, came for a visit last week. She was shocked when she saw my kitchen ! I have no dishwasher, and I prefer to wash dishes by hand.
Karen is also a retiree, who has recently arrived in rural Newfoundland from Ontario. We had coffee ; people from the mainland seem to prefer coffee over tea. We enjoyed an interesting conversation, noting the joys of seaside living.
She asked me how I manage without a dishwasher. I explained that as a young mom I had had one, but I have discovered the meditative joys of hand dishwashing. The detergent I use is unscented, derived from plants, and has none of the harsh ingredients found in dishwasher detergents.
Hand dishwashing can be a mindful, relaxing activity. I enjoy the feeling of warm water on my hands , the feel of the dishes, and the little soap bubbles. It can be a stress relieving activity, as we focus only on the present.
I assured Karen that I read Martha Stewart’s guidelines on how to properly sanitize dishes when washing them by hand. I explained that we use less hydro this way, and we will not send a broken dishwasher to the dump one day as more toxic waste.
I shared with Karen that I also pray when I wash my dishes, thanking God for a home, running water, ample food , and a funny husband to share meals with.
I told Karen that lots of information is available online on the health benefits of washing dishes by hand.
Karen knows that she is welcome to visit anytime, and does not need to knock. The kitchen is the most important part of the house in rural Newfoundland.