If you are not aware of my current destructive mode, please do scroll down to ‘Broke’ to enjoy the full flood of bits dropping off, assisted by your truly.
Yesterday I excelled myself.
I washed my son’s passport.
Easycare 30 degree machine wash, two rinses, no fabric softener, seeing as you ask.
I became aware of the problem when the second load was in the machine, about half past nine. The S&H, amazingly out of bed at this unknown hour of a Sunday morning, came hurtling down the stairs with a turn of speed I was unaware that he possessed. ‘Have you washed my jeans?’ he inquired, displaying a hitherto unacknowledged interest in the process of laundering his garmentry.
For a while he stood before the washing machine, lost in thought, transfixed, in danger of being whisked away to the alternate universe of odd socks, until my remembrance of things passed (i.e the first load awaiting hanging out in the snow flurries) sent him scuttling off to the cheerful yellow laundry basket to rescue the cheerful pink and blue mottled lump that was formerly his passport.
Like a geriatric swimmer with a hand towel it was crinkled and terribly wet.
He accessed the relevant webpage of the passport service’s information almost instantly, as the youth of our times is wont to do, wondering if there would be any help at all.
And for lo, there was lots.
Washed passports are not even considered to be destroyed. There was a list of criteria for destruction and it didn’t fit any of them, which was just as well, as I’d rashly offered to buy a substitute before I discovered they cost £80.
I know you want to know why he had a passport in his pocket, with yer average shekel being so thin on the ground here that the promise of a holiday is in the ‘likely’ box with alien invasion and full employment. It’s because he has my genes. I was asked my age in a pub when I was 21 and regularly thereafter in similar circumstances until I retired from the social scene in favour of motherhood at 30. Also, now he has gone bald and been retired for 10 years, people have stopped asking his father his age too. We have all been asked by people coming to the door if our Mummy is at home, dear. The only group able to penetrate the mystery of our true ages seem to be double glazing salesmen. I have been known to preface conversations with reminiscences of the 1950s, to save time later and him indoors has a good line of bluster and jokes. The S&H, a person of fewer words than his parents, simply took to walking round with his passport; being a computer installing nerd, he is quite practical, sometimes.
The washed passport lay in the airing cupboard, which had been emptied for the purpose, all day. After a further spell in a basket on a radiator each page is a wiggly wonder but still intact.
The real wonder is that they make them so resilient. I know why, of course. It’s so that when your cruise ship goes down just a whisker off shore and the captain skips off, when they find your cold dead geriatric corpse and cannot identify you from your cruise clone kaftan and stretchy pants, they will know you from your soggy but surviving passport photo, clutched in your wrinkly fingers, finally moisturised right under the cuticles with sea.
This is also, naturally, why you are not encouraged to smile when having the photo taken. For the most instant recognition you should attempt to look bloated and a bit miserable with really bad hair, which is, coincidentally, the way you look at the end of a long haul flight, too.
At present the passport is under a stack of books but if it is not sufficiently destroyed when we retrieve it, I shall iron it later, thus giving me the opportunity to set fire to it too.
Got anything you want trashing? At all?
JaneLaverick.com – armed and dangerous. Also legged and running away.