Back to the Good Old Days

When we bought our house in AZ in 2010, we got a free washing machine. It didn’t come with the house, but Jen’s son-in-law’s aunt was getting a brand new one, and she was happy to get rid of her old washer. It worked fine, and we were satisfied. However, we had no dryer.

I began looking at Craig’s List and found an ad for a dryer for sale for a mere $75 dollars. That’s all we knew about the dryer. Well, that, and the fact that the seller lived nearby. We borrowed a truck, and went to pick up the dryer. Much to our surprise, the dryer was a complete match to the washing machine. Like twin appliances from a different mother appliance. What’s the chance of that?

A couple of years ago, Jen’s daughter and son-in-law bought a new house. During the interim between closings on the house they were selling and the house they were buying, they lived in our house. During the time they were there, the washing machine stopped working. Maggie called a repairman, who came out to look at the appliance. I don’t remember what was wrong, but the man told her it would be $300 to fix. She called us for advice.

My first reaction was to buy a new machine, and that’s what I told her. “Well, yeah, I can see your point,” she said. “But the repairman said that the new washing machines are not very good in his opinion. He recommends repairing Old Reliable.” (Well, she might not have called it Old Reliable.) We did what he suggested, and are still using both the washer and the dryer 10 years later.

I have a point. And I’ll bet you’re glad I’m reaching it.

You all know how enthusiastic I was when my brand new Kitchenaid Pro 600 arrived at my home. I couldn’t wait to use it. I made a couple of failed bread items. I made a batch of biscotti. And then last week, I made an attempt at another loaf of bread.

The dough mixed up perfectly. I put it in my mixer and inserted the dough hook. I turned it on the speed Kitchenaid recommends for kneading bread. I kneaded the bread four minutes. When I checked to see if it was kneaded enough, I decided a minute more would be helpful.

Alas, the mixer wouldn’t turn on. Nothing. Nada. No motor at all. The mixer wasn’t hot. It hadn’t made sad-sounding noises as it kneaded. It didn’t stop in the middle of kneading. It just wouldn’t turn on again.

I was very sad, though my bread turned out perfectly. Apparently four minutes was just right. But my beautiful mixer was a dud. That night, hours later, as I prepared to go upstairs, I gave it one more try. Boom. It turned right on.

The next day, I called Kitchenaid. After 56 minutes on hold, I got a live person. She grilled me like I was a felon. After extensive questioning, she agreed to send me a new mixer. “Unfortunately,” she said. “That particular mixer is on back order and won’t be available for two months.”

So, my point is, (and I know I sound like I’m 95 years old) the washer repairman was right: THEY DON’T MAKE THINGS LIKE THEY USED TO.

Yesterday, I made more bread. The same thing happened, up to and including that it turned on five hours later as though it hadn’t broken my heart a few hours earlier. I will limp along with my fussy new Kitchenaid until I get the new one, because what else can I do?

I know, I know. First world problems.

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