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A Dhobi………….

September 7, 2009

In honor of Labor Day in America, I want to spotlight a career in India that requires quite a bit of labor. The idea of a dhobi – neighborhood ironer – is amazing to me. Almost every (developed) neighborhood in Delhi has a dhobi. They usually park themselves under a tarp and iron all day long. Their iron is filled with hot coals and they toil away in the heat and humidity.  And they charge about 5 cents an item. Normally your order is completed within hours. Oh yea, and they will pick up and deliver. Now that is service.



11 Comments leave one →
  1. Pam permalink
    September 8, 2009 10:31 pm

    Oh, how I love ironed clothes. I do need a dhobi. I am one who still can’t go out the door unironed and I seem to be passing that on to my daughter. I love the smell of freshly ironed clothes and the feel. My mother taught us all to iron. She would have an ironing basket and board set up in the kitchen and would iron while on the phone or watching us swim.

  2. September 7, 2009 7:47 pm

    My mom always told me this story of how she was the one who had to do all the ironing for the family and how much work it was and she hated it. She had to iron everything because back then in the ancient olden days (rofl) there was no permanent press fabric or whatever. Every item in the house had to be ironed. One of the reasons I love tshirts and jeans is that they take such little effort to care for.

  3. Tottsmom permalink
    September 7, 2009 11:31 am

    I remember when I was younger my Mom would take the ironing to a lady. If I recall correctly she charged about 25cents a piece. I have often thought it would be nice to have someone to iron everything. I hate ironing, so I steam most of our stuff with a professional steamer. But some stuff you just have to iron. I try not to buy that stuff. lol

    • September 7, 2009 10:55 pm

      Yeah – I avoid buying anything that must be ironed – and I live by the theory that even if it is ironed when you put it on, five minutes later, not so much!

  4. Bee permalink
    September 7, 2009 10:27 am

    Oh how I miss my dhobi… bed spreads,curtains,undies,bring it on….

    • September 7, 2009 10:54 pm

      It just doesn’t pay enough to be a job in the U.S. but it is really too bad – I would love to have one of these stands in my old hood! 😎

  5. September 7, 2009 10:12 am

    Man, and I hate ironing, so much that I’d sooner go out wrinkled than do it. I would love to have a dobi of my very own.

    • September 7, 2009 10:53 pm

      Loco – I am with you – I did not iron in the states and I do not iron here – there are dry cleaners that clean and iron – but if you just need something pressed, you literally look around the corner. Unbelievable.

  6. Settlers permalink
    September 7, 2009 7:39 am

    Isnt it amazing? Also, labor day in India is celebrated on 1st May every year. But, it is not a holiday.

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