Saturday, 26 February 2011

do we need a dishwasher?

Our dishwasher has died. Curse you, machine manufacturers. The Miele we inherited from Steve's ex mother-in-law (we are so progressive - and acquisitive) staggered on until it was over 25 years old. Steve managed to keep this latest going with bits of blu-tack and some sudden inertial shock tactics (kicking), aided and abetted by my de-calc attacks using vinegar and proprietary brands, but after six months of this ministration it now refuses to budge. We'd splashed out on a mid-range model by Bosch, it is just five years old.

We have started washing up by hand (something had to give). It hasn't been as bad as I expected. My memories of washing up are entangled with some of the worst rows I have ever had. Washing up with my siblings could stimulate disputes so loud that they were heard from the end of the road. Main bones of contention were disapproval of style. The order of washing up and the presentation to dryer uppers. Of course, to the washer upper the stacking of things to be washed is also important. So many things to row about. Then there's the matter of delivery of the washed items - should you dry several plates at once? Should the washed items be left to dry, and if so, who will put them away? Then of course there is the matter of whether the items are properly washed or not. Granny wisdom reminds us to wash the underside of the plate as well as the top. The order of washing is:

serving dishes
cooking pots, utensils and boards

Do you rinse or not, before washing and after washing?

You might imagine that using a dishwasher will eliminate all these subjects with such potential for dispute. Oh, no it doesn't. Do you rinse everything before loading the dishwasher? If you don't then the jets might get blocked. Who unloads the dishwasher? Is unloading enough, or does everything need to be put away? Is the dishwasher a storage area? You certainly need more crockery if you're using one - and if it gets completely unloaded, before reloading, then you need more storage area outside the dishwasher.

So handwashing looks like an attractive option, as long as violent dispute can be avoided. 

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