The Laundry Chute
(Life History Stories)
When I was about 5 years old we moved into a house that my dad built on Lyn Rae Square in Mesa, Arizona. It was a 2-story brick colonial with white columns and a large yard.* It was a lovely home, and I'm sure I would appreciate the decor and well-designed floor plan now as an adult, but my 5-year-old self remembers the really cool things.... like the laundry chute in the upstairs bathroom.
The laundry chute was meant as a convenience for my mother (and I suppose for us kids too), magically making the dirty clothes from upstairs appear almost instantly downstairs in the laundry room. (I think my dad is probably the one who included this feature, because I suspect my mom would have just put the laundry room itself upstairs.) Rather than seeing it as a convenience, my sisters and brother and I used it as a means of entertainment, such as sending toys and other items on a wild (but short) ride to the ground floor.
I'm sure my older siblings have more frequent (and more accurate) memories of the laundry chute adventures, but I specifically remember wiggling down it myself on a particular occasion. It was meant to be exciting but was rather frightening, though I imagined I would land on a soft pile of (dirty!) clothes.... which wasn't there. Either it was "laundry day" and my mom had already retrieved all our soiled duds, OR (more likely) they were lying on the floor of our bedrooms. At any rate, it wasn't a pleasant experience and I never journeyed through the laundry chute again (I must have been of above-average intelligence to have learned that lesson so quickly), though I do recall urging some of my younger siblings to do so themselves.
* My family always refers to this home as "The Two-Story House" for a couple of reasons; 1) it's the only house my parents ever built that had an upper-story, and 2) we lived for many years in another house on the same street which had a basement (so it was "technically" 2-story), but no upper-story, so that's how we differentiate between the two. "The Two-Story House" also had a basement though, so I guess technically it would be a 3-story house?