location scouting in Mumbai II
Next we scoped a living complex and Dhobi Ghat, where thousands of clothing items are washed from hospitals, hotels, etc. I stumbled upon an article by CNNGo iReporter Maya Sorabjee about the launderers and something about it was a giant eye roll- With a title ‘Mumbai’s Human Washing Machines’, she described their work as ‘the perfect place to take your camera and soak in the suds on a Saturday morning’. Recounted ‘being greeted by the alluring smell of detergent’ and going on to say that they ‘deliver every article of clothing in their vicinity with remarkable competence and calm and get them back to their owners by evening..it’s simply all in a days work.’ She got a few things correct, that yes, they do an excellent job cleaning clothes the old way in concrete wash pens. Though the ‘alluring’ detergent smell she mentions, are the chemicals that soak their arms, and what they often end up standing in all day, in the sun, for very little wage. They’re incredibly hard workers.