About six weeks ago, while doing my laundry in the basement, I noticed a pile of clothes someone had dumped in a laundry cart. The clothes looked damp, like whoever was cleaning them put them in hadn’t put in enough money to really get ’em dry. Someone else had needed the dryer and had tossed the half-dry clothes into a cart. As the days and weeks passed, I noticed the pile of clothes still sitting there, and figured they had been abandoned. (There are a number of apartments in my building which seem to host constantly changing itinerant folks, so my guess was the clothes belonged to a long-gone person.)
Cut to this morning, as I came downstairs to wash some of our linens. I’d been out of town for nearly two weeks, and the abandoned clothes were still there. For some reason, seeing them still there more than a month after they first appeared depressed me. I don’t know why, but after I put my clothes in the washer, I shook out the abandoned clothes and folded them. They were mostly sheets and towels, with three clothing items — a hoodie, a shirt, and a pair of pants — so it was a pretty quick job. Then I neatly stacked them on the laundry room folding table and went upstairs to my apartment.
Returning twenty minutes later to put my washed linens in the dryer, I immediately noticed that the abandoned clothes were gone! In six weeks no one in the building had touched them, but the moment I folded the clothes they were taken? It’s like someone had been waiting for me to make them more presentable! Was it the original owner? Someone else doing their laundry? Or a basement denizen I’ve never seen before? A mystery.
But the story gets weirder.
A half hour later, when I came down to the basement again to pick up my dried linens, I found another surprise. My laundry had been taken out of the machine and folded! Again, a mystery. Was it the same person who took the other clothes? Or a completely unrelated event? I may never know. But if this doesn’t prove the existence of karma, I don’t know what does.