Laundry day can be a long period of dull-as-dishwater drudgery for someone without a washer and dryer in their home…someone exactly like me. Sure, you could catch up on some light reading or master the latest NYT crossword puzzle (I never could get past Wednesday), but most of the time you sit twiddling your thumbs while you watch the clothes go round and round in the dryers for what seems like an eternity. I have this theory that time actually DOES move more slowly when forced to watch the timers tick down on the machines and that, only when you walk away or become busy with another errand, will the timers return to normal and even pass more quickly. But what does one do?
I believe I have found a solution.
On Maple Street, there is an interesting old building that houses a laundromat and a restaurant both with the mystical, magical name of Babylon. I discovered that if I can get my seven loads started and swishing, I can go next door, enjoy a delicious lunch and be back in time for the drying cycle with a smile on my face and full tummy.
Although it doesn’t look fancy (how fancy could a place be while attached to a laundromat?), the food at Babylon Cafe (7724 Maple Street) is simply wonderful and the price is perfect for those dining on a budget. The last time I was there, I enjoyed their combination appetizer plate that featured stuffed grape leaves, Tabuleh (similar to a Greek salad), falafel. Baba Ghanoush (eggplant dip), hummus, yogurt and cucumber dip and a large basket of bread. You server will ask whether you desire pita bread or their own fresh, homemade bread…I highly recommend you select the latter.
The stuffed grape leaves are cooked perfectly with leaves mildly tart and tender enough to cut with a fork. I also really enjoy their hummus, the garlic-flavored chick peas mesh so nicely with the fresh warm bread…it is truly difficult to not eat the entire basket.
I always enjoy quick, friendly service during the lunch hour and before I know it, I am back on the other side shoving my clothes into the dryers and left with only 25 minutes to while away. After dining next door, it is nice to relax and zone out on the other patrons furiously folding their laundry while my fantastic lunch digests. Next thing I know, I am folding my dry clothes and packing them away for my return trip home.
Until next laundry day…