The ancient world.
Pompeii. This is a city that death caught in mid life. See http://www.pompeiana.org/.
Pompeii, fresco, face
Frescoes remain visible, some in strikingly good condition. The face remains vivid, although the rest of this fresco has faded. The technique is a painting on wet plaster, see http:// www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/6981/fresco
The ruins show ordinary lives, rooms, doorways, gardens, doorways opening into more doorways, views of interior gardens.
Pompeii, ruin of a house, many rooms
Where there are shops, there are also refreshment places. liquid and snacks offered to the shoppers, social
places to go.
Laundrymen in Roman times had their own patroness: the Goddess Minerva, symbolically shown as the owl. Pompeii also had its commercial laundry, where soiled clothing was arranged over a wicker cone, and a smudge pot of burning sulphur set beneath.
The laundry process. Smelly. See the magazine, Archeology Odyssey, March-April 2005 (this by way of update), see homesite at http://www.bib-arch.org/archaeology-odyssey.asp. At page 56, learn that urinals outside the establishment collect donations from pissers-by. That aromatic liquid is combined with potash from wood ashes, potassium carbonate; and hot water. Pour into tub, add clothing, and pay (slaves?) laundry workers to tromple about like on grapes, then comes the rinse, wring and dry in the sun.
Fuller's earth, or a kind of absorbent clay, like kitty litter? degreases the fragile items.
Then comes the carding, brushing up nap and then shearing it smooth again (razors on sweaters?). Pressing was accomplished by a vise, like your husband's trouser press possibly.
This is not an OSHA approved process. The fumes and toxicity produced infections, breathing ailments. Toga washing. Not for the faint-hearted.
How big is a toga? Very big. Perhaps 20 feet long, 10 feet wide. Patricians donned pure white togas, but lower beings wore lower-maintenance off-white. See "Going Clean", Togas Washed and Pressed, Archeology Odyssey.
We enjoy ruins, learning what the structures were. The common sense of old cultures - here are stepping stones to get across the street without mussing sandals in the muck, with space for wagon or chariot wheels in between. We are more alike than un-alike. Markets, art, recreation.