When I took that quick sniff I remembered hanging sheets, towels and family laundry on a clothesline and how sweet the sheets would smell after hanging in the sun to dry. At one house I had an old-fashioned clothesline with two "T" shaped poles and several lines strung between them. Another house had a modern clothesline; it was square in shape and would spin around. But my initial training with a clothesline goes back to my maternal grandmother.
My Mamaw had the old-fashioned clothesline, strung between the "T" shaped poles. Hers actually had several poles in between that would be used to raise the lines after the wash was hung up. Sometime during my teenage years she got an electric dryer, but I don't recall her using it (my mother did when we visited in the winters). During the summers I stayed with her, and even on visits in later years, hanging out the wash was a ritual that I always enjoyed. As a child she taught me how to hang the clothes, and I worked right along side her with no restrictions on what I could hang up. She would hang all the socks together, all the underwear together, all the shirts together, everything was hung up in orderly fashion. I also remember that just like while we washed the dishes we talked while we were hanging out the day's wash. I also washed my doll clothes and would hang them right along the human clothes. In the late afternoon we took the wash off the line (sometimes sooner if it looked like rain) and would fold the clothes and put them away.
Hanging out the clothes was one of those simple things, a necessity that had to be done over and over again. I never tired of standing at the clothesline, as a child or an adult. It was a chore, but it was an organized routine and when the job was done there was a sense of satisfaction that the chore had been done in an orderly fashion. Today I dry my clothes in an electric dryer, but my pillow goes outside to bring the laundry day scent into my dreams.