Ask around for someone to wash your clothing—nearly every Gambian
has a mother/sister/aunt/wife that will do your laundry each week,
for a small fee. You usually will have to buy soap from a local
shop to hand over with your load. The price for a laundry load
of about a dozen pieces, including socks, should be around £1.50,
and includes hand washing, air drying, and ironing. You will have
to wash underwear and bras on you own—a good place to do this
is in your bathroom sink, the larger bathroom sink at the end
of your hall, or a bucket bought from the market. Clothesline
and clothespins can also be bought from the market or most supermarkets.
Before someone washes you laundry by hand do ask them whether
they will wash your underwear. The reason is that some washerwomen
don't do this out of tribal beliefs. This should not be a problem
in many of the larger tourist hotels as they tend to use industrial
washing machines, sub-contract the work or staff you are prepared
to do this.
Women who wash your clothes and other chores are called Mbindan,
or specifically faoutcat. When you want your clothes
washed you say "Dama booga faout suma yere yi".