Thursday, October 29, 2015

Day 29: Don Limpio (Mr Clean)

It´s Superman! No, it´s Spiderman! No, wait, it´s... Don Limpio!

I´ve been watching all month, hoping to see someone rappelling down the side of a building, and finally on the third-last day, one caught my eye.

According to Spanish E-How, "the job of a window washer can be very exciting and well paid. From the 50th floor of a building, the window washer likely works with a partner and they share amazing views. However, working on scaffolding and with other elevation tools, it is one of the most dangerous jobs out there. If you decide to pursue a career in window washing, prepare to face regularly all types of weather and dangerous conditions."

Wow. It really does sound like a job for a super hero. Enter, Don Limpio, what the Spanish call Mr Clean. 

Lower floor windows are usually washed by "regular" cleaning assistants. They clean everything, including windows, both inside and out. Hourly, they can´t charge as much as a dedicated window cleaner, especially if he or she has completed certification with the International Window Cleaning Association. I had no idea that was a thing! Smart idea - you wouldn´t want to get all the way up to floor 112 only to realize you didn´t know how to make your washing cart go back down... Also, the higher the floors, the higher the charge, up to 25 euro an hour. 

This is a job that doesn´t get thought about unless you actually see someone doing it, or it hasn´t been done. Who goes around noticing streak-free windows? Dirty ones, yes, they get a comment or two. For businesses, it´s about good showcasing. Who would window shop through streaky windows? For homes, it´s about good housekeeping and the satisfaction of having the sun filter in without reminding you of a task you´ve left undone.
This window washer was checking the sealing along this glass encased elevator at El Corte Inglés on Serrano in Madrid. Note rooftop café. There is also an indoor space on the floor below, where, when the weather is not the best, you can enjoy some pretty sweet city views through streak-free windows.

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