It must be the way we load the dishwasher that causes it to back up every few weeks.
I opened it up tonight to find the pan at the bottom of the washer floating with soapy water. It's never a happy sight.
The first time it happened, I had to wait three days for the GE repairman to arrive and inspect the damage. He was a muscular man - really muscular actually - with great knotted arms and jet black hair.
"Moses," he said in answer to my greeting. I took that it was his name; I assumed he wasn't kidding me.
I watched carefully as he disassembled the stalk and the spinning arms of the washer and removed the (all too porous) strainer from the base of the pan. After several minutes of fishing with his thick fingers, he retrieved a round yellow dollar store happy face sticker (still bright and shiny) with a cut piece of asparagus attached to it like a mast to a sail.
"Kids," he said laconically and put the little trophy on the counter for me to consider while he packed and readied to leave.
I tipped him heavily (it seemed the only sane thing to do) and took notes on the procedure after he left.
Since then, after discovering my fingers are shorter than Moses', I've kept an unwound wire hanger from the dry cleaners in the cabinet next to the sink. After the phillips head screwdriver I use to replace the plastic safety catches on the cabinet doors that my son regularly breaks (he's determined), its the most used tool in the house.
Tonight it took about 5 minutes of angling in the waters to get the hanger to do its work. It always feels like a miracle when the drain kicks in and empties the water. I could swear I hear the angels sing above the sound of the machine.
And every time I say the exact same little prayer of thankfulness.
Thank you Moses.