I am staying in a B&B in Sicily. While the overall facilities are quite clean, I made a big mistake when I used the washer in my apartment. As it turned out, it hadnt been cleaned in quite awhile, although I actually went over the "innards" where the clothes go with Lysol wipes. When I took out my clothes (which were still soaking wet after 3 hours), 1st, what looked like a cockroach leg fell off a pair of socks; then I realized the clothes were actually dirtier than when I put them in; and then I saw something that might - MIGHT - have been an egg.
The management was very sympathetic and helpful. I explained my fear of bringing bedbugs (or anything else!) back to the US, and they took the clothes out and put them in a bag and got them out of my apartment. I told them to just throw them out (fortunately they were all whites, and while not cheap, at least not from Macys).
This morning, I opened my door, and there was a boutique shopping bad containing all my whites - laundered and apparently ironed.
When I asked about the process they used to clean them, I was told they were washed just like everything else at the hotel: they were literally boiled (washed at extremely high temperatures), and then dried in the sun. I am not certain if they were ironed. But one of the folks who works here told me "Theres no way anything could survive the wash your clothes got."
I took the bag out on the porch with 2 huge Ziploc bags, and began inspecting every piece of clothing. I did not find any insect parts, or anything that looked - to my eyes - like an egg. They certainly looked clean (cleaner than I ever got them!) After inspecting each item, I put it in one of the bags, sealed the bags when I was done, and placed them on newspaper in the entryway to my apartment, far from everything.
I never saw a bedbug; when I moved in, I checked the entire apartment for bedbugs and their eggs and found nothing; and the idea of throwing out what might be perfectly good clothes which will have to be replaced, doesnt sit well with me. But neither does the possibility of having my life turned upside down when I return to the States.
Has anyone had an experience like this? Does anyone have any insights into just how effective an industrial strength wash at scalding temperatures would be at eliminating bugs, bed- or otherwise?
I would greatly appreciate any feedback. I leave tomorrow at 5 am, so I have to decide what to do quickly: pack them in my suitcase (which is all zipped up on the other side of the apartment) or throw them the Hell out.
P.S. I know this has nothing to do with Sicily, but I had to choose a location in order to post for some reason.