It’s a story about loss, and heartbreak. A tale of longing and hours pined away wishing to see someone again…. If only for one last scrub down and polish.
I have a dear friend who’s idea of a good time is spring cleaning her house. Messed up, huh?
Apparently, there are many people like this out in the world but I – me, moi – am not one of them.
I am not a natural born housekeeper, and it was only after flatting with this person, who shall remain nameless but whose name may rhyme with Schmichelle, for a number of years in my early 20’s that I was truly housebroken in the custodial arts. A year with her and I was down with regular sheet changing, shower scrubbing and her favorite mantra -
“If you have time to cook in the kitchen, you have time to clean it”
Which was approximately the polar opposite of my mantra at the time which was -
“If I ignore it long enough, someone else might clean it for me” – ie: Shcmichelle.
Ultimately, I’d say that living with her has made me the housekeeper I am today, but I am by no means known as a fastidious scrubber (except in some circles but that is for a different reason). The thing is, I do love a clean, tidy, sparkling house. A house that not only doesn’t have piles of tumbling papers, and toys, made solely of sharp corners, strewn around the floor just waiting to pounce under your unsuspecting foot in the night, but also a house that doesn’t have not-so-secret grime built up in the corners, and dust on the tops of the picture frames and crumbs, oh, the endless crummy crumbs, everywhere.
It’s quite the dilemma. It would seem that when I do spend a couple of hours rectifying the carnage, it is merely a matter of minutes before it explodes back to its former apocalyptic state.
When Mister H and I first got together, he had cleaners. He loves a clean house but is a rather messy man, just quietly. I am not being disloyal by giving this fact away, it is simply the way it is. I try, and try, to change his spots, but alas, a leopard my man remains.
Anyway, I digress. I really loved the cleaners.
Simon and Jenny were lovely people who were always very smiley and happy and we had very rudimentary chats, invariably involving charades, as they’re English wasn’t that crash hot, and my Mandarin is worse. I’d bake for them at Christmas, or give them a jar of jam when I’d made a batch.
We were buddies in my eyes.
At this juncture, I feel it is very important for me to add the fact that, although lovely, they were actually fairly shitty cleaners. They would just dust the fronts of things, leaving the backs to gather enough dust that you could knit a sweater for a small dog (as long as he didn’t have asthma), and cleaning Mister H’s bookshelf just seemed to elude them. Perhaps they had some form of Bachelor Bookshelf Blindness, and the more imposing and unattractive a piece of bachelor furniture it was, they couldn’t see it?
Then, one day it happened.
They asked for a pay rise. I was all for it.
Ten bucks more? Yeah, guys, sure thing, but would you mind, please, taking extra care with the dusting, particularly around the bookshelf?
(insert chirping crickets here)
Nada for two whole days and then this….
We don’t want to come anymore. Your keys are in the letterbox.
Just like that, we were dumped.
It was over.
Wendy Harmer recently said if you can’t clean your own house it’s too big for you, or some such blasphemy.
Is she on drugs?
I’ve spent the last two years pining for those guys. I didn’t realise how much I loved them until they were gone.
I’ve exhausted the last two days scrubbing the house as it was getting
completely a little festy in the corners, and let me tell you, when I was on my hands and knees scrubbing that shower with Mister H’s toothbrush, I really pined for them and the smell of bleach and Pine-o-Clean that trailed in their wake.
If only I’d been less fussy about cleanliness – more like I am now, really – then perhaps all of this longing and heartache could have been avoided.
I vow to you all, my friends, one day I shall have a cleaner again. Mark my words….One. Sweet. Day.