Housekeeper’s Diary

By Alison April 5, 2023 No Comments 5 Min Read

Well now, it’s as though I was ambling through a quiet Winter apparently destined to last forever and then boom, Spring arrived and life started running amok. AMOK I tell you!

I’ve been hither and thither, with people in and out the house, a child back from university with what must surely be all seven of his flatmate’s laundry, a garden that looks like a jungle and a house apparently determined to do her own thing and showcase her shabby side as if chaos was all the rage.

I’m not sure how all this happened really, other than I started saying yes to invitations.
(Because the daffodils popped out the soil and there is washing on the line. Because the clocks sprung forward and my heart opened up just a tiny little bit).

I started saying yes. To dallying around towns unknown and enjoying happy, pressure free dates in a cozy pub with someone unexpected. To my own invitations to wander local lanes, to take myself out on coffee sojourns, and have breakfast in gorgeous vegan cafes with old friends. And to staying up until stupid o’clock watching Wrestlemania with Finn. To all of it. Because the sun is shining and I’m no longer so cold that even venturing into the kitchen feels like a big ask.

(Imagine who I could be if I wasn’t quite so nesh).

But oh yes, things are bad domestically. So bad in fact that the man next door saw fit to stage an intervention and called around today armed with a chainsaw and a bin to deal with the wild hedges because I am a woman who remains terrified of garden appliances and can only imagine a bloody massacre were I let loose with a chainsaw. Or a strimmer. Oh hell yeah, I reckon I could be dangerous with even the meekest of strimmers. Films would be made about The Burscough Strimmer Massacre and I would earn a place on many a true crime Tic Tok as the woman who went mental and lost her mind with the Black Decker.

But for those things that don’t require mechanical intervention, there is no excuse for being the big disgrace I have suddenly become, no excuse at all beyond the fact that I’ve gone a little Springtime giddy. Let’s consider giddy a Martha style Good Thing, while simultaneously drawing my attention to the fact that if I carry on the way I am I will be living in a midden, spinning happily around the bags of clutter I still haven’t taken to the tip (I’m scared of the tip too: tis a terrible thing to be besieged with fright by the purely practical) and pretending the house isn’t collapsing around my preposterously deaf ears. For it has long been true that if the house is too tidy. my mind is probably in a muddle, whereby when happy comes a calling I loosen my grip on excessive domestic hygiene in the skip of a giddy heartbeat and give it all up in favour of breakfasts of chocolate Greek yoghurt and channelling Miley Cyrus dancing about while she shouts about being able to buy her own flowers.

Music is my bestest friend now. While the neurodivergent element of me means my repertoire is limited to those songs I can find meaning in (I remember being astonished once when my lovely Kath, a musician, told me she didn’t really hear words in songs, and I had to resist dissecting how a person becomes deaf to the poetry of a song while fully failing to understand that to her the music must be language itself), and I probably drive everyone else nutty playing the same songs on repeat, I am frankly never happier than when I’m agreeing with the Arctic Monkey man, that we really should Snap Out of It as I run a duster over anything standing still, pop another bit of nonsense on Facebook marketplace and a salt and pepper almond (current culinary obsession) into my mouth.

Music, a man who is asking nothing at all of me so I haven’t got that immediate, overwhelming sense to shut him out but can let a friendship I have so far resisted, be what it will be (hopefully without hurting him as I have done too often in the past few monthsfor yes let’s add relationships to strimmers and recycling centres on the list of THINGS I WANT NOTHING TO DO WITH) and a messy house, not helped by the fact that my boy-child keeps such outrageous hours, (apparently living his days upside down), while eating me out of house and home at three o’clock in the morning so the poor cat is wandering about propping his eyes open with matchsticks and we are going through a ridiculous amount of air-fryed Heck sausages as this seems to be the nineteen year old midnight snack of choice.

Today then. An early morning trip into Southport for various lares and household penates. Returning with those tiny little face razors and a new bottle of Retinol and quite forgetting the green garden bin bags I set out to buy. And now, home again to a collection of bobbles and scrunchies the cat has gathered from Finn’s room and scattered all over the living room floor, and half an hour to be spent cleaning because there’s only so much domestic abandonment I can comfortably fling around without feeling like the police might be on their way to arrest me for crimes against the laundry basket. A brunch of dippy egg and asparagus and too many coffees to count. And later, when Finn takes Rebekah into Liverpool for a rainy day out, a long, indulgent afternoon bath, for during what I have elected something of a week off, I’m not sure there is anything quite as luxurious as doing something totally for me.

Later, an hour with a book a cup of tea and a saucer of not very fun at all protein cookies, then True Romance, because Finn and I are on a Quentin Tarantino odyssey and then an early night because little Missy here seems to have decided she has the energy of a teenager when frankly she has nothing of the sort and is really rather half dead so needs to SORT HERSELF OUT.

So yes: a weekend full of self-care. A haircut tomorrow. A slight fringe, and more layers. Long baths as above. Friends old and new. Quiet hours in the company of books. And something of a detox because I feel a little pickled by carbs and sugar and need to bring my body back into alignment with my ambitions, because a person mustn’t get giddy in the calorie deficit department, even when the Easter Bunny is likely to come a-calling.

A quiet focused weekend to get my head pointing the right way. And who knows? I might even go the tip. Stranger things have happened, don’t you know? I’m running AMOK!

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