Sarah Ann Hall

Reporting on writing in progress or, more probably, not; practising flash fiction.

Excuse#15 Spring cleaning

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Last week we went down river to Hampton Court and moored at the end of the formal gardens. It’s a lovely spot to visit and usually we cycle into Kingston, meander over to East Molesey to dawdle around the shops, or take an evening stroll through the palace grounds, but not this time. Instead, with the sun out and the dry air, we’ve moved on to spring cleaning and painting.

The washing down of walls, furniture, pictures and ornaments usually takes a day per room, but not this year. Despite meticulous and generous dabbing of knotting solution, and liberal use of PVA, when we fitted out three years ago, knots and sappy grain are forcing their way to the surface in some places and it’s time for a re-paint. As well as being washed, all furniture was moved to allow access to the walls behind, and the dirt we found was quite disgusting. The semi-smokeless fuel we burnt last winter left a delightful grey dust over all surfaces at the time, but we hadn’t realised how far it had inveigled its way into the unseen nooks and crannies.

The study is now gorgeous once again: the glass-fronted bookshelves are gleaming; the paintwork is a nice reflective white; the wood has polished up beautifully; and the room has air to breathe as we’ve de-cluttered some books in the direction of the charity shop. It took four days. Whilst we could have been enjoying the sights and sounds of west London, we were inside scrubbing. Hubby has decided he needs a month’s rest before we tackle anywhere else, which is a pity as we destroyed the equilibrium of the workroom in the process. Its floor has disappeared under piles of ‘stuff to be sorted’, furniture has been moved about, and hubby is thinking of new storage solutions.

With the arrival of the jubilee weekend it’s raining once again, friends and family have been enjoying street parties and going on holiday. We’ve been out selling jewellery or, more accurately, watching disenchanted tourists drip past.

Written by Sarah Ann

June 4, 2012 at 9:55 am

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