Neglect, n.

Neglect.  As in My blog has fallen into a state of neglect.  I haven’t written anything. It has accumulated spam comments (now deleted, I hope).  There are real comments, including some from Reluctant Memsahib, one of my favourite reads, and I haven’t responded.   I’ve been busy. I’ve been away. I have lots of excuses.  I don’t really like excuses, though.   My sister has taken me to task. “Why doesn’t your blog work? It won’t load” she asked.   I think it’s sulking.

It’s not that there’s a shortage of material.  The holiday, for instance, is begging to be told.  Stories about the fading American lady in Fiji Continue reading

The guilt complex

We’re the type of household that gets sacked by cleaners.  You’d think that, working from home, I’d have all the time in the world to keep the house immaculate.  When the children were babies, people used to comment about how lovely it must be to sit and work at home whilst the darlings played happily by themselves, slept on command, gurgled contentedly in their moses basket next to the desk and didn’t start screaming the moment the phone rang.   They went to a childminder.

These days, I dream of waking up one morning to find that not only have I turned into a tidy, well organised person but that the children have suddenly become helpful – “Let me do that, Mum” – and that GPD  has figured out the purpose of the toilet brush.  But, as the first anniverary of last year’s cancer diagnosis approaches, I find myself having to admit that I have recovered from recent traumas rather better than my oven.  Broken ankle? You try cleaning an oven with your leg in plaster.  Hysterectomy? That central line of staples really didn’t help.  Chemotherapy?  OK, you get the idea.  I have tried to restore order, but have had to recognise that there are some jobs noone else is going to do for you.   Not unless you pay them large amounts of money, that is.

Which is why I finally cracked Continue reading

Life is too short…

…to iron boxer shorts.  I had thought that this was an activity restricted to mothers-in-law until a few months ago when I spotted my sister-in-law brandishing the iron over a pile of unsuspecting boxers.  Apparently her husband expects crease-free boxers. Personally, I’d just show him where to switch the iron on but then my housekeeping standards do leave something to be desired. 

I had planned to write this as a lead-in to a meditation on working at home, following a piece on Mother at Large .  That will have to wait, however, as I found myself indulging in something altogether stranger yesterday evening – Continue reading

Progress report

I had a bath this morning!  More information than you need, perhaps, but it was thanks to the arrival in the post yesterday of a Limbo.  It works! It’s wonderful! So thank you to Fearghal and Liz O’Neill for recommending this.  I then managed to get myself downstairs (we live upstairs) and along to the store for milk and a paper, all by myself. And back again, of course.  It’s these little things that mark the daily improvement and reassure me that I will not be like this for ever!  I have also started working on the mountain of seabed samples that are currently cluttering up the back yard although I can only sit for a certain length of time at the microscope with my foot down before said limb demands to be raised above hip height for a while.  It is definitely not possible to work at the microscope with my foot in the air.  Progress on the sample front is slow, but at least it has begun.

Meanwhile, having cancelled all my fieldwork for June, Continue reading