Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin
Friday, 15 March 2013
Spring clean - but the full monty!
In our family we have a special expression for that feeling of being stuck: we call it "to be on a plateau". There are many occassions when one might feel this way: in parenting, in a new city, at your working place... Nothing moves, the air is leaden, something has to change, definitely...
When I feel stuck - and at the moment I do - the first thing I do (after sulking - contemplating to jack it all in - then thinking hard) is: creating order.
When I am speaking of spring cleaning (the full monty) I am not speaking of household alone.
As you know I have written a book about That - solely addressing young men, whispering into their ears the secrets of How to Do It).
No, when I say: the full monty I mean spring-cleaning for home, body, mind and soul. (Not that I do it necessarily in this order).
Today I stared at the snow on my balcony - ugh! - and howled at the pale sickle moon at night. And then I had enough.
Enough, Enough, Enough! Clapboard the third: Action!
1.) I went to my smashing Turkish hairdresser at the Alexanderplatz (only very young people there, all in black leather, tattoos and interesting haircuts) - and his knowing hands shampooed and massaged and then that wizard took his scissors and performed magic.
Never change a haircut when angry or sad, said wise Sophia Loren; and I didn't change it utterly (and as all my hairdressers before, especially the maestros, he flatly refused to dye). But I was very content with the result - thank you, Süley!
2.) I telephoned and now it is official: after the trip to the Chelsea Flower Show I will stay for almost a month in London. I'm looking forward to that (and how I prepare I will tell you soon).
3) I briefly thought about using house-cleaning method no. 3 from my book - the "Elizabeth-Taylor's-Who-Is-Afraid-of-Virginia-Woolf-emergency-cleaning", but rejected it - no, I wanted real spring cleaning (the rays of the March sun are merciless, on windows and face).
So I chose method no.5: I pretended to hire myself. (It helps definitely to watch before the DVD with Lucy Eyelesbarrow (Jill Meager), that paragon of household efficiency in 4.50 from Paddington (with Jane Hickson in Agatha Christie's Miss Marple, of course!)
When I hire myself I work like an employee - I take a timer after binding my pinny (by the way - did you notice how wide awake a lot of men become when you casually mention your interest in aprons? Really interesting subject, it seems. Try it!) - well, and then I work, with elbow grease- and when the timer says "pling" I stop. Unbind my apron, leave the house and return tomorrow - at the appointed hour.