The Great House-clearing

Oh dear, what a hectic week this has been.

Early Tuesday morning the skip arrived delivered by a most helpful man who placed it precisely where it would be most easily reached by our small army of keen helpers.

We worked and worked until we halted for morning tea and a natter then onward until lunch. Let me tell you, what they say is true; any task will take double the time you have set aside for it. As it was with this. We had imagined the task would be completed by the early afternoon at most, however it took until evening before the final stick of decrepitude was dropped by exhausted arms onto the pile, ready for collection on Wednesday morning.

All of the pieces for auction had been collected the evening before by my friend’s man who deals with such things.

By the time the skip was filled there remained nothing to be sat or leaned or lain upon. Like a band of Brownies we arranged ourselves sitting crossed-legged, leaning against walls or sprawled across the carpet, itself destined for disposal by professionals in the morning.

Takeaway was phoned for and when it arrived we sat in near-silence eating, none of us with the energy to make conversation. I have promised the meal of a lifetime for our small group once things have settled a little. Pampering for all. We may even go for facials, something only one of our number has so much as tried before. She highly recommends it.

Wednesday’s great disposal of skip and carpet went as planned and was over in time for an early lunch with Audrey.

The afternoon was spent in a spree of visits to shop after shop in search of a new look for the old pile of bricks. We discovered far too many pieces to ever be practically fitted into my house so afternoon tea was spent poring over catalogues and brochures and photos from Audrey’s digital camera which she’d transferred onto what she called a tablet. Audrey is a fiend for gadgety things. She offered to explain it all to me but one thing must be dealt with at a time or I’m afraid I will drown in it all. House first, gadgety things after.

In the midst of discussing all of the gorgeous furnishings things came down with rather a bump when Audrey mused on how the new bits and bobs would go with the wallpaper and paint in my home. Of course, why had it not occurred to me before? The dreadful flower-patterned wallpapers and drab painted walls throughout the house would have to be addressed before a stick of furniture could be moved in.

How to deal with this new development? Audrey, ever the practical one, suggested I engage some painters and decide on a scheme and then stay with her while the work was being done. Of course I bridled at imposing on my friend but she’d have none of it. Her Robert had been gone for going on two years and she’d be happy of the company.

And so it was decided. The remainder of Wednesday was spent phoning painters and Thursday with meeting with them. I picked one and we agreed he could begin work on the eighteenth of this month. If things go according the man’s estimated time and my redecorating, the place should be ready in plenty of time for a glorious Christmas party for all of my friends and their partners various.

What an exciting time. Who could have known that my being left by my husband would be the most wonderful thing to happen to me in my whole life? Life is suddenly filled with delightful possibilities.

Until next we meet,

Kate.

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