I was struggling to get to sleep last night so I passed the time by pondering a very deep question:
If given the choice of a weekly visit from a hairdresser, cook or cleaner, which would I take?
Sleep grew even more elusive as I got carried away with the terms and conditions of this fantasy scenario (kind of like when you imagine what you’d do if you won the lottery. How to keep it private, how much is too much, how far out on the family tree do you go paying off mortgages, which charities would you donate to, would you buy a sports team… to the point where you decide being a pretend millionaire is too hard, just forget it.).
I settled on these criteria:
- Cook – they’d come round and prepare dinners and lunches for a whole week for the entire household. As wholesome or decadent as you please. They’d put stuff in the fridge and freezer so you’d only need to reheat or assemble.
- Cleaner – weekly clean of the entire house. Proper deep clean when needed. Laundry washed, ironed and put away. The oven and shower would SPARKLE.
- Hairdresser – I decided the equivalent of the above would be TWO visits a week because even with a whole can of dry shampoo I can’t make a blow dry last all week even if I just sat very still and didn’t leave the house. Cuts, colour or fancy do’s as required.
The cases for and against:
Pros – Meal planning and preparation takes up way too much of my brain space. Imagine not having to think about that, ever? I’d have more time to do my own freaking hair.
Cons – House is a mess.
Pros – A good blow dry can make one feel bloody invincible. Have good hair, will kick arse. It puts a spring in my step. Anyone else feel that way?
Cons – Wouldn’t ever want to cook or clean as it might muck up the hair.
Pros – A super clean and shiny house is so gloriously calming.
Cons – What’s for dinner?
At some point I finally fell asleep and don’t remember what I decided, but I do remember dreaming I got sent to prison.
I think my subconscious must still be pining for Natalie. Back in May I hired her to clean our bathroom and kitchen, just a one-off. Things were looking grotty after a few weeks of me being temporarily an arm down (post-melanoma surgery), and Gareth working insane hours (he is the far superior cleaner, by the way).
So I wanted to hit the reset button. Since The Mothership had started me on cleaning duties when I was about seven years old, getting someone else involved felt like such a decadent, rebellious thing to do.
The awesome Natalie showed up on her scooter, a satchel of products slung over her shoulder. Over the next three hours she totally transformed the two rooms. I didn’t think we were remotely filthy, but I never knew a room could be so freaking CLEAN. The stovetop gleamed, the rug was reborn, the bathtub was blindingly white, and she even carefully arranged the bananas into a smile on the fruit platter. It was miraculous!
My crafty plan was to not say anything to Gareth, and if he noticed I’d pretend I’d single-handedly scrubbed away. There’s no way it would even cross his mind that I’d get a cleaner; he has the same guilt thing going on as me.
He was suspicious as soon as he walked through the door. “What’s going on?”
“What do you mean?”
“Those tiles. They’re very shiny. Why are those boxes all stacked up so neatly?”
“Oh you know…. I moved some things.”
“That’s not like you? What are you up to? ”
He walked from the kitchen to the bathroom and back again.
“This is not your work!”
“AHH, YA GOT ME!”
Months later we still talk about what Natalie did with the bananas.