Lockdown Blog 23: Progression…and regression

One of the great joys of this lockdown period so far has been that I’m becoming a better domestic creature. Over the past ten years, I’ve perfected (or at least I feel like I have) the dark arts of packing suitcases, travelling to airports, sleeping in different beds and navigating breakfast buffets. But keeping on top of my towel and bedsheet washing schedules while I’m at home? Punctiliously unloading the dishwasher? Watering my houseplants? These have not been my strengths. Fast-forward to the last six weeks, and it’s a different story. I’ve found myself assiduously fluffing sofa cushions and disinfecting kitchen countertops every night before I brush my teeth. I’ve made my bed as soon as I’ve got up every morning. I’ve sorted the almost unthinkable number of pens I’ve accrued and reduced my collection of shoes by a third. To me, this feels like real progress. My aim now is to emerge from quarantine as some sort of  21st-century Mrs Beeton, the proud owner of spotless home that functions like clockwork – and where there’s always a fresh loaf of banana bread. Watch this space.

As part of this process of domestic refinement, I’ve been FaceTiming my father every day and, after months of him persuading me that it would be an excellent idea, sorting all of  the belongings I’ve got left in my parents’ house. We started with 44 plastic containers, eight large items in the garage (predominantly furniture) and two clothes rails worth of what can only be described as ‘stuff’. About 5 hours later, that’s been whittled down to 15 boxes, taking me from the day I was born until the day I moved out. This, I promise you, is serious progress. It’s quite moving to discover some of the things that defined my childhood. It’s also mortifying to learn just how much ‘stuff’ you can accrue without really thinking about it. I’m making sure it all gets put to its best use – whether that means recycling, or giving things to charity, or otherwise. I’ll also make sure my father is richly rewarded for dealing with all the stuff physically, while I just told him what I wanted him to do from the other side of a screen.

While going through my belongings, I discovered a number of – ahem – video games that really defined my childhood. I had a string of Nintendo consoles in my room from about the age of 10 until I left for university, and there were certain games that were always top of the pile. It would be impractical for my father to send me any of the physical games right now, but I was thrilled to discover that Mario Kart now exists as an app! (I know, I’m getting older and slower at keeping up with technology.) Since we’re not using our King’s Singers iPads for performing at the moment, I thought it was best to make sure it stayed in working order by downloading the game (yesterday afternoon). Yes, I’m regressing to my 13 year-old self, insistent of completing everything track perfectly, to the detriment of so much else. At least I haven’t lost my touch, you’ll be pleased to know… 😂😂😂



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