This week I’ve decided that I’m definitely over lockdown. I want my normal life back. The husband wants to go back to the office and the kids want to go back to school. The feeling is mutual.
Back at the ranch – to state the obvious I don’t actually live on a ranch – this week has been about garage clearance. I hired a skip. Now that’s a business model I’m interested in. It seems to be a licence to print money: a lorry dumps a massive empty container, you fill it (ie do all the hard work), the lorry returns to pick it up and you pay several hundred pounds for the pleasure. Less skip, more rip (off).
Anyway, the husband and I spent a large part of the weekend clearing our garage that is full of unopened boxes from our last two moves. There’s stuff which we have had no need for in the last seven years – and in some cases the five years before that –and although the majority of it is rotten, we still feel a strange attachment to it. The husband is considerably more nostalgic than me and would keep anything our children have ever touched if permitted. I am ruthless. I had dispatched the cot that emerged from the depths (too good for the skip) within one hour to one of the village people despite the husband’s protestations – ‘let’s keep it for the grandchildren’. After three months in lockdown with my three children, the mere mention of potential future grandchildren could tip me over the edge.
If the truth be told, the husband did the large majority of the hard labour whilst I sat on the ground and went through boxes filled with letters, cards and even diaries from when I was a teenager. It was quite a revelation. Not least because I wrote quite possibly the most astoundingly dull diary between the ages of 11 and 13 in which I listed what I ate for lunch every single day for two years. Perhaps I thought a food historian in 2121 might find it fascinating to see what a typical schoolgirl ate during the 1980s. Who knows but what is clear is that firstly lunch played a very central role in my tween life – liver and bacon (yuk) followed by spotted dick (yes really?) being a typical example – and secondly – take note kids of today – school food has come a long way since 1983.
Talking of food, I have now become the foremost dealer in home-grown lettuces in the South of England. Who would have thought that I would become a lettuce pusher? Beware, if you come within a hundred metres of me, you will have at least three lettuces pressed on you with the promise of more to come. My prolific lettuce production is of great concern to the children who are, without exception, salad dodgers. They are very suspicious of green food. It is now my mission to convert them to the dark side.