Years ago, today would have been just the kind of day to start one's Spring Cleaning. I remember it well from my childhood. All the furniture that it was possible to move would be dragged outside the back door. The carpet would be taken up and draped across the clothes line. The curtains would be taken down and washed. Then the whole room would be cleaned.
Fitted carpets were unheard of, so there would have been either a wooden or a lino surround. This would be scrubbed and then polished. All the walls would be wiped down (my mother always tied a clean tea towel over a long-handled brush), and the ceiling, not forgetting to take down and wash the lamp shade (do you remember those bowls, which used to collect dead flies?)
Before it was put back the carpet would be beaten within an inch of its life. Then all the furniture would be wiped with a wash leather wrung out in vinegary water, dried and then polished with 'proper' polish. Paintwork, windows, skirtings and picture rails - all would be washed. Curtains ironed and re-hung.
By the end of the day the room would be straight again if the housewife had chosen a warm, breezy day on which to do her Spring cleaning. The smell of wallflowers in the garden always brings back to me the remembrance of a Spring cleaning day - because my mother's last act would be to pick a vase full of wallflowers from the garden and stand them in the centre of the newly polished table. Then should would shut the door, sit down and have a cup of tea. But every few minutes she would get up, open the door and peep in - just to give herself the satisfaction of seeing a job well done.
Me? Life goes on. My cleaning lady comes every Monday morning. The window cleaner comes once a month. About twice a year the farmer cleans the inside windows. Once a year I send the curtains to the dry cleaners. Does the house look or seem any dirtier? I don't know. I am too busy blogging to look around that much!
Stop Press** Female pheasant is sitting on the eggs outside the front door.