I’m somewhat conflicted. I’m vacillating between being responsible versus being irresponsible. Well, here’s my confession. You’ll hear it once so I get it off my chest. If a day in my life was divided up like a pie chart, I daresay my walking and writing have begun encroaching more and more into this pie of life (not to be confused with “Life of Pi”) … so, if you’ll pardon the pun, I’ve been cherry picking my chores. I do what is absolutely necessary – not always an admirable job, and defer the other pesky tasks ‘til tomorrow. I’ve learned to turn a blind eye to the little weeds in my sidewalk, or the ones that keep rearing their ugly heads through the mulch saying “pick me” or “pull me”, and I won’t even discuss the creeping and climbing choke vine which insists on overtaking the yard. Yup, I just put on my blinders. I once was meticulous about the garden, but now I hurry out the door, tripping along the sidewalk without a care in the world as I set out on a walk. Inside the house – well I know I could be doing a better job with my housework (which I hate almost as much as weeding), but oh well, here I sit typing away while I know that sadly I would not pass the “white glove test”. Hopefully on a scale of pass/fail I’d get a “pass” at least. I know that my mother is looking down from above with hands on her hips and clucking her tongue saying “I told you so” as she often told me housekeeping was not my strongpoint.
My mom was an immaculate housekeeper when she had good health and somewhat of a perfectionist. We used to do the big deep cleaning twice a year, in Spring and Fall, and for each of those seasons it encompassed every weekend for about a month until I protested that once a year would suffice. Spring cleaning and the start of yard work and the planting season just crashed into one another, leaving little opportunity to do anything pleasurable. I got my way and then I complained that Fall was our favorite season … a time to go for long drives in the country to enjoy Mother Nature’s palette, or buy apples or pumpkins or huge beefsteak tomatoes from roadside stands – anything but stay cooped up in the house doing cleaning chores. I made a valid argument and we negotiated Fall cleaning to occur in the month of August thus devoting every weekend through Labor Day to giving the house a thorough cleaning from top to bottom. We’d invariably argue about the top shelves in kitchen cupboards and taking out the good dishes and glasses to wash them when they were never used. I said “wash ‘em when you need them; we never entertain” … my point was taken and I prevailed. My biggest success was getting my mom to not wash dishes every night and to live with a rinsed-out mug or scraped plate in the sink when she went to bed. Mom mellowed out a lot in later years. (Smile)
So, when I left for my walk this morning thinking how liberated I was to leave the weeds and dust bunnies behind, I still had the nagging feeling of someone looking over my shoulder and wagging a finger at me. I went to Council Point Park and while traversing the trail saw some weeds there, which of course reminded me of mine at home. I lectured myself that there are other days and other ways to get the unpleasant agenda items dispensed with and it is more important to enjoy the special moments every day, no matter how simple the pleasure, and to always live life to the fullest. I was reminded of one of my favorite songs by Kenny Loggins which always keeps me grounded. I hummed it as I walked along and returned home feeling guilt-free and if not a bit footloose and fancy free as well. Here is “Return to Pooh Corner” by Kenny Loggins for you to enjoy too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9J5o1iVfAw