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Open House » Blog Archive » Fluff

Susanna Salk



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Thursday, June 7th, 2012

We all know that feeling when you first step home after a long day. The house and many of its members/contents have depleted in your absence. Plants seem wilted, animals hungry, children needy (or the other way around or both are both). Dinner needs defrosting, mail sorting-what’s that funny smell coming out of the dish washer? Forgot to pick up dry cleaning again and Zappos shoes that have been returned already once, still don’t fit. Deadlines loom upstairs like lonely dance partners. Juicy novels await on bedside tables like spurned lovers. A waft of bacon from this morning’s breakfast still floats through the house: it was cosy 8 hours ago and now its stale presence taunts you to replace it with chocolate chip cookies you don’t have the time to bake or a dinner you have no idea what to cook. All the while your lap top beckons like a lonely lighthouse on a rocky shore to come closer, sit by its glow…and stay a long while.
So often I cross my own threshold and think: I’d pay someone a million dollars to instantly set my little universe back on its axis.
But today was different. No different in the tidal wave of stuff that awaited me when I opened the door: in just 30 seconds I noticed a sea of wet towels on the floor, a dog toy was ripped opened on the lawn, its white guts snowing into the dry garden in clumps. A nice big fat bill by the phone waited like a troll under a bridge. My son skidded past and wanted to know what was for dinner. I hadn’t had a chance to eat myself all day. In the car were bags of groceries for a dinner party I was throwing for 15 strangers the next day for our local library and so on…bah, blah, blah.
Today I slowed down as I fluffed up my world. I don’t know why. Maybe it was thinking of someone who was suddenly told she has a tumor, or that our children are growing so fast it’s hard to remember what holding a baby feels like…whatever it was I suddenly reveled in my little daily tasks. Because in this crazy life where we have so little control, if we are lucky enough to be able to water our flowers, light candles for family dinner, fold warm towels out of dryer and breathe life into the home we have created and which now depends upon us in little and big ways, then this priceless thing can never be called a chore.