Saturday, December 14, 2013

The Table of Doom is dead...

...long live the, er, drawers of doom?

But before all that...I had a phone call on Thursday night from an old friend. One of those people you hear from a couple of times a year and it's just easier to chat and/or put them up for a night than try and convince them you're not really interested in keeping in touch. When I first moved here he would love coming to Dusseldorf to visit and maybe go and visit his mum in Holland for a day or so while he was here. I've managed to get things to the stage where he goes to visit his mum and at some stage rings me to tell me he's on the way back home and was thinking of stopping off to see me on the way. So he told me he'd be heading back on Saturday, I told him I would be at a concert for about an hour at six o'clock so he either had to come before that or after half-seven or so. He phoned on Friday to confirm that he'd be here (with brother in tow) at eight o'clock on Saturday evening. It's now after eleven and no sign of them. Yep, these are the type of friends you can really do without.

At any rate, knowing that something like that was a possibility I did struggle with myself a bit but I still decided to try and stay positive and use the threat of people coming to stay to tidy up a bit. Something I have been spectacularly failing at recently. So after being up early for therapy, having a quick wander around the christmas market (really quick because I thought they opened at 10 but they didn't actually open until 11 and so there were only two stalls to look at) and then a stop off to buy bread, I got home, put the mincemeat that I mixed up yesterday into the oven to cook (trying out Delia Smith's recipe), put a CD of christmas songs on and got stuck in. It might have taken me four hours, but I made good progress.
Some of it was just moving stuff around, to be perfectly honest, but I had to start somewhere and at least now I have cleared a decent space, which makes tackling the rest seem just that little bit easier. Here's a photo I took last week - still want to put up a proper before of the sitting room and bedroom but for now, here's some of the worst of the sitting room. And, drum roll please, I fully cleared off the Table of Doom.

Which is to say that I cleared off and tidied away all the big stuff and after moving things around a bit used the top of a chest of drawers to stack the last of the papers that need to be sorted. It's a very doable looking pile though (at the right-hand side of this photo) and I'm going to try the whole five-a-day procedure again to get it cleared as quickly as possible. The important thing now is to not add to it. And that the table is fully clear of stuff at least once a day.

So, with a much tidier (although still a long way to go to normal) sitting room, about two tonnes less dust in the place and clean sheets on the bed, I think it's just about time for me to call it a good day and head to bed. Tomorrow I'm singing with my choir in our advent concert and given that I might end up being woken in the middle of the night, depending on whether my "guests" actually do turn up or not, I'll need my sleep.


Fiona said...

Woohoo! That is awesome! It feels so good to reach a target like that :)

PS. Love Teddy in the "before" pic!

Moonwaves said...

He's still there, don't worry. LOL My dad bought that teddy for me one year when he brought me into town with him at christmas and there were stalls on Henry Street selling them. I have no idea why he needed to be in town (he almost never did as far as I knew), really no idea why I went with him on my own (it tended to be four or us or none of us accompanying our parents places) and I can't even remember what year it was. I think I was seven or eight. I hugged that Teddy to sleep every night for years and years. He was first on my list of cuddly toys (yes, I used to make lists for fun when I was a kid). Then my nieces and nephews used to play with him sometimes when I was older. When I was getting the sitting room painted early last year I took the two bags of toys I had down from the top of the cupboard and I don't want to just put them back up without sorting through so they've just been sitting on the floor since. At some stage I started to feel bad about Teddy being face down all the time and I decided he should be able to see what's going on the in world so he's been sitting like that ever since. And does get an occasional cuddle, too 'cos hey, who doesn't like cuddles. :-)

Anonymous said...

Whether your guests did come to visit you in the end, you have a nice achievement of getting your table cleared and that feels good :)

I feel pretty strongly now about letting people (excluding family and close friends of course) stay longer than one night with us. This year I had a few occasions where I felt I was asked in a way where I didn't have much of an option in the matter - either by putting pressure on me to make a snap decision or by telling me that it's too late for them to get a cheap hotel. At the end of the day it's my home and not a "free place to crash" as it was treated particularly by one set of visitors :( And the cleaning before and after! Not in 2014!

Enjoy the Christmas markets - they come and go so fast!

Moonwaves said...

They never did. And still no phone call to explain their absence either. I was prepared for them to turn up hours late (based on previous experience) or to get a phone call at a late hour saying that they weren't coming after all but this is a new one. Rather than phoning around frantically trying to find them or imagining the worst I've actually been very zen about it. Didn't especially want them to come, used it as positively as I could to get something done I've been putting off for ages and was actually really glad this morning to wake up and just have the place to myself. I had to purposely keep myself from falling into the trap of resentment of them spoiling my enjoyment of a nicer, more cleared living space but have managed that I think. I bought bread and cold cuts in case they wanted feeding but didn't do anything silly like lay things out nicely in waiting for them so now I just have a fridge full of food for lunches next week rather than a bin full of gone off food that ungrateful idiots never turned up to eat - it's all about the attitude! (and the very lovely evening I've just spent with out discovering a new restaurant with friends after singing in a concert and then attending another (this time English) carol service).

Emma Watts said...

Hi Moonwaves, I feel your frustration with guests that don't show but the rudeness of not even calling is in fathomable. I've been in that situation far too many times before, tidied house, planned and bought food. I do agree that sometimes it's the push we need to tackle stacks of clutter so I don't see that as anything but a gain. It's the failure to recognise the pre and post clean effort and extra expense that irks me. Anyway well done for not dwelling and realising that values and respect differ so greatly. I've made a point of telling friends that have done this to me during 2013 of my disappointment in their bad manners. I also requested that the said few telephone before setting out otherwise I assume their not coming. Enjoy your concerts this week and continue with your tasks x

Moonwaves said...

Thanks for visiting Emma. I'm feeling fairly proud of myself for handling it so well actually. It is frustrating but also not the first time I've had experiences like this with these particular people. Other times I've been frantic, trying to contact their mother to make sure they left, wondering if something has happened and that kind of thing. This time I've just let it go. I know I would have heard if there was any problem or accident and it's just down to severe lack of manners (and potentially an entire family with narcissistic personality disorder although I try not to armchair diagnose too much!). If I'm not worth their consideration though, well then, they're not worth my time or worry. Onwards and upwards - too many good things happening in my life at the moment to waste any of it on them!