It’s another snowy day and, while Maywood Man braves the elements to keep tractors running, slays a tree for firewood, and plows us out, I need to do something more than read by the fire to justify my existence.
Pumpkin soup, venison chili, and fennel tea cookies are not sufficient offering. No, I must do something truly sacrificial.
I will clean out the bedroom closets.
Saturday while the snow pours down, I tackle my closet. All I do is remove hangers that have nothing hanging on them. The floor is covered with hangers. I separate them into three piles:
- Tangled wire dry-cleaner hangers that date to when Julie worked at a dry-cleaners and got free dry-cleaning and I sent sweaters regularly to be cleaned instead of washing them on “delicate” and spreading them out on towels on the floor to dry where the (now-deceased) cat could pee on them.
- Plastic hangers that once hung in perfect uniformity on store racks but hang at an annoying variety of heights in the home closet.
- Color coordinated hangers that I actually bought from Target.
The Target hangers go back in the closet. The other hangers–just from my side of the closet–fill two paper grocery bags. (You can’t dispose of wire hangers in a plastic bag or they–the hangers– will kill you.)
Down on the floor, I say farewell to backless shoes that are no good to walk in, orthopedic shoes that supported me in my pre-bionic hip days, and any shoe that would make me cringe in shame if I were standing next to my sister-in-law Eileen. So that clears out some space. I even have some shoes left in the closet.
I lift a pile of old sweaters, thrust once upon a time into the closet in a tidying fit and then abandoned. I discover evidence of a mouse.
Just for the record…don’t ever offer me food with black sesame seeds on it, ok?
The floor must be vacuumed. I haul the vacuum up from the family room where John used it to vacuum the filthy bits of log debris by the fireplace. It won’t even suck up a little piece of thread.
I don’t care that John slayed a tree to keep me warm by the fire. He busted the vacuum with wood chips. He must fix it.
And he does.
Back in the closet I turn on the now functioning vacuum, move the suitcase, and scare the MOUSE who was hiding under it and who now scurries around the closet trying to flee the vacuum and the crazy screaming woman.
I slam the closet doors and position the running vacuum in front of them to scare the mouse from coming out.
John investigates and can not find the mouse. I vacuum the closet. He sets a trap. I call it quits for the day on closet cleaning.
A few hours later, I send John to check the trap. He returns with the snapped mouse.
“Is this him?”
Probably. But how would I know if it were the country mouse or his cousin from town?
So now it is a new day. A bright sunny above freezing day. And John’s closet awaits. Oh, Lordy, who knows what lurks behind those closed doors?