Right, I’ve never pretended to be Heloise with helpful hints for the housewife, nor Fly Lady who counsels her faithful internet readers to clean the kitchen sink each morning to set us off on the right foot. But here’s what I’ve learned:
I can save myself a peck of aggravation if I wash out my sink cloth in hot water as soon as I set foot in the kitchen.
Why? Because before I know it, I will reach for it to wipe up spilled coffee grounds, oatmeal dust (you know what I mean—admit it), or a drip of Coffee-Mate from that dadburned ‘new-and-improved’ bottle design. And unless I follow my own advice, that cloth will be dry as a board from having hung on the faucet overnight, and I will have to stop and rinse it out first. This annoys me, so I have been trying to learn the habit of wetting it and wringing it out as soon as I get started on breakfast, lunch or dinner prep. It’s actually making my life a little less frustrating. Every little bit helps.
Now. What I can’t learn. (I know, we don’t have space enough for all that here in this little old blog, but we can skim a tiny part of the surface.)
About six years ago my lovely friend R. and I went to the dentist together. This may sound a little peculiar, but R. is 98 years old, and does not drive. We go to the same dentist, so we make our appointments together, and I get to spend the day with a delightful and caring friend. After we get our respective check-ups, we go to lunch, and sometimes do a little shopping before we go home. But I digress…
So R. and I were washing our hands in the restroom after our lunch date, and it was winter. As I reached up to take some paper towels from the dispenser, I complained to her, “Why do they always seem to put the paper towels up so high that the water runs from your wet hands up your sleeves? It’s just maddening, especially in the winter! Now the cuffs of my sweater will be wet and cold for an hour!”
R. was sympathetic, and agreed completely with me, that this was a vast conspiracy to aggravate the general public. That’s what friends are for, right?
But then I noticed that she had tucked some of those same paper towels under her arm. She didn’t have to reach up to the dispenser and get her sleeves wet. She gently mentioned that she had started doing this ‘recently’ to avoid this exact problem.
I need to do that, too. That’s a habit I should really adopt. So I have tried. When I walk into a public restroom, I tell myself to grab the paper towels before I wash my hands.
Has it worked? Not yet. The 98-year old can remember to do it EVERY TIME, and I don’t think I’ve done it more than three times in the six years I’ve been thinking about it. Of course, I’m not in a public restroom every day…
But what does this tell me? If I put this into a context that includes my sink cloth hint, perhaps I just subconsciously value wet over dry… Is there hope for me? I really wonder… But I’m hoping that one of these days I’ll stop asking myself why, if R. can do this consistently, why oh why can’t I?