OK here goes this post on cleaning not just before a trip but also before we head out anywhere. A constant topic of irritation and many many arguments in our household.
According to the husband, I have a cleaning OCD. Before we head out for an evening, when I know we will be late coming home and I will not have the mood or energy to clean then, I spend sometime making sure the house is in order.
I have a confession to make. I hate washing vessels. It is the most tedious, most irritating task. Even more so, when I wake up in the morning and see last evening’s dishes in the sink and I have to wash them first thing in the morning. So, if we are going out in the evening, I wash everything, clean the kitchen counters and kind of make it ready for next morning. Be it weekend or weekday. Many a times this has caused arguments between hubby and me for this reason – that I will be cleaning 30mins before we need to leave and hubby will be watching TV. If I ask him to get ready, he says “you are doing something else and will take longer to get ready, so I will get ready once you are ready” which means we never start on time and are always atleast 15mins late. That gets me too…going late anywhere (ok, that is perhaps for another post).
I HAVE to narrate this incident here. One day, last year, 2 families made plans to watch a night show movie on a Tuesday night. Post dinner, the family of 4 came home to have coffee and then start for the 9:30pm show. So made coffee for all and I just could not leave the cups there – I washed them all while they waited. How long does it take to wash 4cups? Well, hubby was irritated that we made them wait and we argued on the way to the theater. Movie done, we returned and slept at 1am. At 3:30-3:40am there is loud banging on the door, there are police and fire engines standing outside and we are asked to evacuate the house immediately. The warehouse next to the apartments had caught fire and was quickly spreading. We rushed out, called the friend again to pick us up as we were not allowed to take out the car either. It took 4-5 days for the fire to be doused completely and the health authorities to deem the air fit enough for everyone to return. Imagine, if I had not washed those coffee cups that day at 9pm? euuwww! After that incident, hubby now reluctantly agrees that it is good to cleanup before we leave. It took a fire and evacuation for him to start seeing things my way now 😛
Like I said, before any trip, I clean up the house – sweep swab/vacuum/toilets cleaned,bath tubs cleaned, vessels washed, kitchen counter cleaned, fridge cleaned,perishables used up, milk that would last until we return stocked, water purifier cleaned and kept for drying, tables and TV cleaned, bed made, laundry done and trash discarded as we step out. The only laundry that is allowed is that day’s. I plan these activities and span them across 2 days so that I don’t get stressed. But everytime, hubby does! He starts, why are you cleaning the bath tubs now? We can come back and vacuum, we have to anyway do laundry as soon as we return,nobody is coming home, we are going out etc etc;
Here is the deal for me.Before I go on a vacation, I have the josh and I will be looking forward to the vacation, so these tasks get done in a positive frame of mind. On returning I will be upset that the vacation is over and I will already be writing a new to-do list in my head for the following week. I do not want to carry forward tasks that I should have done already. I do not want to come home and scrub the sink, clean the stove or the toilets or make the bed. I want to come home and feel happy coming home and feeling that the house looks clean and neat – just like how I would’ve felt entering that hotel room. Does it sound silly? These tasks feel like a burden if I have to do them once we return. I want to live in the euphoria of the vacation for at least 1 day before landing in reality.
Vacations are fun when planning and executing, but the returning really sucks. Doesn’t it?