Sunday, April 28, 2013

Spring fling

Flinging open the windows, I let in the warm late-April sunshine that illuminates every single speck of winter dust; and that’s when the frenzy begins.

The cold, erratic weather this season delayed spring cleaning, but before I know it I am immersed in the annual ritual.

“I must confess that I find housework very tiresome in spring. So much suddenly seems to need doing,” said Gladys Taber, who wrote about life at Stillmeadow, her seventeenth-century Connecticut farmhouse. “The light is brighter now, and lasts longer, and it shows up everything! You can’t do it all at once – curtains, rugs, woodwork, attic and cellar.”

But I try.

I dust, wash windows and vacuum, but while I’m cleaning every nook and cranny of the dining room furniture, I glance at the stove and think how nice it would be to make a batch of chocolate chip cookies.

I abandon the Swiffer, grab the cookie sheet and preheat the oven; and before long the cookies are baking in the oven.

Now where was I?

I pull the sheets off the bed and carry the laundry downstairs. I put the summer comforter in the washing machine.

The front doorbell rings. I run upstairs and accept a delivery, but before she leaves, I make a dash for the kitchen counter and return with a warm cookie.

Now what was I doing?

I begin cleaning the kitchen. Then I head downstairs to move the comforter to the dryer.

While I wash the cookie sheet, I stare out the open window and watch a black-capped chickadee nibbling at the feeder.

Then the dryer buzzer rings, and I rush downstairs to get the comforter and make up the bed with new linens.

Munching on a cookie by the picture window, I see the gorgeous purple azaleas in the front garden.

“It’s little I care what path I take / And where it leads it’s little I care / But out of this house, lest my heart break, / I must go, and off somewhere,” wrote Edna St. Vincent Millay, a Maine native.

I bolt.

“Before she has her floor swept / Or her dishes done, / Any day you’ll find her / A-sunning in the sun!” said the poet.  

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