Monday, March 25, 2013

Cleaning the Attic

I'm back in Colorado for spring break, cramming my time here full of the usual fun: church on Palm Sunday, walks with Rowan, watching Anna Karenina on DVD with Diane, lunch today with Maureen, my writing group tonight, play date with Cat and her little boy Max tomorrow, making my son Gregory watch Roman Holiday with me in preparation for his study abroad in Rome in May. (How I love that press conference scene at the end of the film when Audrey Hepburn, forced to return to the confines of her life as a princess after one beautiful day of adventure in Rome spent falling in love with Gregory Peck, is asked which of the capital cities she visited on her good will tour of Europe she loved best. She begins with the canned response that each in its own way was unforgettable, and that it would be impossible to choose, but then, with her eyes fixed on Gregory Peck, standing with his fellow newspapermen in the front row, she blurts out, "Rome!")

So these activities would have amply filled my days back home.

But then I decided to tackle the project of cleaning out my attic.  I bought my house five and a half years ago, and somehow in those years my good-sized attic moved from empty to stuffed: things I couldn't part with from cleaning out my mother's apartment, things left over from cleaning out two houses the summer before last, the extra-long twin bed sheets from Gregory's freshman-year dorm room, dozens of gift bags in perfectly good shape to re-use, cartons filled with author's copies of my books, huge quantities of green plastic grass for the boys' Easter baskets (yes, at 21 and 24 they still get an annual visit from the Easter bunny), boxes from Xbox game systems in case they break and need to be returned, and much much more.

I had planned to clean the attic this summer, as part of my launching my new back-in-Colorado life, but when I went in there this past weekend to retrieve something, I saw that the considerable amounts of roofing residue had fallen all over everything when the roofers installed new attic vents while putting on my new HOA-ordered roof while I was away in Indiana.  And it also occurred to me that cleaning an attic is much more pleasant during cool spring days (very cool! we've had ten-and-half inches of snow since I've been home!) than in the scorching days of summer.  And so I began.

Cleaning an attic is not an hour-a-day task.  It is an obsessive, all-consuming, completely absorbing task.  I worked yesterday like a woman possessed, dragging out everything so that my bedroom and office are almost impassable now.  I tossed, recycled, sorted, consolidated.  Today is the un-fun part of vacuuming up the roofing mess.  And then comes the bliss of putting everything back in apple pie order. Then I can walk into the attic and hug myself with happiness.

Next up: the garage!  I am a woman with a mission!  I am a woman who cannot be stopped!

No comments:

Post a Comment