The Joy of Washing Up

Washing upThere seems to be a general consensus, in the UK at least, that a dishwasher is a necessary piece of equipment.  After not seeing that particular ‘need’ for years, I finally had the choice removed when I shared a house with someone who was a dishwasher fanatic.

I was a reluctant convert, despising the requirement to stock pile dirty dishes in order to feed the beast; loathing the loading and un-loading process in equal measure.  Eventually I suppose I just got use to it and accepted it as part of the growing list of items of technology essential for modern living.

Recently however, after a series of events I won’t bore you with, we’ve decided that the dishwasher is going!  We’re back to washing dishes by hand – “groan”; well, actually, no!  I really have discovered, or perhaps re-discovered, the joy of washing up!  There may be a pervasive feeling that washing dishes by hand is somehow old-fashioned and demeaning; that we don’t have the time to do such menial tasks.  In reality it’s a relatively quick and strangely satisfying process: the dishes get used; the dishes get washed.  It’s probably quicker, for me anyway, than loading and un-loading the dishwasher, and it certainly is a lot less annoying.

A bowl of piping hot soapy water – from an environmentally friendly washing up liquid of course- a pair of fair-trade rubber gloves, and you’re away!  I’m in the fortunate position of being able to scrub and stack in front of a rather impressive view, but wherever you are and whatever you have to stare at you can let your mind free-wheel, or if you prefer, crank up the music and sing your lungs out – both are fairly relaxing activities, and you might even wish you had some more washing up to do!

So, it turns out that washing up, like making bread, can be a great de-stresser and unwinder, and generally something to savour rather than dread.

I’m not sure how much it saves on water or energy, but it saves on the irritation of dirty dishes accumulating, and never having a clean teaspoon to hand.  It can provide an oasis of calm serenity amid the domestic grind of our contraption filled lives.

So far I haven’t quite found the same satisfaction in drying the dishes, but it’s a perilous and un-hygienic practice anyway, so I leave the dishes to dry, and the putting away to someone else!

A Certain Age…

over the hillIt would seem that I’ve reached ‘that age’.  She didn’t say ‘old’, not exactly, but certainly she indicated that I was no longer ‘young’ enough to assume that all will be well!  Yesterday I had my first ECG; not because I have a dodgy ticker, or a family history of heart disease; not even because I’ve reported chest pain, or in anyway indicated that my heart might be suspect, but simply because I’ve hit a ‘magic’ number of years (or nearly).  Now, it must not be assumed that my heart can take the shock of  an anaesthetic.  Last year all was well: I had two anaesthetics, and no questions asked!  This year, however, is a different story – my strong and beating heart must be checked for tremors, palpitations, irregularities and anomalies.  The wires and graphs showed ups and downs in regular rhythm; no sinister beats or skips were recorded on the chart.  My bp of 120/70 can return to its more normal – for me – 100/60, and I can breathe easy knowing my cardiac muscle is pumping away like a good ‘un.

It’s not that I have any objection to being asked to have an ECG, not at all, it’s comforting knowing they’re making sure I’m OK.  What is disconcerting is the concept of this invisible boundary which I’m about to cross.  Last year my heart was ‘young’ and this year it is, well, if not exactly ‘old’, certainly ‘of that age’ where it must be suspect evermore!

Thankfully I still feel young at heart, however the medical profession choose to classify me!