Saturday, 15 August 2015

A Good Old Root In The Attic

I didn’t set out to tidy the attic.  I am on holidays after all.   I was only looking for a long lost pair of sandals.    I’d been meaning to get up there all summer, but let’s face it.  It hasn’t been much of a summer, weather wise, so far so I managed just fine without exposed toes until now.  But I have a little guna that would be lovely with this particular strappy pair, so fashion spurred me along.

Ideally, tasks like attic foraging should be carried out, without little ones being present.  I had to weigh it up – If I did this while Home Alone and fell, I’d be a long time hollering before anyone heard me.  If I wait til my children are home, they will, inevitably, want to ‘help’.  I opted for the latter.
Wrestling the step ladder into the Hobbit House, without breaking a light fitting, is always a challenge.  I was rather proud of my three-point-turn skill in this regard.  The Children  + Ladders combination present its own risks, but I work in a local authority that screams ‘Health and Safety’ at every turn, so I felt well equipped to assess the dangers, prepare a method statement, etc.  The biggest risk was the precariously balanced table lamp, required to quite literally, throw some light on the subject.

Guessing that this was going to be a dusty job, I put on my walking trackie bottoms and runners.  The dog got very excited, as he assumed that we were going for a dander.  Sorry mutts.  Later.

I’ve two attics.  The problem was that I didn’t know which one the afore mentioned sandals were in.  Attic no 1 is stashed full of Christmas decorations and an array of barely used baby mobiles and play centres.  Perfect charity shop fodder.  The problem was that they were all dismantled.  I wasn’t in the humour for scrambling on my hands and knees retrieving the parts, so I left them there, depriving some child of endless hours of fun. 

Two little people were fighting in the hall about who came up the ladder first.  The compromise was that the person who had to wait for the second climb could stay up longer.   I'm getting good at this bargaining malarkey.

‘What’s in that huge black bag Mam ?’  

I pretended that I hadn’t seen the bag that I had tried (obviously unsuccessfully) behind tinselly stuff.

They both seen it.  I’m a terrible liar.  I admitted it.  It was a huge stash of huge teddies. 

The pair rejoiced as the stash emptied onto the sitting room floor.  They wondered how some of their teddies got up to the attic without them noticing.  I wondered too ... and felt a little guilty.  In my defence, I did say that I live in a Hobbit House, so I don’t have much room for ‘stuff’ and they have a huge collection as it is.   However, the teddy-find was a useful distraction, with the first Teddy Hospital being established at Poppy Cottage.  Another find, a seatless doll's buggy, was used as a wheelchair.  I continued with Attic no 1 rummaging’s uninterrupted.    
A series of further three-point-turns and I was in Attic no 2, the bigger, more interesting one.  There they were, my sandals, as lovely as I remembered, in a bag of other ‘summer footwear’, most of which were instantly bagged for charity shops.  I found a bag of clothes too, with a deadly top that I forgot I had.  Made up, I was.   There were lots of pairs of shorts too that I hadn’t even noticed as missing.  Hopefully a late heat wave will let them see the light of day again soon. 

I found a heap of cushions, a heap of them and bags of hard-back books that I didn’t have the heart to send to charity shops, many of them souvenir purchases or gifts, but now looking so tatty that they will someday be assigned straight to the bin.  But not today.  Maybe I’ll get that extra bookshelf for them ?  My boy, AKA, Hawk Eye spotted a Transformer toy, one that transforms into a gun thing that sits on your arm.  It makes noise, a lot of it.  He was thrilled and delighted.  Me, less so.
Every time I appeared from the attic, with bits for recycling/dumping/charity shops, I stood on a teddy, was shot in the back by my son, was run over by a teddy wheelchair, or was tripped up by my oversized dog, ever hopeful that we were actually going walkies.

Seeing as it was my holidays and because it was flipping roasting up there, I stopped for regular tea breaks and yes, on one occasion, a wine and crackers break.  It helped with the dust, you know ?   That yellow insulation is quare itchy stuff, especially when you are a dope like me and wear a woolly top with the trackie bottoms.  A rather fetching look all the same.   

I’m starting to feel itchy again just thinking about it.   A quick shower to wash the imaginary itch off me and it will be time to reunite my sandals and top with the world, methinks.  Then I’ll think about building an extension to accommodate the teddies.  As for the flipping Transformer arm gun thing … I can’t say that my intentions are quite so honourable …

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