|all trace of monsters wiped away...|
Then BOOM! A veritable literary eruption explodes from my cracked and blistered dishpan hands out of the blue one week in June. Go figure.
So imagine this scenario: Yesterday lunchtime I'm sat in the dining room with my new best friend: a Hungarian Handyman with a ten-a-day habit and a blazing smile. He is my new best friend because in the equivalent of 8 hours in the past week, he has DIY'ed this place back into working order - doing all the things my DIY-shy husband refuses to do.
He's not cheap, but he's a good sort and I trust him (enough to tell him that Jay and the boys will be away camping next weekend and I'll be here alone...shortly after I asked him to saw through the locked terrace doors which are now no longer secure - as Squitty had lost the keys).
Anyway, I was going on about something or other (aren't I always?) when my mobile rang and cut me off mid-sentence. It was our estate agent telling me that we had a viewing in four hours.
"You WHAT?!" I thought. But what I said, in my trademark 'voiceover voice' dulcet tones was, "Of course. That's absolutely fine. No problem at all. Go ahead and book it in."
My Hungarian Handyman looked up incredulously from where he was sat on the floor, surrounded by two giant sets of ceiling lights he'd taken apart and a huge amount of rubble.
"You think this good idea?" he asked, nodding to the general debris, locked terrace doors and newly painted cupboards freshly crayoned on by Squit the night before.
"No," I repled. "But I'm desperate. And I'm going to clean this bloody house even if I kill myself doing it."
"Okay" he said shrugging his shoulders, and got back to trying to screw drive some life into our broken transformers, shaking his head and leaving me to it.
So I cleaned like I've never cleaned before - or rather at a speed I've never cleaned before. Cleaned my little heart out I did. My hands were moving so fast you would have had to slow down the dvd if you were watching a replay of it. Like a whirling dervish I scrubbed, scoured, binned, shined, stashed, trashed, and polished this home into a state of near-normality.
Then I begged my Hungarian Handyman to help transfer approximately 1/17th of our possessions into the husband's camper van parked round the corner, and help me frantically clean all the outside windows by precariously balancing on the outside of our window sills.
Later, after coughing up what I perceived to be a fairly inflated sum, I ran around the flat manically turning on lights, lighting candles and stashing dirty little boy's underwear wherever I could safely cram and conceal. At last, with only seconds to spare, I stood back and surveyed. And I was happy.
An hour later, after doing the school pick-up, force feeding the monsters vanilla ice cream cones and detouring via the park, we finally arrived back home at our (now insecure) flat only to find that a local builder had been privy to the viewing and when quizzed confided that the viewing went well, they liked our home, but felt there was nowhere to add value to the place.
I thought to myself, "They're 'Empty Nesters'...they don't have three boys under ten and they would actually use the terrace to chill and drink wine on - not scream themselves hoarse trying to halt sudden cricket matches."
Surely by virtue of NOT being us that would be adding to the long-term value non??