Keep It Clean: Re-heating Your Sanity Through Domestic Devotions

I’m a nester. I like nesting. I like to nest.
The obvious comparison then for me, is a bird. Birds nest. So do rats and other vermin, but screw them.

Going with the birds then, if I were to compare my nesting with that of a bird, then I would go so far as to compare myself in this way to a bird of paradise.

I’ve seen videos of the way those creatures tuck and tidy in their little grottos and I tell you they look just like me.

Watching such footage, though, I couldn’t help but wonder just how they discern what in their lair amounts to garbage, and what are the, uh…load bearing leaves shall we say?

How does a bird of paradise discriminate between a stray twig and a bit of rustic moulding?

I mean some things I can see; you got a monkey come and shit up in your house you’re gonna want to have that shit removed. I mean, I’m assuming they don’t make frescos with it…..I have been lead to understand that most animals have a sort of natural revulsion to shit. Shit is out. Shit didn’t make the cut. Scat can scram…

Every morning I get up and make my bed, and refold and tidy up the blankets and pillows that line my nest. I go into the kitchen and clean whatever dishes managed to soil themselves since dinner, then I round up any rubbish that will need removing before finally processing myself for public appearances by way of shower and makeup.

Lately, though, the nesting has been on overdrive. No, no. I’m not pregnant. I’m just sick. Or rather I’ve been sick. Allergies and some kind of mean little flu. And then before that I was travelling for a couple of weeks. Illness, The Road….both can lead a girl to wonder where she is on waking up in the morning.

Normally after being away I need to jump right back into my routine to feel myself. Coming down with the flu within a day or two of returning from Sarajevo–in addition to my annual springtime allergies–ruled that out.

I turned to the oven for redemption.

Alone in Germany–too sick to work, if not sick enough to lie in bed all day–my sense of competence had taken a beating. Banana bread, brownies, fruit salad with ginger & mint syrup, chicken soup, mushroom risotto…recipe by recipe, dish by dish I affirmed my identity–I searched out my worth with a spoon. As my eyes cried the tears of allergy season and my brain clouded with fever, I held onto the range for my sanity.

Deep in the dishwater I saw my reflection. I scrubbed another knife clean as somewhere in the background Beyoncé kept the beat with a frank discussion of video phones. I thought of the bird of paradise and wondered if he too ever dances, even as he cleans?

Disclaimer: That is clearly NOT my photo.

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One Comment on “Keep It Clean: Re-heating Your Sanity Through Domestic Devotions”

  1. Anna Says:

    Birds of paradise are what happen when females ignore males. There’s a lesson in that somewhere xxxx


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