Monday, April 26, 2004

One Thing Leads To Another

Things were going well on the housewife front this morning, albeit I was running a bit behind (as is typical on a Monday). The kitchen was clean from its weekend mess, the first load of laundry was started, my exercises were done, and the pot of beans for supper was cooking. Time for me to do my relaxation practice.

As usual, "relaxing" turned into "napping," at least the light dozy sort of napping where I'm vaguely aware of still being alive but not awake enough to give serious thought to getting up.

The next thing I became vividly aware of was that the house smelt like smoke. Now, I have much experience in burning beans (ask my younger siblings). I know there are degrees of burning. There is a certain point at which you can dump all but the bottom layer of beans into another pot, start over with fresh water, and have at worst a mildly smoky flavor. My siblings called it "Cajun" and learned to prefer their chili that way.

I didn't even have to look at the pot to know that this point was long past.

Naturally I was perturbed not only at wasting an entire pot of beans, but also wasting nearly the last of my distilled water--a few slack days towards the end of last week, the monthly distiller cleaning, and the aforementioned invasion of brothers-in-law had left us down to our last gallon.

As I was setting the pot outside and airing the house (fortunately it's a balmy spring day) it occurred to me that, after all, I was highly overdue to clean out the refrigerator. And under the sink. And test out the self-cleaning cycle on the oven. As long as the house stank that bad, I reasoned, it was the ideal time to do all other stinky tasks. They couldn't possibly make it any worse.

And thus a pot of burned beans turned into spring-cleaning the kitchen for the next three hours. The refrigerator is sparkling. Under the sink is sparkling. The oven racks are scrubbed. The oven is running the self-cleaning cycle. (I was wrong, it does stink worse than burned beans.) The sink is sparkling. (I discovered the sink cleaner also does wonders on my enamel bean pot.) The floor is clean. The dishwasher is running. The distiller is running. The washing machine is running.

I'm going to go take a nap now.

No comments: