Problems of Living Aone
It rained last night, it does a lot of that here in Devonshire, England. With rain comes problems, some big like a leaking roof and some small like the bane of my life - woodlice. I woke up this morning, having left my slippers downstairs, to find yet more of the ghastly creatures yomping across my bathroom floor.
I have had to devise a plan to dispose of them myself now that I am a widow. Black widow spiders I could probably deal with, but woodlice, no, not on your nelly! So I keep a roll of tissue paper by my bed for when I see one these marauding invaders. You would not believe how big some of them are! This morning I watched the direction it was going and wondered if I could get into the bathroom or down the stairs without crossing it's path. The answer was no!
So I tear off a piece of tissue paper, gingerly bat and flap it at the offending woodlouse until it rolls itself into a ball. Then I have to pick it up in the paper quickly before it thinks the danger is past. Don't think about it, just do it. Next I have to fold the paper into a ball so it can't escape. Then (the worst bit) squash it inside the paper. They make a crunching sound when you do this, ugh! Finally, drop it into the loo, pee on it, press the flush and close the lid. Job done - unless there are more than one - then I am free to go downstairs for a well deserved cup of tea.
Tea and Sympathy
Next job of the day, make your own tea. No pot of tea waiting for me any more. Not even last night's washing up done. So put the kettle on and while the tea is brewing do the washing up. Yes, I know I could do the dishes before I go to bed, but in over fifty years I never have and you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Besides I don't like leaving my 'winding down' routine or I won't get to sleep. So not an option. At least I get to look out of the kitchen window and admire the garden - or rather see all the jobs that need attending to out there...
I have not yet worked out how I can have my morning bath and answer the front door at the same time. You know that film, The Postman Always Rings Twice, well mine seems to stick his finger on the doorbell like a magnet, or gets attached to it by an electric shock, and always when I am upstairs. When I am downstairs he just walks on by, no post today. In the good old days you could set your watch by the postman but since privatisation they seem to deliver any time of the day. I think the answer may be to switch to an evening bath, more disruption of my previous routine, oh and get that doorbell looked at because it might be faulty!
Cosy and Warm
I used to have to carry eight cans of cider home, four each in a plastic bag plus two containers of milk. Okay, no cider to cart home now (hate the stuff) but I don't need two milks at a time so that costs me more because they are cheaper if you buy two. Like everything else in the supermarkets, bulk buys and two for one specials are not what I need or want any more so I have to pay more which goes against the grain. I have got lazy and discovered ready meals though, there is enough variety for a week of nutritional dinners but with too much added salt and sugar, so I can't have it both ways. At least I don't have greasy frying pans to wash up any more nor bother with peeling, slicing and cooking raw vegetables and clearing up the mess. Just open a tin and eat fresh fruit!
This is probably one step away from the senior citizens meals on wheels service but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it, at the moment I deliver my own meals via the shopping trolley I bought from eBay. I hate using it as it makes me feel old and much prefer to carry my shopping home in two bags, one in each hand, which saves me the expense of going to the gym to work-out and keep my strength up. Another thing I do is walk a lot, we have some amazing scenery around here and as it is a holiday resort there are usually interesting people to pass the time of day with. I like listening to their accents and guessing where they come from and they like talking about the Great British weather! (For that, read rain).
My Favourite Walk
Now that's a heading of contention, I would like to have put the Neighbours from Hell but thought better of it. We have a television programme here in England called that and you can take my word for it that they are better on the television than living next door. I am anti-social, like to keep myself to myself and just come and go as I please so the last thing I want is the new neighbours next door pushing notes through my letter-box. She has been doing this for the past six months, I know who she is and that she is a needy person, but I don't need her to depress me, thank you very much! So I ignore her. I have had too much trouble with neighbours in the past but also in the past my husband would have a word with them and sort it out, he was good at that kind of thing, whereas I just tend to hide hoping they will go away.
Two weeks ago, my daughter came round to find me in tears, the man next door (the same neighbours) had been shouting, swearing and verbally abusing the lady who is older than me. I could hear him through my wall even with the television on. They are not even married, yes I know that is no excuse, nothing is, and he is supposed to be her carer. I was a carer for five years and never raised my voice or verbally abused someone I knew was defenceless and I felt sorry for. Anyway, my daughter knocked on his door, told him off and said she would report him if I heard him again. Silence reigns for the time being!
The other neighbours are fine except a few years ago when we were new here we had to have a word about their karaoke/microphone set-up next door, the boom boom boom through our two foot thick walls was too much to bear. They are at the stage of skirting past me because they don't know what to say, but they were there when I needed them and that's what counts. I miss the old neighbours the other side, his house was up for sale for a long time and was a firefighter who cleaned our gutters out for us (they need doing again now, too many trees around here). He came in and performed CPR one night last year but moved the following week. I would like to say that my husband was a quiet and polite neighbour but he was my Rottweiler and I miss him.
Watch that Neighbour
As time goes by and I get used to living on my own, something I have never done before, neither by choice nor inclination, I have found various hobbies to keep me entertained, to the detriment of my housework, I have to add. But we all get through loneliness and bereavement in our own way. They say it takes time and time heals everything. Two of my new hobbies have been reading and writing which I find are a great escape, especially writing, as it includes researching and editing.
Do you read books?
© 2015 Bren Hall