Autrice is not one of those women who decorate for every bloody holiday known to mankind, although she will decorate for each season and may occasionally wave a Canadian flag on her Birthday (which happens to also be Canada Day – July 1. Her Fellow Americans seem to become rather pissed off when anyone celebrates a Canadian or Mexican holiday, hence the purposeful In-Your-Face flag waving.)
The outside of Pembroke Cottage experiences only three seasons: Fall, Winter/Christmas and Spring/Summer. Monday was a perfect day, weather-wise, and Autrice endeavored to strip the last winter vestiges from the front porch. It was clashing with the Easter wreath.
Removing the winter embellishments was not difficult. She could have stopped with simply tugging down the inner-porch festive accoutrements. Autrice, however, noticed several dirty spots on the ceiling of the porch. This was war.
Out came the ladder, the bucket filled with Pine-Sol, a sponge and rag, the hose, and a tall glass of iced tea. Autrice removed the heavy iron furniture from the deck, scrubbed down the first storey of the house (only the front, mind) as well as the windows and screens, the porch ceiling (which is covered in sturdy pure-white vinyl), the porch support columns (also in sturdy pure-white vinyl) and railings (ditto on the vinyl.) She washed down the concrete porch itself. Up the ladder, down the ladder, nearly falling off the ladder, scrubby scrub scrub. The soap was hosed off, paying careful attention to the wind so as to not get water spots on the neighbor’s clean cars. The porch glistened; Autrice was soaking wet from the hose.
Better Half came home just as she was scouring down the porch furniture. One does not work rapidly when Better Half is around. He Procrastinates, as is commanded by law in the Big Book of Manliness. All men must find excuses to slow down work speed, according to this top-secret publication.
Better Half created excuses to visit the Young Neighbors: to see the new puppy, to give advice on how to clip hedges, to share his vast (cough-cough) knowledge of planting for Ohio, to talk about Military Things, to schmooze. Autrice briefly contemplated whacking him with the ladder. This would have been too much effort, so she joined him next door instead. It is easier to drop hints than it is to explain to the Young Neighbors and the Police your reasons for savage spouse abuse in public.
Once Autrice was able to make Better Half understand that she was fading, he set himself in motion. The furniture was placed back on the porch, the cushions brought up from the basement, and the wind chime box brought out. Porch done.
It sounds as if Autrice is a Typical Nagging Wife. In all actuality, she is TG and enjoys her masculine nature. She would not think twice about asking Better Half to help were she in good health.
Today is the Aftermath of all the physcial activity. Autrice can not hold a grudge against Better Half as he excels at taking care of her when she is in pain. He made her a lovely breakfast, brought her some pain medication for her bad back, and pampered her. He said that he would clean the downstairs today. Autrice wonders if he has consulted the Big Book of Manliness yet.
~ another third person musing