Wednesday May 11, 2022

My ex-husband is good at presents. Somehow, he knows exactly the right gift for the right person at the right time. When we were married, I always felt totally inadequate that I never knew what to get him for Christmases and birthdays.

Moving on, Himself is not good at presents and would be the first to admit it. He prefers me to tell him exactly what I would like for my birthday, preferably with a link to the appropriate website so he can just click a button and it arrives. This is better; much better.

This year, I had only one thing on my list, an ultra-sonic jewellery cleaner, which was duly presented to me last Thursday, somewhat inexpertly wrapped, but with great love.

It’s not a large machine – about the size of a rounded brick. You fill it with water, add one drop of detergent, place your jewellery in the basket, close the lid and set it going. In just three minutes, the tiny vibrations in the water dislodge all the dirt and grime, leaving your rings, necklaces, and earrings all gleaming; just as they were when you first bought them.

The satisfaction of seeing that pristine shine is out of all proportion to the size of the task; possibly because it seems like magic! If I were to clean them by hand, it would take forever to get into all the tiny places and fastenings with a toothbrush and to polish the metal and stones. This little machine does it in a fraction of the time.

One special piece I’m delighted to be able to wear again is a necklace in the shape of a butterfly, made of polished turquoise, with curled copper antennae. I love it, but the stones had become dull and the copper grimy. It is now restored to a thing of beauty, and I can wear again it with pleasure.

That cleaning was a small thing. I have committed to a bigger project later this month. My elder daughter comes home from university, and she is concerned her eczema will flare up while she is here, as she is allergic to our cat. When she lived here full-time, it was only a minor problem, but now her skin is used to not being irritated, it will react to him once more.

I’m not going to get rid of Sparty, but I can deep clean to get rid of cat hair and dander. This is sadly not something my ultra-sonic cleaner can handle in three minutes, but I know I will be happier once the house is as squeaky-clean as my turquoise butterfly necklace.

I also know I can’t do it all at once: I don’t have the energy. I shall do thirty minutes at a time; vacuuming, moving furniture and wiping down everything with a damp cloth. Then I’ll move on and do something else.

The pleasure and satisfaction of clean will be wonderful, however. And, hopefully, my daughter’s skin will stay clear.

A Moodscope member.

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