Miss Pym and a Friend

Miss Pym and a Friend

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas, Pym, and Housework

Merry Christmas to Everyone; it has taken an eternity to get to this day. I always use it as measurement of what happened the year before.

So many people gone, and it is hard not to be nostaligic and elegiac.

Of course, cleaning is part of hte holidays. We have to clean to put up the decorations, for company, before and after cooking, to take down the decoartions, to shovel where needed.

I have decided just how much I hate housework now that it falls exclusively in my realm, and I'm so bad at it.

Years ago, when I had my small, charming apartments, full of my collections, and things I loved, I studied an hour or two, then dusted or cooked. I went for a walk, and came back and cleaned myh over. I used to lvoe to bleach things, and even a trip to the laundromat was productive. I took books and letters, homework, a cup of coffe,and I felt I'd accomplished something.

That may be the point; I wasn't cleaning up after other people, just myself. even at home, a major cleaning overhaul was an event for my mom and me. We had Mr. Quick hamburgers, and picked flowers. Cleaning at this level usually meant the holidays were coming, or I was having a birthday party. Life was different, and mom and I would get chatty, and schedule shoping trips to our favorite little store in between vacuming.

Pym's Catherine Oliphant was my inspiration; I wrote about her in papers, conference presentations, my dissertation, and my book on Pym, The Subversion of Romance in the Novels of Babara Pym. Cathrine wrote, and stopped to stir a beef burgudny, to add a bay leaf, to check a recipe. She, and all good Pym women, read cookbooks and wine lists, something I love to do, when time permits.

Of course, I wasn't working round the clock, running two or three households, involved with all kinds of family and issues,a nd I was so much younger.

Merry Christmas, take time to laugh, even at yourselves, and be at peace.

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