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There is nothing quite as satisfactory as a good tidy-up. Guests are coming tonight for supper; I am using this opportunity to give the back-porch a proper cleaning. Temperatures getting back into the 80s; the open porch is a marvelous place to sit in the evening with a book and a snort.

The cliche ‘sand gets into everything’ holds true. In Phoenix dust and grime covers all quick a quarter note. Although it is still too cold to go swimming he pool, covered in mesquite droppings, in in desperate need of assistance. Everything needs airing.


The ‘before” photo.


First: put on some music.*

Second: don the weight belt, for my back problem is not quite over.

Third: take the allergy pills – now.

Fourth: haul everything out and start.

Cleaning in the Southwest has its special hazards. You never can tell when you might find a scorpion or a black widow. Lift a pot or chair and find a friend. Today there were none. I did find a dead bird that had flown into the window, Poor thing. Moving the succulents around to sweep means potential pricks and pokes. In between these duties, take a net to the pool and sweep out more mesquite. It’s a race really. Can Urs Truly make a limpid pool or will the mesquite tree put out more and more to the point of futility? **

The poinsettias are perennials; they still have some bright red leaves to them which is a bit unsettling and unwanted.  But at least they are thriving which is more than most things. Two-thirds of the trellis cacti did not make it through the winter and it is too late to trip out to Lowe’s to replenish them.

Well, my union break is over and it is back to the salt mines. I am beginning to sneeze which means it will be a miserable evening. The place will look good but I won’t.  I think this evening after the guests depart I will sit in the hot tub – now shiny and chemically balanced – and be wholly satisfied with the day’s industry. In honor of Wayne Cajun, I hear olives calling me.

* Mama Cass, The Monkees, and singers of that sort are quite lovely for the purposes of cleaning up. Just don’t dance around too much during “I say a little prayer for you” as there will be talk.

** So far I am winning. But let’s see what happens during this blogging break.

Spo-fans remonstrate I did not provide and ‘AFTER” photos.  I am full of compunction.




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February 2015

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