Or buying a carpet. It’s been over a year since my Dad decided to redecorate the whole house. It was much better than coping with my Mum’s Terminal Cancer diagnosis, and having ‘something to do’ is very important to my Father. He only retired a couple of years ago, and used to work from home. He worked for over 45 years – from the age of 14. So, he has a work ethic as powerful as a jet engine.
However, he’s living with me. And asking me things. I now understand why my Mum did not have the house decorated in over 30 years. Dealing with Dad when he’s in ‘Get Things Done’ mode is tiring and provokes, um, symptoms (IBS, Palpitations, Costochondritis, Seizures… the wish to kill others). While I was away, he dealt with a long term house problem – a bay window curtain pole. Our house, built 100 years ago, was built cheap. The Bay Window in the Living Room is a piece of crap. Sandstone uprights and shoddy lathe and plaster. In 1980 when they bought the house, my Dad created a very clever system for hanging curtains – that was strong enough and stable enough to take Velvet Drapes. But that wore out (Damn you, Plastic!) and he and Mum decided they wanted a pole. But that caused engineering troubles. My Dad has solved these – reasonably elegantly. He was so chuffed when I got home and he could show me. So chuffed. The poles are in place, and now we have to get carpet and curtains. Carpet first.
I’d forgotten about what happened about 6 months ago when we went to get carpet. I’d blocked it out. But now we’re back at the Carpet Stage. John Lewis, samples, tension. Today I was meant to go to sign up for a course, and then meet Dad to get carpet. But I’m so tense (having been asked over and over when I’m going to sign on for the course and look at carpet and curtains and do we have the curtain pole finials and have I called the GP) that I’m only doing the carpet. To get Dad off my (twisted, painful) back. Dad doesn’t realise what he’s like. I know I’m annoying and that I say I’ll do things on a Monday and don’t. But he doesn’t see that as soon as he makes me promise to do something, it won’t happen. And that I’ll sacrifice my things to shut him up. I know as soon as we choose carpet, I’ll be nagged about curtains. The man has had lining paper stuck to the windows for 4 years, and now, because he’s put up the pole, we HAVE TO HAVE CURTAINS NOW! Being a human with human interactions is so tiring.
So I’m eating Omeprazole, drinking Gaviscon and waiting for the Diazepam to kick in before going to a very busy shopping area to look at carpet density. And I still can’t see properly. Sticky eyes. Bastard eyes. I’m glad I can see*, but my eyes are ‘the wrong shape’ – the balls (ha) are not round and are anchored in a different place than most – my pupil ‘floats’ in the eye and the eye is not properly lubricated. Currently everything I see looks like it’s got a soft focus lens on it.
If you hear of a 71 year old man being killed in John Lewis in London, beaten to death by a carpet samples book or large piece of lighting – I did it.
Y’See, normal things happen in a Wonky Life, and they’re just as boring to read about as when they happen to Non-Wonkys.
*I am very very short sighted, only have one working eye and my family has a history of Glaucoma and Retinal Detachment ( thank you Daddy – he also has one eye and had multiple Retinal Detachments, but he also stuck a screwdriver in there). I am glad and thankful I can see and have only had to have on operation on them. I can put eye-drops in on the Tube and in a moving car without a mirror.