I thought you might like to see some of the domestic chores I’ve been occupied with since (hooray hooray) I finished my book and sent it in to the publisher. Ooh! Today is when they will have the first meeting to decide whether or not to accept it! It has to leap several hurdles before the final yea or nay is given.
So, something that has bothered me for a long time is the modern bathroom’s dislocation from Earth-friendliness. Not only do I want the bathwater I’ve washed in to go to the plants not the drain, I also want it to be at least in part our own harvested rainwater (free) rather than tapwater (bought) in the first place. Rainwater is supposedly soft and very good for washing your hair.
Having neither plumbing skills to effect a system converting our bathroom to accommodate this ambition, nor the money to pay someone else, I puzzled for a while what I could do.
Then I thought, plasterers have baths, don’t they? I googled, and it turns out – yes, they do. So I thought, well if I have a bath in the garden, it’ll be easy to use rainwater; and I can use the watering cans to fill it up and empty it onto the plants. I do like a nice warm bath, so that would be hot water from the tap half-and-half with rainwater from the roof.
There is one place in our yard where this can be done modestly, screened from view. So I have turned it into what I think of as a Japanese bathroom – because some bathrooms in Japan have this rather rugged, outdoorsy, Zen-like aesthetic. And I like it a lot. Works well. It will be too cold in the winter of course, but handily, seeing the bath is entirely portable, I can take it inside by the fire then, can’t I?
I’m sorry the bath comes up as a white blank in the photo. No adjustment I can make improves its ontological recusion.
The same is true of this photo of my towel, which I have pegged out on the lemon verbena bush to dry. This is how they dried laundry in the Middle Ages, and it works jolly well. It scents the fabric more beautifully that any fabric conditioner, and sunlight bleaches and disinfects. Shame the towel looks like I’d sat down with a pair or scissors and cut it out of the picture.
The bath looks more believably existent in this shot of how it stands in between baths.
Now then, here’s the other thing I did – oh man, I am so proud of this!
Under our deck we had several years’ worth of accumulated wood, hard to reach, slowly rotting, a gathering ground for spiders, beetles and mahoosive slugs. Readers, I CLEARED IT OUT!!!! Took off my dress so I had just my leggings and top, and crawled underneath with a dustpan and brush and swept away all the compost the beetles and worms had been turning it into underneath.
I stacked it all in our woodstore, which is empty just now waiting for the new delivery of winter logs coming next month. So now we have to deal with it, and either cut it up for the fire or take it to be recycled at the dump – some and some, I expect.
This is not terribly innovative or exciting, I know, but I am so wildly pleased with myself I wanted to show you.