Sunlight struggles through grey skies. It is eleven o’clock in the morning and I’ve already cooked dinner – pasta and meatballs in a roasted tomato and onion sauce – so I have a whole day ahead of me without schedule, without a to do list.
I am sorting through my sentimental things. The last category of my life-changing tidying mission. It will take a while. Sorting through photographs, culling and reminiscing is not without pain. On my living room floor are little piles, one for each child of paintings, cards, school crafts, memories of their childhood, which I will box and pass on to them when they are older. Another pile will go in a box labelled ‘Kim – to keep’ and includes photographs, baby memory books, a tiny set of knitted booties, mittens and a bonnet, a faded pair of satin ballet shoes, and handmade gifts from the children. My aim is to winnow this pile down to just one box. Hmmm…
Outside, the garden is verging on out of control. Box hedges overflow pathways and lawns. A mess of Buddleia bush long past flowering harbours a hundred webs, and mottled brown spiders lurk waiting to catch on your hair as you walk past unaware. The courgettes were disappointing and not a single squash or pumpkin grew this year. The Tumbling Tom cherry-tomato plants recommended by my mum however, are my prize plants. We can’t walk past without picking one and popping it into our mouths. An explosion of sunshine that pales the taste of any shop-bought fare.
Yesterday, I cut back one of the hedges that creeps into my neighbour’s garden. Hours of hacking with the shears at a mere foot off the ground, then the collecting, and the sweeping of trimmings, has left aching bones. And, on top of that, I have an ear infection that affects my balance. I think I will focus on the quiet and the slow today.
I like quiet and slow Sundays don’t you? A day of rest is good for us, no matter what our beliefs. A day to breathe. Thank goodness for that.