For the last ten days, I have shared my space with one, two, at times three men who were attempting to revive my ageing woodwork and repair the damage I did to my walls when Feng Shui demanded that I rehang my pictures. For the most part, we got along just grand. I turned a blind eye to the dust and the dirt and gave thanks that they at least covered the furniture before starting work. I played musical beds as they moved from room to room and I got used to stepping over chairs and books and bags to get to my kettle. I told myself repeatedly that it would soon be over.
The work that I do to pay for this painting is rarely accomplished in one day. There are few finite tasks that I can start, work through, and finish in a day. Most are part of a continuous chain of events, just one link in what will develop into something tangible months down the road. It’s rare that I get that sense of satisfaction from completing something. So when I was presented with a mound of door handles and key plates to shine and polish, I was ecstatic. Completely engrossed in my work, I didn’t notice the hours go by. The satisfaction I got from seeing my face reflected in the surface was positively orgasmic (well, not quite, but nearly!)
So, instead of looking at the inches of dust that have accumulated over the last few days and screaming silently at the thoughts of making them disappear; instead of looking at tiles and parquet that need to be resuscitated and groaning at the back-breaking work that will involve; instead of dreading the loads and loads of laundry that lie ahead of me and the accompanying ironing, I’m actually looking forward to it all.
Now that might well say something about the state of my social life – but hand on my heart, this week, I’m grateful that my flat is a tip. I’m grateful that I will have two solid days of the kind of work that offers immense satisfaction. A beginning, a middle, and an end. And no, I wouldn’t want to do this for a living – but every now and then it’s good to do something concrete – something where you can see the difference your work has made.
[Note: Post Grateful 52 explains the Grateful concept]