A few years ago, back when I worked in an office and had to get dressed and be all sociable first thing in the morning, my colleagues and I were discussing domestic chores. Specifically, changing the bed sheets.
“Well, I don’t change it once a week,” said one colleague.
“Of course!” I said, relieved.
“I do it every week and a half,” she said. “Two weeks if I was being really gross. And if I lived with someone, of course I’d change it every week.”
And other people in the room nodded.
The happiness and fulfillment that comes with making the bed. NOT
I kept silent, lest I reveal myself to be the slattern I clearly am. For I do not change the sheets once a week. Or indeed fortnight. Yes, several weeks can go by until I force myself to strip the bed and turn the mattress and change the duvet and all those other deeply unpleasant tasks. As long as a bed doesn’t smell of stinky people, I will put off those horrible chores. Recently, a columnist in Red Magazine confessed that she flips the duvet over after a week or two to make it last longer between washes. I almost wish I hadn’t read this, because it just put ideas into my head.
Because I hate changing the sheets. It’s awkward and strenuous and even though I always make my husband do the very worst part of the whole thing, replacing the actual duvet (he’s a foot taller than me, it’s easier for him to shake it out), there is no easy bit in the whole bed changing business, except maybe the pillow cases. Turning the mattress, tucking in the fitted sheet – I hate it all.
To make things worse, I tend to strip the bed in the middle of the afternoon and then forget we need to put the clean sheets on until we’re just about to go to bed, so we’re both staggering around, knackered, looking for the Cath Kidston pillowcases in the middle of the night. It’s dreadful, and we both hate doing it so it’s not like one of us can happily lead the way. Even the fact that actually getting into the lovely clean bed is one of life’s greatest pleasures doesn’t make it any easier.
So am I alone in my lazy reluctance to replace the duvet? If so, what is your least favourite chore?
And what, if any, do you actually enjoy? I find mopping the kitchen floor strangely soothing…