I have a new cleaning schedule. It makes so much sense, I don't know why I didn't think of this five years ago. In short, I tidy, dust, sweep or hoover and scrub (if applicable) one room of the flat a day, except Sundays. We have eight rooms (arguably nine, but currently we use the smallest as a closet), so two get done on either Saturday or Monday.
My sudden enthusiasm for cleaning is down to Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House. I opened the neglected volume for stain removal advice, and got sucked into the section on dusting. What I read about dust mites frightened me so much, I seized the hoover at once and hoovered the dickens out of the bedroom carpet even though it was Sunday.
We have sand-coloured wall to wall carpeting throughout the flat, which I hate on principle, but it was here before us, and here it will be when we go. Having been roused to unprecedented levels of cleaning activity, I shall sail out this weekend to buy a carpet cleaner.
Now the flat is entirely tidy and dusted, though the recycling has silted up in the kitchen again. Saturday mornings are dedicated to cleaning the kitchen. Incidentally, I have taken to hand cream. Last night I went to bed wearing cheap wool gloves, hands covered in shea butter. My fingernails are a wreck. I am a homemaking martyr.
The psychological boost I get after finishing a room, especially if I get it done by noon, is really amazing. I am hoping it is addictive. So is B.A. Usually he cleans the bathroom out of sheer desperation, poor man, and in five years he complained only once.