While they weren’t my grandmother’s last words, “Please keep the house as you know I like it,” came in at a close second. Days before she passed, she said this to Yvonne, my grandparents’ home health aide, whose responsibilities include light housekeeping. With all that was running through her mind, my grandmother wanted to make certain that after she was gone her home remained clean.
But she’s not the only one who likes their home spotless. For some, a clean home is a reflection of who they are, for others it’s just their preference. For my grandmother it was both. Plus, I’m sure she wanted it to stay nice for my grandfather.
While I can live with a dust ball or two (I’ve been known to name them), I do like everything in its place. Before I sit down to write, the dishes need to be cleaned, the bed made and any clothes or paper put away. It also motivates me. By first completing those little tasks, it encourages me to complete the bigger ones. But I’m not just like this at home. I don’t litter, I recycle correctly in my building, and my desk at work (which I share) is left neat when I’m done. It’s consideration for my neighbors.
Which can’t be said for everyone.
I live on the Upper West Side, which I’ve renamed the Upper Back Side, as folks walking their dogs can’t seem to clean up after them. At my gym, certain individuals are incapable of wiping down the machines after sweating all ov
er them, and in some of the public restrooms I’ve been in lately, there are women who now think it’s acceptable to go on the seat. I’m not asking people to start lugging Lysol, but it would be nice if folks started picking up after themselves, if not their dogs. I’m sure my grandmother would agree.