Spring cleaning in November

It’s been a day of clearing and tidying up in our house. It’s astonishing how much stuff we have accumulated in the time that we have been living here. It’s even more astonishing how easy it is to dispose of the now unwanted stuff to people who can make better use of it. Local Facebook buy-and-sell sites, Gumtree, Freecycle, charity shops – all have been exploited in our drive to de-clutter. It’s been reassuring to know that things that have served us well will have their useful lives extended (and in some cases, even reinvigorated – long unused Scalextric I’m thinking of you here) in other homes in the years to come.

Of course, not everything has been able to be sold or donated. We’ve also made several trips to the local municipal waste centre. Hopefully the old aluminium bed frame will find itself melted down and reused in the future; and the now obsolete electrical items will be stripped down and the valuable metals and components will re-enter the supply chain as part of more modern consumer goods.

Sitting here now, at the end of a tiring but rewarding day, it’s not immediately obvious where all the things that have gone came from in the first place. Somebody walking into the house and looking around would see things pretty much as they were this morning. What they wouldn’t know, though, is that there are now empty shelves in cupboards that were previously groaning under the weight of excess stuff; and it’s possible to walk into the garage without first donning a hard hat and hi-vis jacket for protection!

Having got the ‘clearing’ bug, tomorrow I plan to get to grips my work e-mail in-box. I doubt that there’ll be many takers on Gumtree for the contents of that overstuffed storage area!

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