I’ve recently got back into Freecycle which is a great way to give away unwanted items. I am often surprised by what is offered and then taken by someone. My ‘office’ (really just the room where we have the computer and desk and lots of other dumped stuff) has been getting me down. After seeing yet another programme on BBC 1 last night about hoarding I felt I had better tackle the room before a friend calls in a specialist psychiatrist. Actually I have been slowly tackling it for about 4 weeks but the bit by the doorway was the last to be tackled today so from the hallway it had looked REALLY BAD . I have been debating what to do with an old television (doesn’t even have a scart connection so it can’t be updated with a digital box), a pair of broken metal scooters and a very broken but once lovely light fitting from my friend Anne (see more below). I had thought I would wheel them on a trolley to the local tip (reuse & recycling centre) but it is quite a distance away. So today I thought – ‘I wonder what will happen if I leave them on my front step’ so I tried it about half an hour ago and then went off to local shop to buy milk. When I came back the scooters were already gone. I suspect someone will sell them as scrap metal but for me that’s one less thing to organise. The TV is still there but I will give it a day and then I will bring it back in and take it to the tip.
Leaving things just outside your property is a great way to recycle things in London. I have found (and taken) all kinds of things including a wardrobe that I really needed, a push lawn mower (I always use a push mower but had lent the previous one to a friend who then moved and didn’t return it), a Buddha, plant pots, a garden table and a host of other things. It’s Feecycle on an immediate basis
I’m only attaching one photo of my ‘shame’ room but you will see I still have some way to go to get the whole thing cleared up.
Still a lot of ‘stuff’ to clear out and organise…
Ironically part of the reason for the chaos in this room is to do with my friend Anne who died 3 years ago. She was the most amazing person (a single mum) who had two grown up children and a young daughter IV who was nearly 11 at the time and who we still see and love. Anne had been ill for years without telling anyone and only went to the doctors when it was terminal. I guess over recent years Anne has been an inspiration in many ways (the good is about emulating her friendliness and being willing to talk to strangers). The bad, was that living in chaos makes for a difficult life.
A year ago just after I was made redundant I happened by a series of very weird coincidences to be going past her old house. It was finally being cleared out (two years after her death) by the bank who had repossessed it . There was the most enormous skip outside her front door and in it when I looked were all of Anne’s worldly goods – thrown in unceremoniously. Her beautiful furniture had been broken up to get it out of the flat and into the skip. Weirdly (the whole day was weird) two close friends who both were close to Anne happened to be around and two other people who were strong and helpful turned up. We rescued so much stuff from that skip and most of it came back to my house! I washed a lot of the clothes and asked Anne’s daughter to go through them and books, ornaments etc and pick what she wanted. She didn’t take very much but was really grateful to have some of her mother’s things. We also found IV’s passport and other important papers. I am convinced that Anne guided me to the house that day as she knew I’m not squeamish and would sort through the things properly. So over the last year I have taken a lot of stuff to the charity shop, to the local primary school, to school fairs and to but still have some residual stuff that I didn’t know what to do with. The broken light fitting I put out today was something I kept trying to reshape and work out how to reuse it but today I admitted defeat – took off the glass finial which is now a quirky (but small item) in a display bowl and the crystal droplets that I will hang in the bathroom that is now finished!.
Glass finial and droplets – a memory
I know I want this room to be a really inspirational place to work. I have seen lots of images on WordPress blogs to inspire me so I know what I need to do. This room will be part of my next 30 day challenge