In fact, when she used to look after the boys (the halcyon days when I never had to hoover my own carpets!) I once came in from work to find my mum wearing the expression she normally reserved for days when either she or the kids had broken something or she had hit something in our car. "I hope you don't mind," she said nervously, "but I ironed your husband's handkerchiefs". Yeah, she got a kick out of ironing my hubbie's cotton hankies. That, my friends, is domesticity squared.
I, on the other hand, do not iron anything. I have been known to go for
In particular I hoovered under the Humpty box. This is not, as its name suggests, a box for keeping Humpties in (in my experience, Humpties refuse to be kept in anything - they tend to roam our house unchecked). It is in fact an old wooden blanket box that used to belong to Husband's grandmother and which now sits in our upstairs hall outside the boys' bedroom. The Humpties, of which we have many, hang out on top of it, hence the name. I haven't moved this box for, ummm, quite a while. When I did so today, I nearly ran out of the house. There was a creature under there the likes of which I have never seen before. It was made entirely from old slippers, bits of lego and dust. The dust was holding it all together. One stray burst of static electricity and I swear it would have started breathing.
Bravely I held my nose and dived in to dismantle the creature. The slippers were beyond saving and even if they weren't, they scared me so I shovelled the whole lot into a bin bag and threw them out. Then I hoovered like my life depended on it. I am now hugely, unjustifiably proud of my upstairs hall - reasonably clean and devoid of odd dust-based lifeforms.
There is however one part of me which genuinely does seem to resemble the sort of woman who appears in Persil adverts. I absolutely love being able to hang up my laundry outdoors. I derive enormous pleasure from hanging washing out and even more from bringing it in again, all fresh and smelling lovely - this due largely to the fact that I have a whirligig (rotary clothes dryer to the non-Scots out there) and it is positioned to drag my washing through a large rosemary bush every time it rotates. Better than any fabric softener, I tell you.
So, do you think there is hope for me yet? Could I yet morph into another Anthea Turner? And if so, how the hell do I stop that happening?!
Edited to add: Croila tells me that house dust barely qualifies as such if you can roll it up in a sheet and stick it in the bin. And no, she does not want to come round and do my hoovering for me. Can't imagine why not........