We’ve been ‘refreshing’ our kitchen.

We bought the units in a half price sale before we left Scotland, transported them down in their boxes. I designed the kitchen, having studied the most efficient layout. John built it. It has served us well for nearly 30 years.

The cupboards were originally pine. We bought a pine dresser to go in the kitchen, and a rectangular pine table from Habitat, also bought in Edinburgh before we left. The table returned to Scotland eventually going to Joanna, though I think it has gone the way of all things material by now. After a few years we took the top off the pine dresser and John built it up to the ceiling. When the kittens were tiny they would disappear under it if they felt threatened, and eventually I found one stuck in there, mewing pathetically – it was very difficult to get it out uninjured. We blocked off the space underneath it which was also good because the cats used to bring in mice and then ‘play’ with them but they would escape through some miniscule gap to the safety underneath.

Over the years, the kitchen has been pine, a pale blue, a pale green, and now its Battleship Grey. With white and a black worktop. I’ve retained my sage green Denby china and it looks OK with the grey. Every time we’ve repainted, John has said to me, Should we get a new kitchen? But I like the layout, the cupboards are good, the doors plain. We’ve had new handles; new white goods; new china; new circular table. This time we got new knives, food preparation machine and new toaster, plus new scales. Also we bought new Le Creuset stainless steel pans, my previous pans being so old I can’t remember when or where I got them. My cookery books are organised by author, and I’ve found one that I don’t recall ever seeing before and didn’t know I owned.

I absolutely hate the mess and disruption of redecoration – especially of the kitchen. The contents of it ended up scattered throughout our other downstairs rooms. When it came to putting it all back, I first took those things which I actually use. Most of the rest I flung out, sent to Oxfam, or I regret to say, put in the loft. As you get tired, you put more things in the ‘Discard’ pile because it’s easier. (John says to me, What is this collection? I reply, That’s the ‘I don’t care what happens to them’ stuff.)

However there are some things you never throw out. I have retained, hanging from a nail, a tiny pair of blue ceramic clogs, brought back by John from Holland decades ago for some child. I also make space for five ceramic dishes, five sided, about the size of an egg-cup, bought in Asakuso, Tokyo and painted with orange symbols. I’ve never found any use for them. And there’s the green Mateus Rose bottle, carried in on the Atlantic and scuffed by Hebridean sand, and picked up 40 years ago by me from the beach where my grandparents’ house stood.

So now I have a nice clean and tidy kitchen. Perhaps I’d better cook in it.


About adhocannie
I am a good natured woman with a long memory and a swift tongue. I like loooking at things and thinking about them. Also food, clothes, travel, reading, sewing. I try to see the ridiculous in things, but sobriety of reflection keeps edgting in. I have husband, children, grandchildren, friends... I feel rich in things that matter. I am a happy exile. I like writing. I do not like talking about me (though I do.). You willl be much more interesting.

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