...in a variety of interesting and perplexing ways.
I wasn't sure what to call this blog, for fear of causing offence. Anyway, point is, my life has changed in the past couple of days, enriched (obviously) by the arrival - on a permanent basis - of Mrs Webby as a regular flatmate, rather than just a weekend visitor. She's happy - I don't make her lug an enormous bag of hair straighteners across London on public transportation (her weekend bugbear - and unfortunately mine is driving). I'm happy, because someone else is doing my laundry and hoovering and dusting and cleaning. You might call that indentured slavery; I prefer symbiosis.
Anyway, the die has been cast for a final time. The tears - mainly mine - have dried and vanished (rather like my collection of framed Oxford United shirts). Let domestic bliss reign. The flat looks amazing - freshly painted, freshly carpeted, freshly disinfected. Who knows - another five years of this and it might be worth what I paid for it. Exciting times. No regrets.
But two days in to The Good Life, let me count the changes. First up, I can no longer sleep like a snow angel from Monday-Friday. Disappointing. Second, I've had to scrap my plans to turn the spare bedroom over to my den, to be filled with an enormous Rod Stewart-esque train set. I've heard people (i.e. men of a certain age) play with toy trains because they can create a world over which they have complete control. Fascistic, maybe - but then remember what Mussolini did for the Italian rail network? That control is now gone from my life. That control has been replaced with the politburo dictat that Everything Has To Go In The Dishwasher Immediately After Use. IMMEDIATELY.
Puzzlingly, my small stock of soft furnishings have disappeared, to be replaced to a myriad selection of thousands of others. My duvet covers have been trashed (or at least hidden where I can no longer find them). My bed now has a suspicious blanket draped over the bottom third. What's that for? And what was wrong with my old duvet cover? It's not like it had Thundercats on it. All my favourite pillows have gone, the lovely ones filled with polystyrene or foam or whatever it was. Gone. My Oxford United clock - which I've owned since the age of six - has been relegated to the hallway. The ticking was annoying, allegedly. I woke on Sunday (the first morning of co-habitation), turned balefully to the wall, and quickly realised that the (admittedly lovely) print of ye olde Balham didn't tell the time.
The sofa, for so long the bain of Mrs Webby's existence (sample quote: "it's so turgid") has been covered with a variety of wooly blankets and colourfully-printed cushions. All the furniture has already been moved around - the room may look bigger, but I enjoyed having all my stuff instantly available for scrutiny. A new coffee table - painted in faded blue and then artfully chipped to make it look "rustic chic" - has been purchased. I'm told the room is still profoundly masculine, although the permanently-lit scented candle on the said coffee table is making me menstruate.
More to follow anon. If I survive the night.