Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

6 Nisan 5759 - March 24, 1999 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly

















Home and Family
If Spring Is In The Air, Then How Come Bleach Is The Only Scent I Notice?
by Linda Dayan

She hangs there with bits of confetti dripping from her horse hair. Even my dear broom looks as if she has a hangover from yesterday's Purim excitement.

And I sit there wondering what the real reason is that women also wake up a bit overwhelmed on this day, and seem to try to "recover." Should we assume that it is the exhaustion due to: dressing those little ones in costumes, sending mishloach manot, cooking and eating (and over- eating) a seuda and running out to hear the Megillah?

Yes, but ladies, we all know that it is more than that. We know the truth. Even while we are laundering Queen Esther's gown and storing the beards, hats and groggers, our minds are busy delving into the not-so-far-away future: that other holiday that also begins with the letter P...

In my younger years, I sat outside with my little ones, sharing thoughts with other mothers on park benches. Together, we were seeking to find good ideas on how to "finish" on time (while still remaining sane).

I've gone to lectures of wonderful rebbetzins who gave hints galore from their many years of experience.

My personal library consists of a mountain of books on how to unclutter, de- dust, organize, re-organize, clean and shine just about everything that didn't move. Some books even gave some home-made "potions." Neighbors would enter our home convinced that I was pickling enough cucumbers for the whole block; when in reality, my stainless steel faucets were ever- so-shiny from a vinegar concoction.

I have used toothbrushes for the rubber around my fridge, the corners of my counters, the soap dispenser of my washing machine and so many other places that I forgot what the toothbrush was originally invented for. And who ever said that Q-tips are meant to clean ears? I beg to differ.

Listening to tapes has always been great for me. I heard tapes on what I have to clean, why, how and when. I worked late into the night or got up before the first riser to make the day seem 25 hours long. I raced to clean the kitchen early but somehow, it was always too early.

Amongst those entering our humble abode over the years have been Seminary girls, Yeshiva bochurim, and we even enlisted... yes, our own offspring, to chip in their youthful energy. A big, scary, steaming machine was dragged in for the hard-to-get-to places (which I was better off not getting to).

I've washed dolls until their owners claimed that they never met them and have no desire to. My washing machine enjoyed the company of pillowcases filled with lego and stained tupperware.

I beat rugs, scrubbed corners and anxiously attempted to vanquish any crumb that dared to appear within my reach.

But this year, I said to myself, is going to be different. No, I'm not claiming that I will not adopt any of the ideas that I have collected in the past twenty years. But I hope b'siyata dishmiya, that this erev Pesach, will be different. How? I want to do it (bli neder!) B'SIMCHA - in joy. That will be a new, higher level and I have a strong feeling that it will even make it much easier.


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