I was over eighteen the first time I washed a floor. Can you believe it? I remember early in my first year at TUKS telling my friend Kholofelo I had never washed a floor before. She was flabbergasted. Her reaction made me realise that there was a part of life I had up to then not participated in. The next weekend at home I took a bucket and a mop and washed the kitchen floor. It wasn’t horrible. It wasn’t terrific. But it resulted in a clean floor and I could say I’d washed a floor. I felt enabled.
The reason I missed out on all those life skills of course is that mine was a traditional South African middle class family of the eighties. We had a sleep in maid most of the time. The maid always washed the floors!
I started late but I’m an expert by now
Well, I am forty now and for most of my adult life I have done the cleaning myself. No-one can count how many times I have washed floors. In fact, I am quite a pro. I can even write a blog about my preferences. 😉
- I hate traditional mops. They stink. And all they do is slop dirty water around on the floor.
- I hate dipping my mop into a bucket of dirty water. I cannot imagine dirty water cleaning anything.
- I dislike wax based detergents that promise to clean and polish your floor at the same time. They cause wax build up that eventually discolours and then your grouting is permanently dirty!
My method? I like a broad, flat microfiber mop. I spray our very own FLOOR onto the floor, neat, and wipe it off with the mop. Then I rinse the mop in clean water (normally running water at the bath or whichever tap is closest at the moment) and repeat until the job is done. The next time I go over the floor with water only. This way I know the microbes are on the floor long enough to do their job, and the soap is eventually rinsed off. Not that leaving it on the floor would be a problem, really. FLOOR does not contain anything that could build up.
And my kids help. I will not let them turn 18 before washing a floor. Washing floors is as much a part of life as brushing your teeth and I will teach them how to do it. I will resist the notion that certain mundane skills are not important to learn because someone else will do it. Any skill enables. And being able to just ‘get on with it’ is priceless too.
Still, my house is only ever spotless two minutes before guests arrive. Even with help. Please tell me I am not alone?