Heavier house cleaning was
saved for the one day Jimbo came to help. On this particular day Dee had
chosen the task of cleaning the upholstery on her 28 year old chairs. The
day was extremely hot which was perfect for letting them dry.
The recliners were dusty
even though they had been vacuumed regularly. It was just the way of
things because they lived in the country. Did they encroach on the wheat
fields or was it the fields pushing in on them? At any rate during the
late summer after harvest came the plowing of the fields. It wasn't
plowing like had been done when Dee was a girl with deep set turned over
rows. The up dated knowledge of the farmer these days simply had him
saving the straw from the wheat for a mulch on top of the ground. There
was still a good amount of dust though as the farmer worked his fields.
The chairs had been cleaned
many times and there were places on the arms to tell of this. “I can't
find a chair I like. It is like the hats of the children's book, you
know. One is too spotty, too tall, too blue, too uncomfortable and on and
on.” Dee complained to Jimbo.
“It hasn't been that long
ago we cleaned these.” Jimbo observed.
Dee depended on him to keep
a mental “set of books” as to their cleaning. Of course, it was always
just a ring around the rosey, thing. They started at one place and worked
their way back around eventually to where they had started.
Jimbo never complained.
Only once when she wanted to move a heavy file cabinet did he say
something. “As I remember that thing is almost impossible to move.”
With his reminder she
remembered the one time they had moved it and decided it should stay just
where it was, permanently. “You are definitely right about that. I do
The chairs were not that
difficult to move and Jimbo had the hang of it.
“Where do you want these?”
“I want them out in the
sun. They will dry with no worries today. No damp musty smell. It's a
perfect day for it.”
The chairs were awkward in
size but not heavy. Jimbo dutifully dragged them to the outdoors where Dee
wanted them. The next thing was getting the rug shampoo machine out which
was a small chore. The problem with it was remembering all the little
steps for putting the thing together. There was a small container for the
actual cleaner, a larger container for the rinse water, and, of course,
only one way would work. Remembering which buttons to push for changing
the machine over to upholstery rather than carpet came into the picture
“Can you remember which
button I push for what?” Dee asked.
“No.” Jimbo didn't
hesitate with an answer.
“Oh well! Rats! I was
sure you would know. I mean this is just something we do everyday.” Dee
was comfortable in joking with Jimbo. Their many years of acquaintance
gave this to them both.
“Let's see. It says
here.” Jimbo was reading what was on the machine.
“There you go, reading the
instructions again.” Dee chided.
“Hmm. Still doesn't mean
we are in business yet.” Jimbo was grinning.
After they had the machine
working Dee realized although the heat of the day was perfect for drying
fabric it wasn't exactly the best time to work. In a little while they
were both almost light headed with the exertion of pulling and pushing the
cleaning nozzle back and forth over the chair. Finally, Dee was
satisfied with the looks of the chairs. Without a doubt they were
brighter and were beginning to look like their former self, other than the
frayed edges of the arms.
After Jimbo left Dee found
herself on the couch in front of the television. She was thoroughly wrung
out and exhausted. Later when Sam came in the back door from off a job
she noticed he was rummaging in the cabinet where she stored cleaning
products. He went back out the door with a can of disinfectant spray.
“Oh golly! I wonder if he
is going to spray those chairs. Oh no!” She was up and off the couch in
“You aren't putting that
stuff on those chairs? We just spent the afternoon cleaning them.”
Sam looked up at her.
“Well, it is like this. As I was coming around the corner, Tray was
lifting his leg and adding his bit to the project.”
“I must be hysterical but
somehow or another that strikes me as being funny. Hmmm, Tray again?
That dog, that dog. Oh my! I just thought. Don't tell Jimbo.”
Fortunately the place
visited was on the side of the chair was where there was only fabric and
no cushioning material. Dee simply took the hose and ran it over and over
again on the fabric. Tray stood off at a distance watching her.
“Just come on over here
again, Mr. Tray. See what happens to you while I have this hose in my
Tray simply turned his head and looked away, as if to say, “So?”