• Cecilia Macaulay

Year's End Big Clean, or Big Laze?

Updated: Dec 28, 2018


Waterhole lounging with family, Turpins Falls, Victoria

I don't know which to do. Japanese spend the last week of the year doing O-soji, or Big Clean. They scrub every surface, change the paper on the folding screens, even wash the dog. This makes the New Year truly new. Your house is fresh and innocent, with no left-over debts to what happened before. How motivating that would be. Its to purify your spirit, and to welcome the Shinto gods of the New Year. Its the super-deluxe version of cleaning before important visitors arrive.

The Australian tradition is to go camping with your mates between Chrismas and New Year, and laze beside a dappled river. You get to say 'This is whats precious. This is what the whole year's work was about, setting ups up to bliss out on simply being alive and together, in this gumtree-scented world.' I like the photo above, taken by my sister a few years ago at Turpins Falls. The gloves were to reminded me I'd injured my elbow and to stop picking things up, but with glamour, no sympathy needed. Which worked. Nice design.


Ah, I've just now got the answer! Cleaning is tedious, but not if you do it in costumes, and with friends.


1. Find the dress-up box in the garage.

2. Hilltop Hoods music and happy cleaning, because I can.

3. Lolling by the river afterwards, with a Jackie French book.


What a great plan.

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