The minutiae of married life

Some years ago, on a visit to see my in-laws, we bought some plates in Norwich.  They are very nice plates - plain, simple, functional.  I remember that they weighed a ton and were given to us in a number of plastic bags so that we could get them back to the car via the park and ride.  I carried them through the streets of the city as if they were the finest porcelain.  They weren't but you get the idea.

When we married, we were given some very generous gifts from friends and family, the kind of functional stuff married couples hope for to kit out the new home.  It's a bit silly these days given that we generally live with our partners before getting married and thus we have most of the essentials a house needs: nevertheless, we were extremely grateful for the various gifts and for the vouchers  which allowed us to buy a range of additional items which you wouldn't really get for a wedding present. 

We bought a pedal bin - a much loved (by me) item which I refuse to get rid of despite the fact that it has endured 18 years of abuse and neglect.  It remains, for me, a treasured item.  We also bought another mundane item, a glass water filter to replace a plastic one which could not be cleaned properly as, to deal with the limescale around the spout and the rim, it needed scrubbing and this scratched the plastic. Little things.

We jealously guard the last of a set of bowls bought when we got engaged using a voucher given to us by an aunt. The rest have been broken but the last one persists - for how long, nobody knows.

Such are the mundane things which make a home.  They are each very ordinary but they all have their individual associations and memories.

All of which makes it inexplicable to me that my wife will never, ever use a plate when she helps herself to a snack.  Instead of the fine plates or the special bowl, kitchen roll is deployed, used, screwed up then discarded.

I carried those plates for what felt like miles!

As for that water filter - the one which keeps the limescale out of the kettle.  Well, why bother when there's a perfectly good tap?



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