Monday, 15 October 2007

Domestic science versus domestic arts

Last night at approximately 6pm, my partner looked me in the eye and told me that he didn’t think he’d have our internet connection back up for at least a couple of days. I gulped and tried not to panic. After all, there are so many worse things in the world, aren’t there? I have to say that his abilities are greater than he had confidence in, because everything was working fine within a few hours. I hardly even had time to feel the pain of separation. Afterwards, I tasked him with the question of whether he had really thought we’d be offline for so long. His reply was along the lines of not wanting to raise hopes too high, keeping expectations low and considering all possibilities, in other words, keeping the broadband addict calm and away from her stash, leaving him to do his job in peace. And I’m not complaining, because it all worked out perfectly.

I hear you asking why things were disconnected in the first place? The answer isn’t simple. The plan was to move our office to our former living room when the new part of the house was added. The office would then become play space for the children. The office would have plenty of room and the living room would be in its new expanded location. About four months ago, we bought some new sofas, which awkwardly arrive this afternoon, several months before their new location is ready. The only spot to fit two sofas in our house is what is now the former office. An action plan for the weekend was called for and immediately implemented.

The end result: much furniture moved, a major archaeological dig undertaken behind the filing cabinets and the sofa, a small forest’s worth of forest by-products sent on their way, piles of dust removed, some verification of inanimate objects undertaken, a stunningly tidy office created and an empty playroom awaiting temporary filling with sofas.

I’ve already tried to check my email in the empty room several times and had to redirect my steps. My son is confused: he’s not allowed in the office but he’s not sure now where he is or isn’t allowed to go and you see him hovering in doorways. I can’t recognise a workspace that is clean, light -filled and airy and has all the computing requirements on the same workspace.

For the first time I actually have all my research bits and pieces in one spot so I can now tell you that the Marburg Boy’s Rural School burnt down in 1959, the same year that Marburg had a hail storm with stones the size of cricket balls. The school’s official history from the 125th Anniversary publication outlines the purpose of the rural school as “providing the senior pupils of Primary Schools in country districts special training in Farm Craft and in Domestic Science. They gave both boys and girls a basic knowledge of agricultural science and processes, together with in the case of boys a practical acquaintance with such manual arts as Woodwork, Metalwork and Leatherwork and in the case of girls a knowledge of Domestic Science and ability in Domestic Arts.” I wonder what is the difference between domestic science and domestic arts and if I knew, would behind my sofa have looked so bad?

1 comment:

SybBrig said...

This whole adding-a-house-to-your-house thing is so completely grandly insane by American standards (or at least, this American's) that you must please please include photos. Insane and exciting. It's off-topic for the blog, so maybe you could set up a second blog just for that. Or just take lots of before, during, and after photos and keep them for that day in the hazy future when I figure out how to visit, I can see them all.