Oh What A Lovely Floor.

Apologies to the film ‘Oh what a lovely war’. In this world of wonderful new inventions and the subsequent scary implications of their adoption it’s nice to hear of an ‘old fashioned remedy’ that really works.

We share household tasks in a sort of 50:50 split, where I complete a random selection representing around 10% of the total and Mary finishes the rest. As I said a true 50:50 man split. The one crucial area under my command is cleaning floors.This has evolved due to occasions whereby my efforts elsewhere have not met muster. We’ll discount cooking and its alarming need to follow instructions like recipes. Floor cleaning is my forte.

I have diligently tried every know proprietary potion to clean floors with a range of success. I am seen wandering around the cleaning isle at ASDA on a mission. But we have some stone flags and quarry tiles lying horizontally in the direction of down. These defy modern cleaning solutions. Thus is was a revelation when Mary spotted an article in an English Heritage publication. “How to clean a stone floor” as practiced a few hundred years ago when they knew what they were doing and there wasn’t a cleaning isle at ASDA. To clean stone floor and develop a sheen to the finish you clean it with skimmed milk. Yep your read that right, skimmed milk. Not full fat or ‘owt else – they leave streaks.

I have tried it and it works amazingly. OK there is a slight odour like a dairy but it only lasts a hour of so. What is truly amazing is how much muck milk removes. I pre-washed the floor using a branded product then used the milk. The colour of the cloth was truly incredible. And lo and behold etc. a residual sheen appeared. Previously I had tried all manner of sealants to effect this finish without success – apart from using an industrial electric polisher and floor polish. The result, some yers ago was a shiny but lethal finish. Everyone skidded across the floor threatening legal action. This I took on the chin and refused to ‘sort it’ until our cat shot across the floor and rammed a closed door. Now our moggy already had an extensive vocabulary but on this occasion took to extending the range considerably. The look of thunder and the clearly disgruntled vocalisation took us all by surprise. The household vote was for the immediate removal of the polish, which I recall was observed by our cat who sat and watched throughout the process. Can’t help thinking if he was still alive today he would have totally approved of the milk remedy.

Alistair Owens

The meandering thoughts of someone with too much time on his hands. Tending to see the obscure and irrelevant in most events I have been forced to record this by family members as a means of diverting attention away from them. But I see their plan.

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