Catching the light


I couldn’t believe it. I’d cleaned the damned things, just the day before, but the windows at the side of the house were once again festooned with cobwebs. Not only that, but at first glance and before my first coffee, they looked filthy. I was not best pleased.

Cleaning windows has never been my favourite job. No matter what I use, there is always a streak or a haze, corners I’ve missed or fluff left behind… and my little flat has a lot of windows for its size, streaming light onto every speck of dust that settles. Not only that, but arthritis and window-cleaning do not work well together.

Granted, the windows are all now within reach…no more dangling precariously out of upper floors in an attempt to clean glass in frames designed by some warped and evil mind. At least these days, I only need a step-stool to reach the top corners and anyone not quite so vertically challenged would be able to clean them with ease.


I sipped my coffee in the kitchen eyeing the windows with distaste. It wasn’t until I opened the garden doors for Ani that it occurred to me that the ‘filth’ was probably moisture. She bounded out, laughing, into a morning cocooned in golden mist rising from the fields. The grass was heavy with dew that sparkled as soft light streamed in, illuminating my little home.

The first rays of the newly-freed sun slanted horizontally through the window, touching the plant a visiting friend had brought me and drawing an answering gleam of gold from the little yellow flowers. I smiled. As always, a small shift in perspective, this time caffeine-induced, shows things in a very different light.

Caffeine has its uses… my world is a much better place after coffee. The sun was starting to break through as I wandered back to the kitchen in search of a second dose and glanced again at the offending window. The cobweb was on the outside… I could live with that… and the ‘dirt’ was indeed moisture that was catching the sun and shimmering as I moved, changing my visual perspective and seeing the light running through the silken threads of the web.

What had been, a few minutes earlier, an annoyance, was now a thing of beauty and wonder. How often, I thought, is that the case… that it takes only a step away from a perceived problem to see it instead as a gift? If I hadn’t tackled the detested and painful job of window-cleaning, I would have ignored the cobweb. If I hadn’t looked with frustration at the pane, I would not have seen the play of morning light. If dirty windows didn’t matter, I would never have caught a rainbow.


26 thoughts on “Catching the light

  1. I’ve been pleased with the following for encouraging the local fauna to safe refuge in sheds that will be mucked out come next spring, once they move into the ‘jungle’ and report for duty – LOL – instead of rooming with me in the winter (AND causing extra household duties – seriously?!!) – 1 terra cotta planter base (any size, 3″-4″ will do, recharged every 2 months or so…) Equal blend of Peppermint & Lavender essential oil, with a dash of Cedarwood added (festive for holidays – and drifts up into main space – ) – add drops of mixture to terra cotta disc, until cant absorb anymore, place in strategic places – and say, “Um…yeah…works better for me and You if you are willing to hole up somewhere across the yard for winter – – ” – 🙂

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  2. ** Backup plan – move with butter knife, gently to the dark corner of the cellar fartherst away from main level entry way – with a gentle, “Mother Nature? Can you handle and explain the local Home Owner’s Association guidelines? Cuz seriously – you KNOW if they jump out at me, when I’m checking on the water heater, during the blizzard, I’ll just be a mass murder, once again…. 🙂


  3. Beautiful writing Sue, and love the change of perspective. My world is also far better in the morning after caffeine. As for the windows, life is too short to waste constantly cleaning. Sparkling windows are nice to look through but fresh air is even better, where the view is all around you, and not just a tiny fraction glimpsed through glass.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautifully put, Sue. Although I am pleased you have a shifting perspective, enabling you to see the beauty most of us miss… I fail to see anything but annoyance with the countless webs we have to put up with. In the garden, they can be beautiful, but draped all over the walls and furniture, no.


    1. I have never really had a problem with spiders… until being landed in hospital by one earlier this year. You don’t expect it in England. No now I would prefer to appreciate them from a distance 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

        1. The little sod bit my foot five times in the car and left me looking like an elephant from the knee down…and at the hospital too. Sadly, I was also allergic to the antibiotics they gave me…which was an interesting experience I’m in no hurry to repeat. 😦 xx

          Liked by 1 person

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