Wednesday, 23 June 2021

SUCK UP THIS PRESSING STORY ABOUT A HOOVER AND AN IRONING BOARD...


Somewhere I have a photograph of a Hoover I remember my mother having in the first house I can recall waking up in, though there was a previous abode I've absolutely no memory of, where said dust-sucking implement could also have resided.  The photo was taken in the second previous house to my current one, which will confuse you if you're not a regular reader of this blog.  You see, my family first took up residence here in 1972 and moved elsewhere in 1983.  However, just over 4 years later, we moved back again, meaning we lived in one house before moving in here the first time, and another house before moving back again in 1987.  I forget where the photo is, but when I find it I'll add it to the post.

The Hoover made it back here with us, meaning that it's been in every house I remember, but it didn't get to stay for long.  I no longer recall whether it was days, weeks, or a couple of months, but my mother bought a new vacuum cleaner and 'old faithful', who I'd known from my infancy to adulthood, was put out in the back garden next to the rubbish bin, for disposal when the refuse collectors (that's bin men, Melvin) came to collect our garbage.  This was more than half my lifetime away, back in the day when households had only one bin, and before we had to take out our own trash and do the council's job for them.

I find myself missing this Hoover from time-to-time.  I wish I still had it because I have many happy memories of reading comics on the settee when I was a kid, and having to lift my feet as my mother vacuumed under my legs and around me.  In fact, I miss every item of furniture we ever had and that I no longer own, and if I could, I'd buy replacements for every last stick of it and quite easily allow myself to believe that they're the original pieces from my childhood and teenage years.  To be able to live here with all the furniture and fittings that we brought with us back in 1972 (most of them dating from the late '50s and early '60s, thereby reflecting earlier houses too), well, that's my idea of Utopia.

So, fellow Crivvies - what's yours?

But before you tell me (if you do), here's another part of the story.  In the back garden of the second 'previous' residence, my father had a greenhouse.  At some stage my mother bought a new ironing board, the old one, same as the Hoover, having been with us from at least the '60s.  My father requisitioned it for his greenhouse and laid out boxes of tomato plants on top of it, but when we moved back here, he left it where it was.  After a couple of weeks back in our old home, I started to feel a bit guilty about its abandonment so went back to the house we'd flitted from and offered the guy with whom we'd swapped a couple of quid for it.  He was perfectly agreeable as he had no need for it, so a fortnight or so after our flit, the old ironing board also made it back to be reunited with its 'comrades'.

Why was it so important to me?  Well, I've always been in the habit of carefully ironing my comics if there's even a hint of a creased or curved corner or spine, and over the years it had been done on that very ironing board, so I couldn't just walk away from it.  It hasn't been used in decades now (since that day my mother got a new one in fact), but it's stored in my shed and hopefully isn't too warped or decayed in the less-than-desirable conditions of its acrylic container in the back garden.  Maybe one day I'll clean it up and start using it again, but even if I don't, it's nice to know that it's still there and can be 'pressed' into service if required.  (Yes, that was a deliberate ironing pun.)

Anyway, while you reel in shock at my obvious insanity, I'll retire for the moment before you start demanding that someone signs the papers for my committal.  No point in giving anyone even more ammunition.  Blurble!

However, I have to ask - has there ever been something you left somewhere that you went back for - or didn't, but now wish you had?  If so, spill the Heinz 57 in the comments section.

16 comments:

Phil S said...

The old garden gnome from my mom’s house . My brother has it. I should get a new one.

Kid said...

A new old garden gnome sounds ideal, PS. Buy one today.

McSCOTTY said...

I wish I had been able to keep some of my grans ( my dad's mum) things when she passed. Sadly at the time I didn't have a car and was working in Glasgow , having moved back home on special leave from London as my Dad had died only a few months earlier and I needed to look after my mum ( my dad died driving his car and mum was a passenger and was badly injured and heartbroken at losing my dad of course). Anyway gran had lots of wee knick knacks around the house and although my brother ( who had a car) got me a couple of items from her house there were a few things that reminded me of my gran and dad I would have loved. A coin stuck in lava from Mount Vesuvius my dad had from the war, a small musical instrument ( can't recall the name) my dad payed, a monkey head ( not real) my gran kept dish clothes in that fascinated me as a kid etc. Sadly my bother had the house cleared , which we had to get done of course but i would have loved those items

Kid said...

That's a shame about your mum and dad having a car crash (I assume), McS, must have been a terrible experience for your mum. There's a few items in my house that belonged to my maternal grandparents which my mother got when they went into an old folks home, and I recall most of them from their flat around the corner from us. (Though as we moved several times over the years, so we didn't always live around the corner.)

If you saw duplicate items to some of the ones your gran had (in a charity shop or jumble sale) would you buy them as stand-ins because of the memories they elicit? I bought a little porcelain log once because it was the double of one I inadvertently broke about 30 years earlier and it was just like having the original one back again.

McSCOTTY said...

My dad took a heart attack ( out of the blue just had an all clear medical the week before) while driving the car thankfully no one was hurt ( he would have hated that) apart from my wee mum who shattered part of her spine ( she could walk but had pain).

If I saw the Monkey Head (made from coconut I think) I would pick it up. The coin in lava is unlikely to be replaced as my dad pressed a farthing into it during the war as a memento of his time in Italy so it was pretty unique.

McSCOTTY said...

I think I saw that porcelain log on your blog and iirc we had that as well in the 1960s. I've seen a few of these in Glasgow and where I am on my holidays ( south coast of England) but wouldn't buy them again as it wasn't a "major" family ornament.

Kid said...

Well, here's hoping that the monkey head pops up in a charity shop around your way soon, McS. When you discover something that you had in the past and wanted to own again, it really brightens up your whole day. Have you thought about trying to re-create the coin in lava, or don't you remember what type of coin it was?

As for the porcelain log, I've since picked up another one (and a couple of slightly smaller ones) from a charity shop which is practically pristine, but the original one wasn't perfect, so the first replacement is much more like it as it has the odd petal-chip. The way they were made, I'm not sure that any two were exactly the same, but the one I got a good few years back is probably as close to it as it's possible to get. It certainly fills its predecessor's space in my memory.

McSCOTTY said...

Yeah it was a UK farthing kid, the problem would be getting lava not the coin. But in this case the original only would be of interest to me for its meaning and that's gone now. I still have the memory of it and a few other items from my dad's time in the war.

Kid said...

Yes, of course, a farthing - I'd forgotten you named it in your second comment, McS. A bit of cement or concrete to simulate the lava, perhaps? But as long as you've got a few other items to remind you, that's the important thing.

Dave S said...

What do you put on top of comics while you're ironing them, Kid?

I'm assuming you put something on to protect them while ironing out the crease, like greaseproof paper or a tea towel maybe?

Kid said...

Not a tea towel, DS, 'cos that would imprint the texture of the fabric onto the comic. I use a bit of brown paper, sometimes a double sheet depending on how bad the crease is and how hot the iron needs to be. It works better on UK paper comics, but can, if you're careful and know what you're doing, be effective on US glossy covers as well. I also put a sheet of brown paper underneath the page being ironed. Practise first on some old comics you're not planning on keeping if you're planning on trying it, because sometimes you can lift the colour off if you're not careful.

Terranova47 said...

When my parents downsized from my childhood home in 2001 to move to an assisted living location it meant that I finally had to ship my stuff out of the house and on to the US even though I had been carrying stuff in luggage every trip since 1974.

Your mention of a Hoover being meaningful to your past reminded me of the GOBLIN vacuum cleaner my parents had from the early 50's. It was a black cylinder with chrome bands that had a beautiful printed tin badge of a red Goblin.

It was replaced in 1970 by a far more powerful Electrolux vacuum cleaner, the Goblin was given away to a neighbour.

Some years later a black painted diecast toy van appeared, possibly by Matchbox, with a similar Goblin image on it's side. I bought one immediately.

Dave S said...

Interesting. I once had a paperback book that got a huge crease right across the cover. I left it for a week with a wooden tea tray on top of it and a 5kg weight on top of the tray.

Didn't really know how well it would work but was amazed with the result. I still have the book and looked at it recently - there is very little sign of the crease, although it was quite thick paper- not sure that would work so well on comics.

Kid said...

Goblin were famous for their teasmades (I thought it was teasmaids 'til I looked it up), but I'm not sure whether I've ever seen their vacuum cleaners, T47. Now that you've mentioned that diecast toy van, I'll have to see if I can track one down for myself.

******

Another trick, DS, is to dampen the crease just before pressing as that usually decreases the crease (hey, see what I did there?) even more. I'd have thought thick paper would be even harder on which to lessen a crease so I'm surprised you can hardly see it on your book.

Dave S said...

Haha the weights flattened that crease out good and proper- there were actually two weights, so it was 10kg pressing on it. The wooden tray was never quite itself afterwards though- things placed on it tended to lean alarmingly to one side.

Kid said...

So it was a case of flatten a book, bend a tray, eh? Can't win.



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