Can there be anything in the world quite as boring as the kitchen sink? And if it is so boring, why am i even bothering to write about it? Legitimate question indeed, and one for which i have all the answers ready. But before i jump headlong into the myriad reasons for writing about something so…well…dull….let me tell you a little story. The story is about every common man (or woman) who visits another’s home for a social visit. What do we all oooh and aaah about when the host (or hostess) says with a grand gesture: ‘Come and see my house’? We admire and praise everything from the beautiful lounge and ottoman set to the sparkling bathroom right down to the well-manicured gardens. When we tour through the kitchen, we gaze at the granite bench tops and the endless rows of cabinets, sighing with pleasure because like most people, we believe the more storage space the better. And there in a forgotten corner lies the little kitchen sink which shrinks into oblivion as we walk right past it with barely a cursory glance, thrown its way mainly to find out if the hostess has been keeping up with her dish washing duties or not. No one is interested in praising the kitchen sink…for what, after all, is there to praise about it?
But for me, my kitchen sink is where life happens….
As the years rolled by, here is what happened as i stood at the kitchen sink……
As i stood at the kitchen sink, which looks onto our backyard, i used to watch my children frolic in the grass. As toddlers, they would run around while throwing a ball at each other and i would watch, while washing the dishes, to make sure they were ok.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would play referee to the endless arguments between the child who thought he was right and the child who thought she was right. Scrubbing the greasy saucepan with a vigour born of teary frustration, i would yell out that the fighting must stop right then, or else…..
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would ponder over what to prepare for dinner. The dull monotonous swishing-swashing of the soapy water would calm the mind enough to pluck from its confused recesses a fitting menu for dinner that night.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would sing (off-key) at the top of my voice….it somehow helped the time go faster and brushed up karaoke skills as best it could.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would supervise the children’s homework…They would stand by my side as i rinsed the pressure cooker, asking me to check if their sums were right.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would stare at those same maths problems and say with a tiny sigh “Darlings, maths really is not mummy’s scene. Can we wait till daddy gets home?’
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would talk endlessly with my friends on the phone, my shoulder scrunched up to hold the receiver in place as i scrubbed the pizza platter, clearing it of all the crusty crumbs.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would talk across the house with my husband, asking him how his day at work was. Often i would not hear his replies clearly (he was after all at the other end of the house), but it felt good to simply hear his voice.
As i stood at the kitchen sink, I would tune in my ear to the movie every one else was watching in the lounge room, and would pause the washing for a few moments to walk in and watch a favourite scene, returning to the scrubbing a few moments later.
So, dear friends, the kitchen sink is where much of life happens for many of us. I can seldom walk through any home without glancing kindly at the kitchen sink and wondering about the countless life stories it has seen unfold.