International Woman’s Day

It was International Woman’s Day today so I fulfilled my duties as a woman in as International a way as possible. I phoned Boston and Saratoga, Chatham and Hackney, Devon and Wales and even pinged a text to Togo. I think that’s pretty International dont you?
Having lived with the old git for forty three and a half years our pink and blue jobs have never been demarcated. I cook, he washes up. Sometimes I cook AND wash up. Lots of times he cooks and I wash the dishes. He makes a pump for the cellar I mop up after him, I hand him the hammer and he uses it. That isn’t to say that I dont know how to wield a hammer or that he’s not half bad with a wok. Although I have to admit that sometimes he does mansplain – take today when he had the audacity to tell me how to mop – but did I complain? No I just told him to bugger off and carried on slopping out the carpet sludge like a Mexican housekeeper swinging her hips to the Danza de los Diablos. This year we had to spend International Woman’s Day tending to our waterlogged cellar. For three days the rain seeped into the cellar from the front garden. The water tables are high, and even though we live on top of the second highest point around the sloppy water got in. Two rugs on the floor are ruined. The red ‘Habitat’ one, thats followed us from flat to cottage leaked beetroot coloured juice into the puddle and the Persian one has left little balls of authentic Persian wool all over the floor. Three sponge mops, two drying mops, buckets and a brain wave from the ‘oosbind has done the trick. He concocted a make shift pump, when it stopped sucking up the water we chucked sheets and blankets and old cotton sweaters onto the floor, bunged them into the washing machine to spin-dry, unloaded them onto the floor again, spun them again and voila a damp but walkable room again. The two rugs are rolled up in buckets until they dry whilst the cellar now smells like a cow shed mixed with wet whippet and clammy Airtex knickers.
So this is how March 8th panned out. I went to get the papers and Coronavirus panic had hit ‘Waitrose’. Most of the pasta had gone from the shelves and there wasn’t a mellow and smooth ‘Koko’ yoghurt to be found anywhere, apparently there’s a cock up in the supply chain.
Then I accompanied my husband, in a ladylike fashion sitting side saddle in the car, as we went to ‘Homebase’ to buy a bit of hose pipe for our aforementioned waterworks. Graham, an elderly assistant walked us to the plumbing aisle, we spent six pounds on a flimsy piece of rubber that the old git said should do the trick. I picked up four bunches of daffodils for two quid and carried the posy to the car. See pink jobs and blue jobs!
If I sound a little cynical don’t get me wrong I’ve been shouting about women’s rights since I could depilate – not something we ever talked about in the 70’s – have stood on stage and fronted a band comprised of men – 70’s men – who liked nothing better than to pinch my pert buttocks and sneak a peek as I changed in the lavatories in the endless stream of working mens clubs we performed in. I stood my ground and gave as good as I got, now I applaud young women who don’t take any nonsense whilst I weep at the treatment of women in countries where lashings and beatings are still used as a form of control. International Woman’s day 2020 and we watch homeless, stateless women attempting to shield their babies and children from the madness of cruel, power hungry bastardmen.
I applaud Scotland for recognising that women’s sanitary products should be free, hurrah for our brave loud mouthed harridans. But I also think nappies should be free too after all babies only shit in them.
Which reminds me I went for a brisk 30 minuter. The sheep were in the field. 17 of them looking after 16 little lambs that did that lovely lamb thing of jumping up and down, I believe it’s called gamboling. The dawter named one of the ewes Angela, so I called for her but couldn’t remember her given name so called her Margery instead. A lovely old ewe with 12 painted on her wool stood looking at me, dropping pellets and eyeballing me in case I touched her babies which off course I didn’t. I told her her little lambykins were safe with me as I don’t eat anything with a face.
So, International Woman’s Day came and went. I received lovely posts from Japanese activists and East End broads, Mancunian business women and Italian dancers. The ‘oosbind made me a lovely cafetier of coffee as I read the papers and mused on how we’d saved our cottage from subsidence working together harmoniously. Him calling the shots and me ignoring them.
I enjoy being a girl, there aint nothing like a dame and if Billy Joel is correct I’ll always be a woman to him. As for good old Bobby Dylan apparently I take just like a woman but break just like a little girl. There we go mansplaining again, let me tell you Bobby when I break it ain’t like a little girl it’s like a 48 thousand ton battle ship with all guns blaring. I do think, however, that every day should be International Woman’s Day, and mens day and babies day and lambs day and tree day and cuckoo day……you get my drift we should honour everybody every day. On my walk I heard a woodpecker and talked to the chickens who always come running to say hello, maybe we should have an International Hen Day too.
Back in 1865 William Ross Wallace wrote a poem that praised motherhood as the preeminent force for change in the world. ‘The Hand That Rocks the Cradle Is the Hand That Rules the World.’
So from mothers to sisters from nieces to daughters, from grannies to aunties and also to Nuns; God Bless us all.

1 thought on “International Woman’s Day”

  1. Jeni Barnett………… you are so, definately my hero………. and more importantly my wife’s hero and my daughters too!
    We LOVE you!
    The Borowski family!

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