Friday, 20 November 2015

Why I hate window cleaners

It's nothing personal, and I do admire anyone who can combine two of the things I most hate: cleaning, and heights. (Our house is on four floors, and the window cleaners teeter on the summit of a long ladder, with spiky railings down below, just waiting like the jaws of hungry crocodiles). So as a rule, I don't hate them. But this morning, I hate ours.

Picture the scene.Actually, better not. Because I was stark naked in the shower, and this bit of ladder and a head appeared at the window. I kept very, very still, and waited for the head to go, hoping it hadn't notived  me (we have a flmsy blind which is rather see-through). When I went next door to the bedroom to dress, the head was there again. It was all too much. I'm still trying to recover (so, I suspect, is the window cleaner. But then I suppose for him, it'sall  part of the job).

Afterwards, I asked very nicely if next time, please could he and his band of colleagues  knock on the door when they arrive, to let us know they're there.

"No time," quoth he. No time, that is, to knock on all the doors. But he said he'd make an exception for us.

So watch this space (so long as that's all you watch).

21 comments:

  1. He sounds like a very considerate window cleaner to me. Four floors with spiky railings below is bad enough. Give him some slack and perhaps a cup of tea next time!!

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    1. If he hasn't time to knock on the door, he's got no time for tea, Maggie.

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  2. Brings up memories for me from a dozen or so years ago, living in my previous flat in a big apartment block. For a looong period of time (months) there was scaffolding outside because of facade renovations going on, while I was more or less stuck at home on sick leave with neck/back pain. No window in my bathroom - but in the bedroom... Besides all the noise I never got used to workers walking past my windows - on the 2nd floor.

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    1. Quite right, DT. Windows are thee to be looked OUT of, not into.

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  3. Like Monica, some years ago there was scaffolding all around our house (where I own one of three flats) for facade renovation. The work seemed to last forever, and with it came the noise, dirt and lack of privacy. Even worse was that at the same time we had a large building site near my work, so that I had noise, dirt and hassle all day there, only to find more of the same at home...

    The thing with window cleaners is funny, you know. In Germany, I do not know anyone who has someone come explicitly to clean their windows. Only office buildings, shops etc. have that. At their private homes, people do it all themselves, except for those who have a cleaning help anyway (such as RJ's parents).
    But in England, I find that it is the perfectly normal thing to do for the perfectly normal household to pay someone to clean their windows. I wonder if that is because your windows are so different from ours in the way they open.

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    1. I would challenge any normal householder to try cleaning our windows, Meike. Four floors? Hmm...

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    1. Well, I'm glad someone's happy, Adrian. I'm still traumatised.

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  5. My husband cleans our windows, well the downstairs ones ! Upstairs seem to keep clean by themselves somehow. I hate the thought of a strange man peering into bedrooms ( or anywhere in the house) seeing what we have got…….TVs, computers, naked bodies, whatever!

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    1. Self cleaning windows. Now there's an idea, Frances.

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  6. A similar thing happened to my daughter once when she walked into her bedroom from the bathroom only to find the window cleaner grinning at her. It was only when I heard her squeal of indignation that I realised I should have warned her.

    The window cleaner we have now does it all from the ground with a tank and a long brush/hose (which wouldn't be practical for a house with four floors) xx

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    1. Actually I think ladders are frowned I by Health and Safety, Teresa. But out window cleaners have no truck with H&S.

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  7. Not good for you... but very entertaining for us, Frances.

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    1. Wendy, years ago, when this Hadn't yet happened, I sold a story about a woman in her bath and a window cleaner. Maybe I should do it again...

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  8. Exactly what Wendy said, Frances. I am chuckling away! xxx

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    1. Oh well. Some good as come out ot it then, Joanna!

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  9. Completely feel for you, Frances, even though it sounds funny! We don't get the window cleaners now for which I'm grateful as I used to hate them appearing at all hours. Don't know how long DH will continue to clean them, though.

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  10. Who's DH, Rosemary? And can I have his/her number, please?

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  11. Reminds me of a George Formby song.

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    1. Ah. George Formby. You've got a point, Keith.

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  12. The comments on this post say lots about us, blogging in general and this subject in particular. This is a humorous topic we can all get our heads around: so this is comment 21 or 11 excluding responses. I think I was the fourth and last on the subject of terrorism. On this topic: serious - many countries have windows one can clean easily from the inside (even some of mine can be); flippant - why be embarrassed Frances? There are probably over 30 million of each sex in this country. If you'd said nothing the window cleaner would have gone on his way and after two streets wouldn't even have remembered which street it was in which the incident occurred.

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