Yes, the first (allegedly) malodorous incident turned out to be a whiff in a pan - well, no whiff at all really. My good friend Kate, known as 'Crafty Kate' in our crafting circles, is a home interiors magpie who has an eye for - and is passionate about scooping up - a bargain. Her house is already filled to the gunnels with an eclectic and quirky assortment of furniture and artefacts she bought for a song, so to satisfy her ongoing acquisitive urge she has now taken to searching for items for her friends - often unprompted, but very often things we never knew we really needed till she drew our attention to them. And thus it was with a little two seater sofa she spied up in The Potteries for £20. Sort of mid-century, but with rolled arms that nodded more towards retro styling. Neutral beige woollen covers that had the odd grubby mark whichever way you turned the cushions. But hey, £20! First of all I had to clear some space in the bay window of the front room, which necessitated the re-homing of a very tall elephant's foot / pony tail palm with my neighbour two doors down. She was absolutely delighted, and has put the plant in the exact same spot in her bay window. With that I donated a lightly used tub of Oreo ice cream, of which she said her two little boys would make light work.
And so it was that Kate turned up yesterday with the sofa, which she had collected in her work van. I did pay her for the cost of borrowing the van and something for her time, in case anyone thinks I am a complete freeloader. 'Free loader' being the operative term! The first thing she asked was whether I had any Febreze or other deodorising fabric spray, as she reckoned the sofa smelt 'a bit 'erbal'. This being code for...well, you can guess what for. I said I didn't mind a bit of 'erbal actually, given that you only have to walk down my street to - perforce - end up 'passively spliffing' in the ambient air at several points. Anyway, I gave the sofa a good old sniff, but frankly I didn't detect any smell really, other than a sort of 'old wool' one, which was not at all objectionable.
|A displaced pink chair, formerly in the window!|
So we moved the sofa to one or two places in the room, and after Kate - and another friend who had taken custody of a throw K had also hunter gathered on the same trip! - had gone, I spent the next hour and a half rearranging all the furniture some more. And then some more again. I have put a throw over the little sofa for now, partly because of the grubby marks, which I may address at a later date, but also because the simple addition of another fabric made it fit nicely into my scheme.
|Hall of shame...|
So that was that...and then the same morning I smelt the most potent pong at a specific point half way down the hall. It made me catch my breath, it was so unpleasant, in a rotten egg / sewage kind of a way. I puzzled over this long and hard, looked under the hall furniture for a possible present from Truffle, rang my friend Gillie to ask her about the likelihood of a localised gas leak, and generally fretted a lot, thinking my house was unsafe, smelly, or both. And then something made me pull out a trainer (as in the shoe, not a fitness professional house guest who forgot to check out ;) ) from under a chair, and I suddenly spied a dark furry mass nestling inside. Nestling, and oozing...Having tossed the mouse, I examined the dark patches its partly decomposing body had left behind. Too extensive to disinfect/sterilise and wash in the machine, though I did have a go. Before tossing the wet trainers as well. Luckily, a cursory rummage in my T K Maxx receipts - yes, I really do have a separate folder for these! - revealed that I had only paid £12 for them in the first place. But still, it was a stomach-churning episode, second only to the discovery of an even more decaying mouse corpse in the loo once.
And on that unsavoury note, I will dream of more Airbnb guests coming, bringing fragrant bodycare products with them to fumigate the house...;)