House Cleaning in Ghana

There was a program on TV called Extreme Home Makeover some years back (maybe its still on?), anyways, I sometimes think of that when it is time to clean our house here in Ghana.

The combination of louvre-windows or a house that is not completely sealed and dusty surroundings makes for so – much – dust – EVERYWHERE.

In wardrobes, in drawers, on books, on walls…Then we also have the left-behinds of the involuntary pets – spiderwebs, wall gecko droppings, dead flies, a leg of a cockroach etc. As Ghana is also a humid country certain things get moldy, especially clothing, bags and shoes, but also pillows, table cloths and napkins – that is if you don’t take them out every so often to dry in the sunlight. What I am trying to say is that a house in Ghana can get really, really dirty.

The difference to the TV-version of it is that I do not get to go on a luxurious vacation and only scream MOVE-THAT-BUS before my new house emerges, no, I have to be a part of the SERIOUS dust removal.

Why do I say EXTREME and SERIOUS?

Well, because of the normal cleaning routines in Ghana that seem harsh to me (although now that I am sitting in a clean house I understand the rationale). What about:

– Spreading all my shoes and purses over the lawn in our backyard
– Scrubbing all carpets with Omo
– POURING water on the floor and scrubbing (see small helper in pic)
– Emptying the bookshelf completely to wipe all the books down
– Carrying all “small furniture” i.e. tables, lamps, baskets, vases…outside for a thorough sweeping and finally my personal favorite:
– Hosing the windows/dirty mosquito netting down from the outside (yes, plenty of dirty water in the room)

Sigh, is it obvious that I hate cleaning day?