Out with the old, in with the new

closeup of our ancient, limescale-encrusted kitchen tap, with draining board to one side and grotty tiles behind

closeup of our ancient, limescale-encrusted kitchen tap, with draining board to one side and grotty tiles behind

Long-term readers may remember this crusty old tap which once graced the header of my old blog, The Domestic Soundscape, and which was one of many washing-up images I made when I was recording the sounds of washing up for a commission: The Fantastical Reality Radio Show.

The crusty old tap is now gone, along with everything else that formed our messy but well-used and deeply-loved kitchen.

traces of KNITSONIK washi tape on old kitchen cupboards

Gone are the old cupboards with accursed beading: an architectural attractant of kitchen grease and oomska. Gone, too – at least from this room – are the wondrous stained and cherished postcards that adorned these cupboards and reminded me of many friends. And is there anywhere better to share with friends than the palace of meals and convivial chatter that is the kitchen? I THINK NOT.

view of the fireplace, mantle and wall, framed by the worktops that run down either side of the room

Gone is the clock that was hung upon the wall above the fireplace, and which hasn’t worked since some time in 2015.

hated grey gas cooker above which greasy space, a white area protected for many years by an extractor fan unit, and the sawn off edge of a cupboard door cut short to meet new building regs

Gone is the cupboard under which we had to temporarily install a temporary and much-disliked grey gas cooker when our old one died. Please note the glorious hand-cut modifications that Mark made to the cupboard door above the cooker in order to meet contemporary building regulations. It was my favourite thing in the kitchen: the space above the cooker where a broken extractor fan unit once hung, and the sawn-off cupboard door, removed to clear the necessary distance between the door edge and the cooker. It was funnier when there was also half a poster on the door – also sawn through – but hopefully from this, you get the idea.

old white sockets covered in dust

I love the empty kitchen space and looking at all the objects in it that we have used so many times, in the service of COOKING and our shared love of making AMAZING MEALS.

And temporarily – look – we can see some bricks!

brick area under where the new kitchen sink is going to go

Gone, too, is COVID, so we are managing all the domestic upheaval without illness to contend with on top – thank you for your well wishes and kind notes and emails, I appreciated them a lot.

It’s been a time of great change; we are doing all our meals in the downstairs dining room, making great use of a microwave, which is a huge novelty to us both as we’ve never really used one before. All the cheering postcards and notes from friends have been moved to the temporary kitchen area, and Mark’s brewing kettle supplies us with hot water for washing up. The new kitchen will be here by mid-April and I am very excited, while also acknowledging that saying goodbye to the old one feels like the end of an era.

big yellow skip

5 thoughts on “Out with the old, in with the new

  1. How very exciting Felix, and at such a fab time of year! A new kitchen in Spring fits in so wonderfully with that feeling of awakening, doesn’t it? I can’t wait to see the “after pics 😀

  2. I love all the pictures of the “out with the old!” We had to pause a remodel because of the Omicron surge here but hope to get it started again in mid-April. Fingers crossed. I can’t wait to see what you’ve done once you’re “in with the new!” phase.

    I think of you often though I don’t communicate that well. Memories of our walk in Shetland come up on my phone regularly. Now that I’m on the other side of this pernicious depression (I hope), my goal is to be a better communicator with people I like!

    1. Isn’t it a brilliant word? Popularised here by the cult movie ‘Withnail and I’ and just such a brilliant descriptor of scuzz and scum!

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