The backyard had 7 inches of snow, I didn't feel like the walk to the compost bin, so it sat. The seven inches of snow morphed into 4 inches of slush and now it is 2 inches of slush and ice with bare patches in between. It has been my silent justification to myself for why I didn't have to haul the compost and since the compost wasn't emptied I couldn't spelunk into the back of the fridge to find the old leftovers that I knew were there, but I kept denying that they really needed to go, just yet.
Those with weak stomachs or the New Englanders laughing at my mere seven inches of snow can stop reading now.
Then yesterday my husband, a sweet man with little olfactory sensation (there needs to be a word for someone immune to the stink of mold and rot, if you know one let me know), said, "Ooooooooh, there's something in there that has really got to go."
Then this morning my daughter, who wisely will never admit to seeing dirt or mess for fear of being assigned clean up duty, said, "Ooooooh, why do I smell compost?" while sitting at the breakfast table. It had to be bad.
I knew what it was. I was just denying its existence. I was hoping I could pretend and it would go away. It was a casserole that I had made with leftover chicken that did not win rave reviews, so the leftovers never went into lunches. It lurked on the bottom shelf behind plastic containers with a few noodles, a quarter cup of baked beans and all the cat food that Aggie won't eat cold. It kept being pushed a little farther back, until I almost forgot that it was there. Luckily, it is really cold there and some stuff freezes, so it wasn't as putrid as it could have been.
I have yet to figure out how to delegate the task of cleaning the fridge. I think I'd have to hire someone and pay them a lot of money and put a bit in a 401K for someone to take over the task.
Today was deemed to be the day by the olfactory challenged family.
I made a cup of tea.
What else does one do at a time like that?
I screwed up the courage to face the dateless whole wheat spaghetti, dried out take out rice, fuzzy not quite a single serving of tomato sauce, and the mysterious blue furry Rubbermaid container. I pushed passed the Friskies can with the plastic cover that says "kitty cat food" -which Aggie refutes, on top. I found the Pyrex bowl with its matching cover waiting for me. Its beige and pink tones told me more than I wanted to know. I doubled some garbage bags, turned on the ventilation fan, turned up the music in hope that sensory overload would cancel out the odor. As I reached for it, I stopped breathing through my nose. I placed it on the counter, checked my preparations, turned the Depeche Mode up little louder, and freed the demon inside. In a smooth move I lifted the cover with one hand and simultaneously tipped it into the waiting bags. It all went as planned. Aggie came in to check out what ever it was that was dead in the kitchen and the dog was right behind him. The stench must have been overpowering, because both the cat and Stella were within two feet of each other and oblivious to each other.
I quickly tied my knots and hauled the bag outside. There it will freeze hard and I will drop it off at the landfill later this week. I'll make sure it is the coldest day possible. I just hope it doesn't reanimate, like the leftovers in Calvin and Hobbes, and come get me.