Burning Down the House

This weekend I almost burnt my house down. 

I have never done that before. Just to be clear, I’ve never actually burnt a house down. I’ve not even come close. Mrs Carmichael has a very healthy respect for and enduring fear of fire and houses on fire. This childhood respectful fear (or should that be fearful respect?) that I nurture, stems from bearing witness to my neighbours of yore successfully burning their house down in front of my eight year old eyes. It was a bird’s nest in the chimney apparently. Good God that bird must have had pyromaniacal tendencies fo’ sho.

So, you have to believe that almost burning down my house is a big deal for yours truly.

This is how it happened…..

In COVID times many things, for many people are different. Perhaps I should rephrase. Most things for most people here in pandemic central are not as we know them. Nor as we want them to be. Nothing is the same; everything’s different and thus ‘things fall apart’. As centre’s go, mine for one, isn’t holding. Big time. William Butler Yeats may not have been describing an outa control virus in The Second Coming but boy did he get the mood spot on. 

But I digress…..

An element of my centre not holding is that Lyle, the cockapoo, has made his way through numerous obstacles, physical and emotional, and now appears to be sleeping on our super-king of a nighttime. 

‘How did that happen?’ you ask. 

Well, it all started when I forgot his seventh birthday last Thursday and, with literally nothing else to do #covid, I experienced an irrational amount of guilt.

Friday found me walking dog miles, cuddling constantly and feeding my furry friend lots o’ treats. One of said treats came back to bite me in the bum.

Saturday early hours found me waking to the sound of vomit. The sight of vomit way worse than the sound but at least I had, with foresight, shrouded our linen duvet cover with a dog sheet. This must, I briefly thought, be good news. 

The bad news was that, although the spring onion root (M’lud I never meant to put that in his salad) lay solid and whole on the dog sheet, the yellow bile that pooled around it had done its worst and soaked through, not only the dog sheet and the duvet cover but the duck down duvet itself. Such woe but at least, I guess, it gave a purpose to my day #covid.

I stripped the dog sheet and spoilt duvet cover and set the patch of sick on the duvet in a bowl of Vanish on the bedroom floor. I put the linen on a hot wash and took Lyle out for his first walk. Obviously feeling much better on an empty stomach, he was keen to go.

Duvet cover drying, dog sheet waiting its turn my single task for the remainder of the day and evening, was to get the puke, puke stain and puke smell out of the duvet, dry it and remake our bed. Even with nothing, and I mean nothing, else to do #covid, I was aware that time was not my friend. Patch drying a supering duck down duvet is another thing I have never done before. 

Obviously the duvet wouldn’t fit in my dryer. There was no washing line to hang it on nor sunshine to warm it through. Mid-winter COVID is the worst variation of high summer COVID. It sucks in a way sunny summer COVID can but fantasise about.


I rigged up a, seen better days, drying rack in front of the fire and draped our bedding over it. Positioning the damp patch toward the flames, I sent Mr Carmichael (who was making a business call from his car in the driveway #covid) a photo of my Professor Brainstorm brilliance and sat down to watch episode 16, series 8 of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills with Lyle. 

I got a text from the Mercedes asking if the duvet wasn’t a bit close to the naked flame and thus a fire hazard but I didn’t have time to read it because our duvet was on fire and the living room wall was queuing for ignition approval.

The room smelt of burnt fowl, the duvet looked like a Baked Alaska and the vomit stain was still soaking and somewhat yellow.

I text Mr Carmichael to say the fire was out. He thought I was joking until he walked in the front door and was greeted by the stench of singed swan and the sight of Lyle making himself comfortable on a floor-based Baked Alaska in the front room.

Today I plan to wash my hair and feed my dog only kibble. Let’s see how that goes…..

8 thoughts on “Burning Down the House

  1. Omg! Your descriptions are amazing. I love the floor baked alaska and the wall waiting for ignition approval! You’ve made me laugh today which is no mean feat #home learning #covid. So big question. Is Lyle still allowed on the bed?!

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