I swear, I bathe my children. And contrary to some ideas of our living arrangements, it's not a mud hut with dirt floors.
This is what it looks like to go out of station. In 'Merican language, that's to leave town (i.e. holiday, vacation, business trip).
We recently left our home for 5 days. When we left, everything was clean. The floors had just been mopped. Random chimney sweeps weren't traipsing through while we were gone. We returned to what-seemed-like-a-clean house. Yet, after just a few minutes of play my children's feet had turned black.
Here's the deal. We live in a dirty city. We leave our windows open while we are gone (so as not to return to a sauna). Dust comes in, settles and our feet pick it up. It's gross (let's not think about what we are breathing in shall we?). It's constant. And I feel like we constantly battle it.
In America, dusting was like a hobby I did when I wanted to reorganize the pictures and knick-knacks. Mop the floor....weekly-ish. Remove grime from the light switches and ceiling fans...when my mother-in-law visited. Scrub the inside of my sock drawer...never! But here...seriously, no place is safe from this dust. It's the most intrusive force to this house since Disney princess ballads.
My floors are marbled white. Once I scrubbed a stain with a new cleanser. After a few minutes, the stain was gone. I stood up, pleased...until I realized I now had a gleaming white spot in a mother-of-pearl house! I thought about putting a potted plant of that hideously clean spot...but alas, it was in the middle of our living room. I scrubbed the entire floor (this took several days and 3 bottles of cleanser). I was so proud of my shiny floor.
A week later grime had reclaimed it's off-white victory!
Yeah, so I might go get a pedicure next week. I know it won't even last as long as that shiny-clean-floor week. But it will be a whole lot more enjoyable to accomplish. Victory!