Let there be light

When we built our extension and rejigged the layout of our house a decade ago, we didn’t pay enough attention to the natural light coming in. We had young children both under five then and just wanted to get the job done with minimal expense and fuss.

A decade on, we live with the consequences of some of those short sighted decisions. There’s so much we would change if we could start over, with more money in the bank. But, as our lad kindly reminded us the other day, we need to save up to put them both through university.

So it is that we must make do with counter-measures. Hence my weekend project, painting inner walls brilliant white to reflect more light into the home. My beloved said, “Wait til spring.” But I know my seasonal blues will soon hit with a vengeance as the shorter days draw in.

Normal men my age — mid-life crisis in full swing — are found wrapping their sporty coupés in colour-shifting matt vinyl. My interventions are more practical. Soon I will be found wrapping our dark secondhand furniture in lighter hues. Anything to bring more light inside.

After that, I will probably have to give more thought to room lighing. Eventually, we will have to reconsider our accumulated clutter: too much furniture, passed onto us by well-meaning friends and relatives over the past decade. Somehow I will have to convince my beloved that less is more.

Light and space have such a major impact on mental wellbeing. Let’s see if these minor tweaks will make a difference. I will report back in the spring.

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