I have run out of shampoo. I usually steal shampoo from my Mother’s house when I go over to visit, but the last time I was there my hands were full of stolen wine, and I forgot. So, this week, I have been experimenting. Not with different types of shampoo, but with the varying levels of generosity and attention to detail of my two housemates.
The shower room (which, handily, is separate from the toilet) is a very useful source of information. In fact, I might go so far as to say it has yielded more personal data to me than the time when my housemates were out, and I went for a quick rifle through their stuff. Let me quickly describe our shower room. It has a mirror which opens to reveal 3 shelves (of which we each own one). We have put in a freestanding set of drawers (there are 4, but the bottom one holds bathroom cleaning products), and along the base of the bath (at the opposite end to the shower-head), are three further baskets.
‘It is quite impossible that we need this much storage in the shower’, I told my little sister when we bought it. ‘No-one can possibly possess so many toothbrushes.’
I was right about that, although we currently have 5 toothbrushes in the toothbrush mug (former houseguests- please feel free to re-claim your possessions. Though not those awesome theatre binoculars, I use those to make myself feel like a giant when I read articles).
What I had failed to consider was the amount of cleaning product my housemate and little sister would think it was appropriate to possess.
The bath baskets are open, so every single time anyone accidentally wanders into the shower room looking for the loo, they can instantly see the profligate and excessive spending habits of my housemates.
My own basket, it is true, looks particularly scarce this week, its facewash and razor in the midst of an existential crisis about their role in the grand scheme of things as they lie in the black expanse on basket. But even with the reassuring presence of their shampoo friend, my basket remains a Zen-like zone of simplicity, when compared to the brilliantly coloured, stuffed baskets of my housemates.
This week, I have been forced to examine their contents more closely than usual (obviously I don’t want to start washing my hair with exfoliating wash or leave-in colour-protect conditioner), and I have come to the conclusion that my housemates are mugs. Which is brilliant, because it means I can happily continue to ‘borrow’ shampoo from them both, in the full knowledge that they are just dying to return to Boots and give more of their money to Herbal Essences.