Fairview Homestead | knitting is the new yoga,but actually the inspirational topic for this blog post is—toilets.
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knitting is the new yoga,but actually the inspirational topic for this blog post is—toilets.

Luella-se-truitjieKnitting is the new yoga,but actually the inspirational topic for this blog post is : an issue with toilet seats…

I doubt there is anyone out there who is not yet aware that I can now claim the title GRANDMOTHER. It is with the greatest of self-discipline that I do not insist that every guest look at photos on my mobile phone before they are allowed to enjoy breakfast. I became a champion knitter overnight – shortly after Luella’s birth I woke up with tennis elbow pain and suddenly realised: I just finished my 6th jersey for 2 month old Luella – no wonder!!

But back to toilets…

At Fairview we take the comfort of our guests to heart. So when a guest tells me that the toilet seat is uncomfortable, I am not going to ignore that complaint. I am going to use that toilet to get up to speed with the level of comfort my guests are expected to enjoy (or not) when they spend a penny. Initially I thought he was exaggerating, but then I reminded myself that I am far better padded than he seemed to have been and  he mentioned that he liked to read his newspaper on the loo, so maybe sit a few more minutes. Being a multi-tasker , I sat, mentally making to-do lists in  my mind and yes, the discomfort grew proportionately to the length of my to-do list. Not excruciatingly uncomfortable, but yes, uncomfortable.

I am forever upgrading, replacing, renewing, all the time beating myself up about how I can ensure that my guests are comfortable because let’s face it – when they stay at Fairview there are enough little idiosyncrasies typical to a house over 150 years old that they have to put up with. This particular bathroom had one of those old fashioned toilets with a high cistern that you flush by pulling a chain and about 3 months ago I decided to replace it as it was just too noisy and used too much water.  Quirkiness had to make way for practicality.

I remember when I bought the toilet I was skeptical about the square shape of the toilet seat, but because the toilet had to cover the markings made by the old toilet and had to have a section that covered the ugly drain pipes at the back that was really the best choice. Not in my wildest dreams would I have thought it necessary to work up the row of toilets on display to find the most comfortable one. Yet, that is what I will do when I buy the new toilet for the Banksia Annex in the making. In the meantime – who has a knitting pattern for a padded toilet seat cover?!

Philda Benkenstein

In 1995 we moved from Namibia to a town called George on the Garden Route in South Africa - we found a wonderful property,first registered in 1861. The place was very neglected, but I undertook to start a guest house, so that the house could at least pay for its own upkeep after the restoration, and of course - for Desmond's garden. That is the start of my life as a guest house owner and this is the story of a house and garden,lovingly restored and shared with our guests, with family and friends...

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