Eco headache

When I got to work on Thursday a volunteer was already in the library, cleaning. There was going to be a big community program that evening, and she wanted the library to be cleaner than usual. (Hey, I vacuum! And there’s supposedly a custodian, but I’ve never seen him.) She had been cleaning for 3 hours by the time I got to work. That was very nice of her. She’s a wonderful human being. I almost cry when I think how kind she was to me when I first started working at this little branch a year ago. She’s involved in every aspect of her community, where she’s a political and social leader. And she was scrubbing library toilets.

But she was using Simple Green.

Simple Green is supposed to be non-toxic, biodegradable, eco-friendly, and safe to use on animals that are caught in oil spills. But if I ever get caught in an oil spill, please don’t use it on me, because the smell of it makes me sick. Also, please don’t clean my workplace with it, because it makes me sick. Unlike a lot of migraineurs, most odors don’t bother me much. But within 10 minutes of entering the building, my eyes were watering, my throat felt raw, and I was sure a headache was around the corner (it was.)

But what could I do? Complain about somebody working so hard and cleaning for free? And she was trying to be environmentally responsible. Luckily, I spend most of my time at the counter which is near the front door, and the day was warm so I propped the door open and lived through the next 8 hours, plus the two hours after that for the program. Today, Saturday, I worked at that branch again and the smell was pretty much gone, but I still have a headache.

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