The last time my front verandah was painted was about five years ago by two people who didn’t have a clue what they were doing — namely, me and the man I used to be married to. When the local College Pro girl dropped by to give me an estimate, she actually couldn’t contain her laughter as she examined just how brutal the previous paint job had been — wrong kind of paint, sloppy painting, smears on the brick and on the glass, etc etc. She’s a lovely German girl and to her, this kind of paint job was criminal in addition to hilarious.

But that’s neither here nor there. She asked me to pick my colours. I decided to pick a dark midnight blue with a creamy yellow accent colour. Daringly IKEA, I know, but I thought I’d try something different since sage green has invaded my neighbourhood and there is a beech tree that drops stuff on the porch and I needed a dark colour to cover up the mess it sometimes leaves.

So this was the blue I thought I was getting (even a bit darker, actually):

And the colour I came home to yesterday, blaring out like a Swedish orgy for as far as the eye could see and leaving pained looks on the faces of my lovely neighbours:

I almost wept.

I phoned the lovely German girl, praying it was simply the primer. No, she replied, that’s the colour. She apologized, saying she should have warned me that blues often come out much brighter than they appear on paint chips. I begged her to repaint it, and she kindly assured me she would.

And guess who was up at the crack of dawn this morning, racing to the nearest paint store to get a gallon of — wait for it — safe and reliable sage green. Me!

Let this be a lesson to the blue-lovers among us. Firstly, don’t pair any blue with a pale yellow unless you do indeed want to be mistaken for the Swedish embassy for a few years — it might seem like a good idea on the paint chips, but it just doesn’t work. Secondly, go for blues several shades darker than the shade on the paint chip. You will thank me for this. I aim to be service-y.