Naomi sweepwell

PEOPLE find peace of mind through reading poetry, others by listening to music or running the marathon. Naomi Campbell, it seems, has discovered her own inner tranquillity by cleaning the floors of a garbage collection warehouse.

'I find solace in sweeping,' the supermodel said, confounding her image as someone who would rather die than hold a broom. 'I have no other responsibility. I have no phone. I have time to think. Just have, you know, peace.'

Campbell's unexpected celebration of cleaning is made in a diary she kept during her week-long community service in New York in March.

She was made to work at Pier 36, a city sanitation facility housing garbage trucks, as punishment for throwing a mobile phone at her housemaid, Ana Scolavino. The experience appears to have done her a world of good, exposing her to how the other half lives.

'Two of the people in the room have never been on a plane,' she writes, clearly startled by the revelation. 'They ask me what it's like, and I'm embarrassed to tell them I was on seven planes the week before alone.'

She also travels after work uptown on the New York subway, admitting that the last time she travelled in such public fashion 'you had to use tokens'.

The diary, published later this week by W magazine and previewed by the New York Post, has Campbell in typically excoriating form towards the throngs of media that greeted her each morning.

Come Friday, the last day of her punishment, she feels that all that sweeping has served a purpose. 'I've paid my debt to society. I'm not proud of what I did, but it's something I definitely learned from.'

More news from City Times