In the last few weeks I’ve suffered a number of minor accidents resulting in physical damage to myself, my clothes, surroundings and objects. I thought, ‘Oh no! Not a return to the accident-proneness that dogged me throughout my life until a few years ago.’ (I was regarded by people, who unluckily came a cropper, as dangerous to be around.) But, I refuse to go back there again and instead regard myself as going through an unlucky patch or, at the very worst, jinxed.
It all started when my right wrist swelled up, became painful and eventually refused to co-operate with any normal wrist movements. Trouble was, I had no recollection of an accident or incident that could have caused it. Realising I needed to present it at A&E in case it was broken, I racked my brain and remembered a difficult and painful episode trying to unscrew the lid off a large jar of pickled gherkins. Giving up, I resorted to stabbing it in the centre with a sharp knife. No, not my wrist (as I later repeated to the 12 year old A&E Doctor), the lid of the gherkin jar!! It turned out that my wrist was badly sprained and I left with it splinted up. Nearly 4 weeks later it is still giving me gyp and I have to remember not to use that wrist to pick up pots, pans or kettles or where I need it to perform a bit of rotation.
Notwithstanding these problems, since then I have fell victim to a series of clumsy accidents. Only last week I was having trouble with liquids – as if the rain wasn’t bad enough. Within the space of a few hours one morning there were three separate incidents resulting in me having to change my clothes and mop the floor:
- First incident: Retrieving a small set of scales from an eye-level kitchen cupboard (using my uninjured left arm), I knocked a half pint glass of warm water and lemon juice over with my elbow. Within seconds, the liquid spread across the worktop, splashed my top, dripped down the front of the lower cupboard and my bottom half and created a lake around me on the floor. Half a pint? That glass contained a gallon I swear. Cue mop and bucket and clean clothes.
- Second incident: While making a salad dressing I carelessly turned away from a bowl (for a nano-second) l in which I was whisking oil and vinegar etc. The weight of the whisk tipped the bowl of dressing over and the mixture spilled over the counter, my trousers, feet and the floor ………
- Third incident: Wanting to warm up a cold, shallow pasta bowl that was to receive hot food, I poured some hot water into it. Then promptly forgot I’d done it. So, imagine my surprise when I picked up the (empty) bowl and tipped warm water all over me, the worktop and the floor……
That was bad enough, until a few days later disaster struck in the shape of a bottle of salad dressing. It had previously been opened and used, and I was careful to check that it hadn’t exceeded it’s sell by or use by dates. Before pouring onto my freshly made salad, I gave the bottle a bit of a shake. As I started to twist the bottle top to open it, salad dressing began to fizz and pour out of the tiniest of openings, over my hand and down my arm and, as I dashed to the sink, across the floor. On reaching the sink I thought the fizzing appeared to have subsided so I gave the top another twist. Within seconds the top had exploded off with the chutzpah of a champagne cork, letting forth a deluge of salad dressing that spread across the drying dishes on the drainer, me (natch), the worktop and the floor and spread to the outer reaches of the kitchen walls, nooks and crannies. I didn’t know what to tackle first.
I thought that was the end of the kitchen disasters for now, until this morning when a glass dish slipped from my fingers and smashed into a million tiny pieces across the kitchen floor and into the adjoining sitting room. Damn! This job needed the vacuum cleaner! Rest assured, I’m now on my guard around the glassware. Fingers crossed.
Christine Ingall 19 November 2019