Return to A Deliberate Year
I was up bright and early this Sunday morning, loading up the leftover firewood, packing away the uneasy chair, pissing off the hummingbirds by pouring out their breakfast, etc. Getting ready to leave. Almost finished.
The guy in the next site was doing the same thing. He saw me and hollered over to say I could have his firewood too, since he was going home to Albuquerque and he didn't have any use for it.
That's how it always starts. An offer too good to be true. I get them all the time.
So there I was, loading up a pile of wood onto my left arm while he was bent over under the overhang of his fifth wheel, putting something away.
"AUGH! UNH! OH! OW! DAMMID!" I dropped the wood and turned around, and here he comes holding his hand under his nose, blood dripping all down his shirt.
"Man! What happened to you?"
"Mmmf!" He was staggering around in circles.
"Sit down here. I'll get your wife."
"What? You're bleeding!"
"Juh gif me a mimit..."
He did seem to be recovering, and I saw the blood was mostly all over his hand. "Geeze! What happened?"
"You wudn't beleef id."
He sighed, obviously collecting himself.
"Jud doan tell ma wife, ogay?"
"Ogay. I mean okay. What happened?"
"I puhld ob da combardmint door, see? An I balanthed id on mah head. Oh Jethus. I cain belief dis."
"Okay. Take it easy. You balanced it on your head?"
"Yeth. An den ah backed off and id fell down and hid my tid."
"Mah TID! Mah lef tid, if you haf to know!" He rubbed his chest tenderly with his clean hand. "Damiddamiddamid....."
"You hit your left tit?"
"Yeth! It HURDTH!"
I waited a beat, but I couldn't help myself.
"How did that make your nose bleed?"
"Cauth ah pushed tha door off mah tid."
"You did what?"
"Ah pushed up. Ah hid tha door up an id hid me in da nodse. Ith not funny. Jethuth, doan tell ma wife."
"Uh, okay. You all right now?"
"You sound funny. Can you breathe okay?"
"Yeth, yeth. Ah bid ma tongue. Ahm okay, ahm okay."
I am proud to say that I made it back to the trailer before the tears came. I forgot all about the firewood, and I didn't want to go back over there. I didn't know the guy that well. I was afraid he might... who knows? The last thing I saw as I drove away was him heading down to the river. I guess to clean up.
Call me overcautious. But I just didn't want to be there when he discovered the fine line between washing and drowning.
O yeah. The required warning label. No, it's not about the 'balancing the door on your head and mashing your tit" trick. Nor "busting your own nose and biting your tongue, all in a split second" bit. I doubt there are many of you out there coordinated enough to accomplish all that anyway.
Certainly I'm not. And I'm not going to go on about keeping dangerous things like compartment doors out of the hands of children.
Here's the warning: If by any chance one among you is able to injure yourself in a similar manner, just keep your mouth shut. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT TELL ANYONE ABOUT IT.
'Cause if you do, sure as hell some asshole is going to put it on the internet.
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