Keep walking and pretend it didn’t happen!

Yesterday my Explorer Friend and I decided to take full advantage of the (very rare) bank holiday sunshine and make another attempt at the Greenway walk we messed up recently by getting completely lost. As we wandered along, we saw an old man coming in the opposite direction. As we moved over to let him past on the path, he stepped off the path to make way for us and totally tripped.

Not all the way over, fortunately, because I don’t think I could’ve coped if he’d fallen and I’d’ve had to keep a straight face while trying to help him up again! As it was, my friend and I suddenly sped up and stopped talking for a moment, chewing our lips and trying not to giggle while the poor man was still in earshot.

Once round a bend in the path, we gleefully caught each other’s eyes and exclaimed “He TOTALLY tripped!” and “I’m glad we managed not to laugh out loud.” Poor man. He got more courtesy than my neighbour did yesterday…

Husby and I had arrived home from doing the shopping and discovered that the toilet was draining very slowly. He noticed first and then I double checked (blocked toilets being one of my Big Childhood Fears*) and sure enough, it was blocked. So instead of completely freaking out, I did the sensible thing.

Me to Husby: Did you flush anything huge down it?

Husby: NO. Did you?


Rightio, so it’s not a localised problem then, presumably, which means everyone in our side of the block should be affected (I think we have a communal down-pipe). Down I trot to the flat below…

Me: Hi, sorry to disturb you like this – random question – are you having any problems when your toilet flushes?

Neighbour: *confused* No, no…let me check *goes to flush toilet while I make small talk with his octogenarian mother* No, no problems there.

Me: Okay, thank you – sorry to have disturbed you…I’ll see whether the people on the top floor are having any problems.

Up to the top I go.

Me: Hello, sorry to disturb you – bit of an odd question for you – is your toilet blocked, only ours is having difficulty draining.

Neighbour: No, none at all. I’ll knock on your door if we do, though.

Me: Okay, thanks, sorry to trouble you.

Back down to Husby

Me: Dammit! No-one else seems to be having any problems at all!

Husby: Well, I guess I did give it some…er…heavy use earlier today, but it seemed to flush away fine.

Me: WHAT! You mean it was you all along?

Husby: Possibly, but I’ve flushed it a few more times and it filled up then all of a sudden gave a massive gurgle, all went down and now it’s back to normal.

Me: Oh for crying out loud

*doorbell rings* – it’s my downstairs Neighbour

Me: Hello?

Neighbour: I was thinking about your toilet – you haven’t lost a sock recently, have you?

Me: *totally confused* No, a sock? I don’t think so?

Neighbour: Only I was thinking, your toilet’s connected to a communal down-pipe and I suppose a sock could have gotten stuck in there.

Me: *trying valiantly and failing utterly to keep a massive grin from my face and laughter from my voice as the upstairs neighbour walks past on the stairs, hearing the whole exchange and looking askance at me* No, I really don’t think I’ve lost any socks, but it was very sweet of you to think of it and come up to tell me, but no, none of my socks are down the toilet. Thank you though.

Oh crap!

*My childhood toilet trauma came one summer when I was probably around 7. We went on holiday to the Isle of Wight and stayed in a self-catering cottage. Sadly, it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be as the plumbing was shot. If you emptied a sink, drained the bath or flushed the toilet, the bowl of the toilet would fill up to near overflowing. I’d never seen this before as a child, and it terrified me, because you could be sitting quite happily on the loo when someone in another part of the house would do something involving draining the water and all of a sudden, the water in the bottom of the john would start rising inexorably towards your trembling, naked bottom! 

Shortly after that I went on a school trip to Kew Gardens, where they had terribly fancy public toilets which flushed themselves if left un-used for a certain amount of time (to avoid remnants, one supposes). Of course, I didn’t know this, and walked into a cubicle ready to pee, shut the door, and the damn thing flushed without me going near it. Of course, the magically rising water tapped straight into the fears from that horrible holiday and I scrambled to get out, but the lock was stuck. By the time I clawed my way out, I was well and truly traumatised, didn’t pee for the rest of the day, and it took me several years to feel comfortable using public toilets again. My poor mother spent probably hours (in total) over the next few years, with her foot jammed under the door of whichever cubicle I was using, as there was no WAY I was locking myself in.

This is my fear, right here – it’s COMING FOR ME!

I’m aware that I’ve once again committed myself to my Things of Thankful (I was on ten of them this time, wasn’t I?) and again I’ve let it slide. By my reckoning (and taking into account a day I completely missed because I was too busy talking about bubble machines) I should be up to seven.

Ten Things of Thankful #7

1. Today my very best friend in the whole world visited with her two lovely children, and my Goddaughter came to play too (she and my friend’s eldest are sweet little long-distance buddies) and her Mum and baby brother also came over. It was a glorious houseful and fun was had by all.

2. Husby and I discovered a problem in our kitchen recently – what looked like mold mites – tiny, white specks of crawling, which left behind brown fluff-like eggs, and colonised all the washing up on our draining board, to the point that most things had to be done again. To our irritation, multiple thorough cleans of the area didn’t seem to do much, until this morning I looked UP and discovered they were falling onto the draining board from the cupboard above, which was HEAVING with them. Ick. With much shuddering and instantly high stress levels, we managed to clear the cupboard, locate the source of the problem and Throw It Away, and nuke the entire area with Dettol (which, if it kills 99% of germs should have little trouble with mold mites).

3. My bezzie friend who arrived just as I was climbing a chair to see the state of the cupboard, who told me resoundingly off when I got cross at How Husby Was Doing It (wrongly, so far as I could see) and who made sensible suggestions I hadn’t thought of, like “Why don’t you just put everything in the dishwasher?”

4. Our wonderful Pet Handy Man (not really – he’s my Wonder Aunty’s Pet Handy Man – he does all the odd jobs and fixings and creatings for our family and has done for years – he’s a star) who came to measure up for MY NEW BOOKCASES.

Sorry, OUR new bookcases. But mine really…

5. It rained all day. Usually I’d hate this, but today I was indoors and the garden needed watering. God took care of that for me, then!

6. There were sausages for dinner last night and chilli bean wraps for dinner tonight. I’m loving this diet!

7. Tonight my Explorer Friend and I met up again to work out attempt to copy the actions to Just Dance 4 (for Wii). I did surprisingly well on a Blues Brothers song and felt *very* proud of myself.

8. Unless my scales are broken, I lost/gained 5lb yesterday and am now not sure what to think, but regardless, there is less of me to go round.

9. A friend from the ‘Why NO kids?’ group on Facebook asked me to ghost-write her story for her, as she didn’t feel confident in a) putting the whole thing together from the various places she has it and b) her writing style (which is actually fine…) so it’s been a nice little project for me (I’m not nearly done yet) and we’ve had fun chatting it through as she’s explained some of the terminology to me.

10. Husby’s about to make me a cup of tea and I’m really looking forward to it. I’m also looking forward to a sneaky little plan I am hatching for the weekend – if you have a blog and I’m a regular reader (where I read regularly, I comment, so you’ll know) WATCH OUT!

8 thoughts on “Keep walking and pretend it didn’t happen!

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  4. Heh well as long as I'm not the only one with freaky toilet-phobia!! Yours sounds pretty traumatic.

    Pictures? Nooooooo scratch that – I didn't dance to any Blues Brothers or get any high scores on the game. Just. Didn't. Happen 😉


  5. Well, you certainly know how to make yourself known with the new neighbors. Haha! And the sock part is just added hilarity.
    It's very funny that you explained your toilet fear. I have a similar one. I vividly remember sitting on the toilet as a little girl, and my mom and grandma storming in with hangers. It seems the person before me had clogged the toilet, and I didn't know. They wanted to fix it before I went and made it worse. I had a fear of clogging toilets for many, many years.
    Really, this whole topic probably falls into the category of TMI.
    I guess I'm glad for you that you didn't get lost.
    And, as someone likes to say, without photographic evidence, it didn't happen. I do believe a video of you dancing to Blues Brothers is in order, my dear. 🙂


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