(the misadventures of an expatriate corporate dropout)
Friday, October 30, 2009
I am regularly provided insights into how I shall surrender my mortality.
Living alone is kind that way. in bits here and there, we are given glimpses ... us solitary residents. somehow, it feels like missus earth is feeding us crumbs to prepare us ... so when we are there, dying alone, we will be somewhat more prepared.
I'm a "six feet under" fan. you other gentle viewers will know that each episode commences with a scene of a death. one of their episodes which resonated with me is that of a woman ... I'd guess early 50s, who returns home alone to her small apartment, prepares her microwave-ready dinner, sits down alone at her dining table and proceeds to choke to death ... all alone. (this too reminds me of the helpfullness of a dear friend, who emailed me instructions on self-administration of the Heimlich Maneuver ... and how to self-provide CPR.)
in any event, nary a week passes where I do not experience some sort of near-death miss. whether it is a stairwell slip ... that I either recover from at the last moment ... or somehow less than gracefully manage to break my fall and experience the lesser of 2 evils ... deep and long lasting bruising vs. broken bones or neck.
some of my friends must harbor worries on my behalf...although they won't come clean and actually speak the fateful words, they regularly provide tips and techniques for calamity avoidance.
when my dear friends David and Kathleen were visiting last year, they assisted with the delivery of a huge truckload of logs for my fireplace. we stacked and stacked and then had the opportunity to build a fire on a chilly morning. It was apparent that the wood was still a bit damp and unsuitable for easy burning.
David graciously purchased a log splitter tool with a long handle and very heavy, very sharp head. It is nearly too heavy for me to hoist, but of course I tried...wobbily. David also split a large amount of logs for me, creating kindling pieces to aid in getting my fires going.
When JY observed me attempting to use this tool, a panicked expression filled his brow. "Kim-bear-lay! N'utilisez pas cet outil. c'est trop dangereux. si tu as besoin de bois pour se dédoubler, demandez-moi!!! Serieusement!!!". He was convinced I would cut off a foot.
Okay. fine, I decided this time he might be right. Winter and summer passed. Fall is here and I have the need of more kindling. I thought if I bought a hatchet.... Safer, right? I mean it is a tenth of the size of the splitter. I'm a camper. I can do it.
Well. Somehow I escaped hacking off my left hand. I was using it to steady a small log as I chopped with my right hand. A few misses of the mark, but I pressed on ... and with a stroke aimed, went left and the blade landed squarely between my forefinger and thumb. Not sure how, but it only broke the skin and caused a bleed as opposed to severing my thumb. Now, a few days later, I have a large triangular bruise and much soreness.
I've reflected in the meantime on this close call. A cut next to a large vein in my hand. Alone. of a cold morning. wondering if I'd have the presence of mind to suppress the bleeding, locate the emergency number, get me to a hospital or ambulance.
now wasn't the moment. but for many years now I've suspected a like moment will arise.
I guess there's more than the lack of regular sex to bemoan when one is single. morbidly single.