Stockton fixes all kinds of stuff around our house. Basement stairs, appliance installation, repairing plaster walls. There seems to be no limit to his ability to learn new skills in the This Old House of our lives. Lately, he’s been working on a cement project around our basement hatch doors. He needed a bucket of water, so I walked around to the spigot to fill up a bucket.
Mayberry is quiet on Sundays. Birds chirp. An occasional car passes. It’s peaceful. I was enjoying the clear afternoon when I noticed the white plastic-sleeved newspaper in our darker driveway. Once I turned off the spigot, I lifted the full bucket and meandered to the paper. I balance the newspaper in my left hand and the heavy bucket in my right hand and started to cross the unbroken green expanse of our front lawn, an easy trail to walk with low vision. I decided to toss the paper on the porch. My grip slipped and I found myself tangled, my right foot tripping up my left. Oh no.
Slow motion kicked in. I gave up trying to fling the paper and hollered out an involuntary, “Jeee-zzzuuusss.” as I continued forward, bucket swaying in the air. My right knee bent in genuflection in the muscle memory of Mass and I collapsed onto the grass, facedown. Silence.
I inhaled the earthy scent of the lawn and collected myself, my red t-shirt now soaked on the right side up my neck, into my hair. No cars passed. No neighbors hollered out. The only noise I heard was my laughter.
It took me a few moments to straighten up, drop the paper onto the porch, and go back to refill my bucket. I giggled uncontrollably as I listened to the gush of the water. When I finally reached Stockton, he was busy working. He turned to me and raised an eyebrow. “What happened?”
Through chuckles, I recounted my mishap. My body felt fine. No trauma, only a small reddened area below my right knee to indicate my downward journey. Graceful, that’s me. Stockton shrugged his shoulders.
I’m still laughing as I type this. I may not be large, containing multitudes, but I am comical, containing altitudes. Have you put on a silly solo performance lately? Tell me about it.