'Simple Pleasures (down me shed)' was going to be the title of this blog post. My shed finally got a tidy up and I was happier than a pig in shit. Pottering is the perfect antidote to hours glued to the computer screen. A month ago I fashioned a new wooden handle to fit an old axe head, but deadlines threatened and it didn't get put to work.
There are five small open fireplaces with cast iron surrounds; including the kitchen and the bathroom in my terraced Victorian house. Coal was the fuel back in the day, but its stinky, hard to ignite and to me misses the cosines of naked flame, so mine run on scavenged wood. (I did try MDF off-cuts but it's evil).
So to my shed to chop up some kindling, 15 minutes with a whetstone to sharpen my new-olde toy. Oh what joy! Gently wiping my thumb sideways across the edge of the blade - why is that rasping sensation of skin on razor sharp plain steel so primevally marvelous? (Some background info: Many years ago, on day 1 working as a sous-chef in London; terrified by the standard issue Crocodile Dundee blade, an exceptionally crusty baguette that I was directed to chop up for garlic bread, took me by surprise and drew blood, but after 6 months my tomatoe slicing speed was pretty impressive). So to the task in hand...
I stand frozen staring at my left index finger, the tip cut clean off at 45∘. And blood oozing.
Thankfully adrenalin kicked in immediately and there was virtually no pain. My boy had a graze last week and the first-aid kit was still on the kitchen table. My head must have been literally spinning as I stood staring blankly at various bandages and ointments, as even though he's only 3 he said "sit down dadda".
Today I went back to the shed to find the missing article. It wasn't as Tarantino'esque a scene as imagined. After the attack, the axeman had been cool enough to replace the weapon back in it's proper place on the shelf. In a couple of weeks I'll be able to pick my nose again - might even be able to dig a bit deeper now my finger is sharper. BP