I knew all this yakking about my arse would come back to bite me, well, in the arse. It was a morning like any other at the housette except for one small detail. Slippers. I always wear these tatty black Fit Flop slippers because my feet are perpetually cold. Now that winter is setting in my feet are like two giant blocks of ice so I wear thick wool socks as well. Anyway, for whatever reason, I descended the wooden stairs sans slippers and about halfway down wool on slippery wood and gravity took the upper hand.

Before I knew what was happening I was sailing through the air. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before but I’m a tall woman and it’s a long way down from anywhere I happen to be standing. Even with that kind of time lag I didn’t manage to make one compensatory movement. The middle of my bony back took the first hit followed by my much talked about behind. Then I just kept on going, banging and bouncing off every single tread. I’m expecting a call from the French Olympic Luge Team any minute.

Now I don’t know what a giraffe falling down the stairs sounds like in your house but in mine it’s loud enough to be heard by a man in a shower. Neil heard the cacophony of crashes and called out to the heap of bones at the bottom of the stairs, “Are you all right?”  I heard him but I was too startled and injured to answer. Next thing he was buck naked, dripping wet and hovering above me. In my haze all I could see was a sea of pink skin and red hair and I wondered why it was raining in the house. Who wouldn’t pay for video footage of that mess?

Finally the naked man got me to my feet and we assessed the damage. We decided that he could trim a little about the waist but otherwise he was in good shape. Then we had a look at me. Welts and scrapes and swellings that have now turned into bruises covering both arms and a hideously purple/black/green bottom. Add in a square in the middle of my spine that is too sore to touch and the disaster is complete. That last one will need an X-ray but the rest are slowly on the mend. Overall, apart from looking like Courtney Love after a long weekend in Bangkok, not too bad.

But this wasn’t a total fall from grace. As I lay dazed at the bottom of the stairs, after I’d determined that my head was still attached to my body, I was puzzled to see that my right hand was locked in a tight fist. If only I had put that hand out as I was going down I might’ve saved myself a lot of grief. But I guess when things happen that fast we can only hope that our instincts pay off. Mine sure did because in that fist was my Kindle with 130 books stored inside. Not a mark on it.