While in the little curtained cubicle getting back into my pants, I put my weight against the left wall behind the curtain. It didn’t take me long to realize it wasn’t a full wall and suddenly I was plummeting backwards into the curtain and straight into the next dressing room. With only a couple seconds to assess my situation, I looked for something to grab, to break my fall and spare the humiliation of an announced visit with the person I could hear in the adjoining dressing room. I wondered if the curtain would hold my weight, but decided against it. I knew my ‘neighbour’ wouldn't appreciate having the curtained walls suddenly come crashing down while in the state of undress. I had no choice but to let myself fall directly back. My sore hip caught a long sturdy metal clothes hook before I crashed embarrassingly onto the floor, my pants around my ankles, looking straight up at the ceiling in the next cubicle. With my eyes closed, I was expecting a sarcastic, “Pervert!” but there was only silence. I opened my eyes and from my vantage point, I caught the sight of black loafers exiting the dressing room. A nearby door swished shut, and with great relief in the spread of two dressing rooms, I assessed the damage: back smarting, elbow feeling broken, rising red welt on left hip, pride completely shattered. With my pants still around my ankles, hurting badly all over, I had to make a decision. Lay there and yell for assistance or slowly get back up. I opted for choice number two.
“I took a little tumble in the dressing room.”
The nurse in her sprang into action. “Maybe you should go back for another X-ray. I can call down there. Can’t have you leaving in worse shape than when you arrived.”
Lord love a duck! I insisted not! She stared at me with caring sister and compassionate eyes as we chatted for a few minutes, then I limped out.
When I returned home, Fred was resting on the sofa watching the seven-minute-farm segment during the tail end of the CTV noon hour news. The grain prices held his attention before he asked, “Well, how’d it go?”
I showed him the angry purple bruise that had spread on my elbow and vivid red swelling on my bad hip. “That looks about as awful as the price of wheat!” he commented, then knowingly added, “I’m afraid to ask.”
I was already busy with the makings of a toasted fried-egg and cheese sandwich. As long as Fred had a sandwich in his hand there’d be no jousting from the ‘Peanut Gallery!’