A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down .....
Quite often when we get together with friends we haven´t seen for a while, after a couple of glasses of wine I hear the question I have been waiting for.
“Tried anything new, has she?”
This is generally followed by a wave of laughter. I do try to keep my dignity and not rush over to defend myself, but it rarely happens. Of course, they could be referring to anything. A new hairstyle. A new recipe. Even a change in writing style. But I know they´re not.
They are laughing about what they hope will be details of my latest attempt to murder my husband. Or at least, that´s how he insists it is. All rubbish, of course.
Let me tell you my side of it….
The first “attempt” was when we were decorating. Husband is a man who believes his brush should always be well loaded with paint. Because of this, his decorating style is probably best described as “enthusiastic but messy”. On this occasion, a large lump of paint flew off his brush and landed on the bare bulb in the nearest light fitting. Which was switched on, as he was trying to reach an awkward and well hidden corner. Of course, the light bulb blew as a result. He decided he would manage without the light, and it was only later as darkness fell that he remembered and thought he would change the blown bulb. And when I say “blown” I mean blown; the glass bulb had shattered completely leaving only the metal neck of the bulb still wedged firmly in the fitting.
“Is the light switched off?” He asked.
Absent mindedly, I flicked the switch. Forgetting entirely for the second that the light was most definitely going not going to come on, I replied what it was. Husband promptly inserted his fingers into the light socket and grabbed the metal collar. There were, quite definitely, sparks. And the fuse blew. But it was not, as he always insists, a deliberate attempt to cash in on his life insurance. More of a senior moment. Honest.
The second attempt was, I assure you, yet another example of sheer absent mindedness. Out of the goodness of my heart, I said I would get an effervescent co-codamol prepared for husband, who had a raging headache. It took me ages to find the tablets, which are huge and individually wrapped in foil. There was nothing actually written on the wrapping, but there was an illustration of a tablet fizzing away merrily in a glass. So I assumed this was The One. Well, anybody would, wouldn´t they? I popped one in a glass and then added another for good measure. Left it until I thought the tablets had dissolved and handed it over. At the very last second, I noticed the liquid had a blue tinge.
“Er, just take a sip.” I said. “I don´t remember them being that odd colour. I wonder if they´re out of date?”
Husband´s idea of a sip was to knock half of the large glass back in one go. And then to cough until his eyes were streaming.
“That tastes vile! Are you sure they´re the right things?”
“Not entirely.” I admitted, and went back into the bathroom for a second look. There were no more loose tablets left, but there was an almost empty packet of denture cleaning tablets, left behind by an elderly guest. And yes, the tablets inside were identical to the ones I had given husband.
“I did tell you to just take a sip.” I pointed out. And it has to be said, they did cure his headache. And they didn´t kill him. For heaven´s sake, anybody can make a mistake!
The third – and latest – occasion was not my fault at all. I really cannot emphasise that enough. We´ve both been down with a nasty bout of ´flu (altogether now; AAAAH. Thank you). We´d emptied one bottle of cough medicine with no effect, so I asked our pharmacist to recommend something else. When we got home, I put the new bottle in the ´fridge. Sometime later, Husband decided he would try the new stuff.
“Where is it?”
“Bottom shelf in the ´fridge. You can´t miss it.”
There was rather a long silence, and then a slightly odd voice said,
“It´s not the same as the old stuff, is it?” I agreed. “This is the cough medicine, isn´t it?”
Husband was stood at my side, clutching a bottle. Only it wasn´t cough medicine. I tend to forget that he neither speaks nor reads much Spanish. I had said the bottle was on the bottom shelf, so he had grabbed the first bottle he came to that looked like medicine. It was, in fact, medicine. Unfortunately, not cough medicine.
It was actually the mixture our vet had prescribed for our dog, Oscar, when he had a bad case of the bloat. Did Husband the world of good…..