I had one of those weird moments today when panic makes time stand still and thoughts that might well be the basis of an entire conversation in the normal course of events are flashed across the brain and collated at the speed of light.
I had just finished getting washed, dressed and made up, had just popped the mascara back into its tube, zipped up my little make-up bag and put the mirror back in its place by the washhand basin and was thinking to myself how lucky the timing would be because the kittens had fallen peacefully asleep. That meant that I wouldn’t have to speedily slime my way through a crack in the front door to prevent feline escapees.
Then I heard it – an ominous thudding and the unhealthy sound of porcelain chinking coming from the bathroom. I went in to see kitten William, up on the window ledge, chasing a fly and doing a quick succession of Fosbury Flops onto my little white porcelain dish … which sits beside my brand spanking new glass optic jar from Laura Ashley (of which I am inordinately fond at the moment)… which sits beside a little blue Wedgewood trinket box. I went into an instant stressy. The fly kept buzzing and batting itself frantically against the windows, meaning that even though I had caught William and was extracting his struggling form from the bathroom, in came brother Harry to see what all the fuss was about. Of course he quickly figured it out and started doing his own back flips amongst my precious possessions.
Then my brain went into that odd panic slow-mo, where neurons are clearly sparking at supersonic speed and entire lengthy thoughts are processed in nanoseconds. Inside my brain it went something like this:.
Question: Do I open the window to let the fly out? Answer: Don’t be silly, the cats will be out and away in an instant.
Question: Do I try to catch the fly? Answer: Now that’s even more silly. With what? Do you think you’re the Shaolin monk out of the Kung Fu series? Catch it between your thumb and forefinger perhaps? … er, I don’t think so!
Question: Can I catch both cats at the same time and get them out of here? Answer: Almost as silly as option two.
Question: Do I move my stuff to a place of safety? Answer: At last! Some sense! But you can’t carry everything at once so what do you save first, brainbox?
I did get my stuff out, but only whilst blubbering like a two-year-old girl – maybe as a result of blind panic, I don’t know. (I’ve given up trying to understand why and how I cry so often and so easily, I just do. Always have). By the time bits had been moved, the fly had dematerialised (or was eaten) and I looked in the mirror. I had panda eyes — my mascara had smudged and started to streak down my cheeks. I had to be out early this morning so I quickly patched up the damage and as I slipped out of the front door minutes later I noticed the cats were cuddling and dozing on the bed as though nothing at all had just happened. Little [~ bleeeeeep ~]!