Side story - last week, there was a deer in the front yard, and I grabbed the camera to snap a couple of pictures. We see deer all the time, but we never get tired of them--though we do get a bit exasperated when they eat the garden or important trees! Anyway, the deer saw me coming and ducked down into the trail. Mom and I decided to hurry up and see if the deer was still on the trail, because we thought it would be a neat picture. She went around the outside of the woodlot and I went along the trail. The deer was nowhere to be found! Not on the longer trail or the little connecting trail, not running across the field, not anywhere I could see hiding in the underbrush... Then apparently, Mom went around the opposite direction from how I was going, and suddenly she couldn't find me either. She thought I'd vanished!
Me, I'm just cranky that apparently our trail has a door into Narnia, and I go on that trail all the time, but I've never made it to Narnia. *grumps*
Anyway, Friday I was apparently feeling extra klutzy. Earlier this week, while mowing, I drove an autumn olive brancy into my knee and scratched it all up, then later was attacked by a tulip tree that didn't think I had enough scratches on that knee. Then while we were working on the trail, we hitched a wagon to the mower (not a little red wagon, but a proper hitchy-type wagon). While trimming tree branches and such, I took a step back, hit my calf hard on the hitch, and fell over backwards, scraping my elbow on the way down. I was terrified I was falling into poison ivy, but fortunately the spot where I landed was clear.
As I was getting up, Mom said, "Be careful of the muffler! Don't burn yourself!"
Clever as I am, I replied, "In all the years I've been mowing this yard, I've never once burned myself on that muffler."
Famous. Last. Words.
Two wagon-loads later, we were almost finished with the trail and ready to move out into the open areas to do the sides of the woodlot. That adds just a little more tragedy to the story, because it was only the close quarters along the trail that caused my downfall. I was trying to get between the equipment and a rather large hickory tree. Squeezed between them, paused to look at something, and a couple seconds later let out an ear-splitting shriek as I realized that my leg was melting off.
Yes, I had pressed my calf (the same one I bruised earlier) against the muffler. I looked down and had a five-and-a-half inch streak of bright red running up my calf. We didn't have water, of course--we were drinking Gatoride-like stuff, and I thought the sodium and such would hurt if I poured it on the skin. So I sprinted to the house and stuck my leg in the sink. Which, let me tell you, is an incredibly awkward pose, even though the vanity is pretty big.
I've been fortunate, though, that taking 800mg of ibuprofen whenever it starts hurting (which is sometimes 6 hours and sometimes longer) has kept the pain to a minimum, except when changing the dressing. Showering was especially not fun. Anyway, tonight I'm venturing to sleep without a bandage on it. It's healing pretty well, but I'm worried about the cats, especially Eowyn, because she has a habit of curling up against my legs, especially my calves. I may end up shutting the cats out of the bedroom when I go to sleep. :(
For the curious, I have a picture of the trail and two pictures of the burn behind the cut.
The trail where it happened. And yes, that tree on the left is the Shagbark Hickory in question.
The burn a couple hours after it happened.
The burn tonight, about 60 hours after it happened.
In the meantime, I totally feel guilty for subjecting my protagonist to hot irons when he's being tortured by the bad guys. Then again, he has a blood-drinking sword that will heal him. I am not so fortunate.