When Tracey arrived home from the shops this morning I was sitting on the balcony steps with my hands firmly clutching two great wads of my hair.
“What’s wrong with you?” she wanted to know.
“I’m on a health kick,” I told her. A slight exaggeration. I’d simply decided to supplement my second coffee of the day with something healthier. Tracey raised her eyebrows, waiting for more. “If you must know, I’ve been juicing.”
“That sounds nice. What type of juice?”
Not that we had a lot of choice. We’d bought a box of oranges and mandarins this week, and last week we bought apples.
I sighed. “Orange. Apple. Carrot. Just basic.”
“Taste alright?” asked Tracey, trying to step past me up the steps.
“Wouldn’t know. Haven’t got to try one yet,” I answered. I stood up so she could pass. “Actually, I haven’t even added the apple and carrot.”
I took a bag of groceries off her and we walked to the door.
“I started with the orange and then sort of lost interest.”
“I think it’s a great idea. I’ll have one too then.”
“No you won’t,” I told her as we entered the hallway.
“Cause we’re out of oranges.”
This didn’t cut any slack with Tracey. I’d told her I’d juiced the oranges, hadn’t drunk any and still had the other two ingredients to go. The solution was simple.
“Well, we’ll add the apples and carrots and I’ll share y-”
She’d frozen in the entrance to the kitchen, her eyes wide, taking in the scene in front of her.
“You’ll share mine? Great idea,” I told her. “I’ll get you a cloth.”
The reason I’d been sitting on the steps was to calm myself down and psych myself up for the job ahead. A big job. A huge job.
You see, after I’d cut up the fruit and assembled the electric juicer, I’d started up the machine and jammed my two oranges into the shute-
-and nearly shat myself as the pulp sprayed across the bench top, ricocheted up the walls, shot into the cabinet which houses the kettle and splattered all across the floor.
I’d forgotten to attach the pulp catcher, hadn’t I.
Furthermore, in my haste to turn the machine off I bumped the cup of juice and sent it flying. The cup ended up under the oven but its juice didn’t make it that far.
I’d then stood silently, looking at the mess I’d just made, with bits of orange so far up the wall I’d need to stand on the counter to reach them and even more mess in two open drawers containing now dirty Tupperware, assorted crockery and the better part of a health drink.
At this point I’d decided I’d take a few minutes to kiss goodbye my lazy morning of reading a book and sipping freshly squeezed juice to compose myself before I began the mammoth clean up.
Which was when Tracey found me on the steps.
Tracey took her bag of groceries off me and smiled.
“I’ve decided to have a coffee instead,” she said.
Wish I had.
Bruce Devereaux hangs out at his ‘BIG FAMILY little income’ Facebook Page
’raising a family on little more than laughs’