Tuesday, December 04, 2007

11 years since I was nearly killed by a wardrobe

It's been almost eleven years since I was nearly killed by a wardrobe.

Alone...in a Victorian flat in Streatham, South London, was where I almost met my death.

The time...somewhere around 8am. It was a work day and I remember it well. Apart from my presence, the flat was empty as my flatmates had already left for work. Rose had gone off to represent her pub union clients at their latest hearing and Sadie had tootled off to check-in passengers at Eurostar, following her late night stint as a podium dancer in some London nightclub.

I had been hoovering pot-pourri which had fallen from the pomander that was hanging on the wooden clothes rail. The pink rose petals were scattered inside the wardrobe, an antique piece of furniture made of heavy oak and comprising three separate pieces, the bottom drawer, the main wardrobe and the top ornamental piece. It was none of your lightweight flatpack material. This was solid heavy wood, the true reality of which would soon be revealed.

After hoovering out the empty wardrobe, I turned to place the nozzle back into the vacuum cleaner and within a split second turned back around to face the wardrobe...

Yes, the wardrobe that was now at a 45 degree angle falling towards me.

I am so glad I turned around at that particular moment. Suddenly faced with having to find the strength to stop it in its tracks, to prevent this huge wooden box from crushing me towards the floor, was a much better position than being clobbered on the head from behind and falling into unconciousness or even death.

"Crash". The ornamental top-piece toppled over and hit the floor from a height that would definitely result in damage.

My arms began to hurt. I could hold this heavy monster no longer. My strength was gradually depleting and I was beginning to feel sick.

With one arm keeping the wardrobe from the force of gravity, I turned around and scanned the room. The hoover which was the cause of this misadventure was the only option for my salvation. I stretched out one leg, now balancing the mass of weight on the other, and gradually pulled the vacuum cleaner closer.

My body just wanted to let go of the weight, but my mind refused to give up, not wanting to relinquish myself to a would-be sartorial coffin. Instead, I managed to slowly lever the wardrobe down and down towards the floor, the angle becoming more severe with each second, until it came to rest on top of the hoover.

Now on my knees, trapped inside what had become a dark box, I could see a chunk of daylight just wide enough for my size 12 frame to crawl out. In shock, I ran to the phone and in tears I rang my fiance.

I had hoped for sympathy. Instead I got laughter and hysterics in a ROFL kind of way.

It's now been almost eleven years since I was nearly killed by a wardrobe.

Tomorrow is the 15th anniversary of when I met my fiance, who is now my husband.

If he's expecting romance, he's got another thing coming as I remind him of my hour of need and hand him his present....some string....call me paranoid but it's useful for securing any other old furniture that we might have knocking around.

At least the string looks like a nice gift...it comes in a nice tin from Smith & Wareham, beautifully enamelled and painted with the word "String".

So you might think..."Poor 21st C Dad. Romance is dead."

But the good news is...I'm not!


Lindy said...

glad you're not dead

Jo Beaufoix said...

Hi sweetie. Sorry I've been absent. And I am so glad you turned around when you did. I love this post. I wonder if he'll buy you a wardrobe? I love the string idea. :D

paul f said...

nice post

Florries Mum said...

ROFL-sounds like a Dr Who episode-attack of the wardrobes! You may think romance is dead but BB just brought me a present home-a high visibility jacket! He is SO lucky he didn't save it for Christmas for me!!

Laura McIntyre said...

Glad you made it through, think my hubby would of just laughed to

Patricia said...

Tell him he's lucky you still married him ! Happy Anniversary !!!

grumpyoldwoman said...

Aha - the attack of the killer wardrobes - how strange! In 1975 (the Dark Ages according to my kids)I lived in a flat in Churchgate Stree that had very uneven floors. I had a wardrobe very similar to the one described propped up on bricks and if there was any vigourous activity in the bedroom ;-) then the wardrobe would come crashing over and on one very memorable occasion we were trapped inside it - luckily the door flew open or we would have been mashed.

21st Century Mummy said...

Hi Lindy - thanks for the support. I prefer it this way too.

Welcome back Jo - I've seen how busy you are and it's nice to have you back on the circuit. Congrats on the Nanowrimo by the way. I didn't get a wardrobe, instead I got a beautiful silver bracelet (much nicer than a tin of string) ;-D

Thanks Paul - wheres our photo gone by the way?

Hi Florries mum - Ha ha it does sound a bit Dr Who-esque doesn't it. LOL at the high visibility jacket...must see you wearing it now mind! BB is such a romantic soul.

Hi Laura - men eh? I suppose I would have also been in hysterics if it had been the other way round ;-D

Thanks for the well wishes Patricia - that reminds me of when I chose our wedding songs. I included Lucky Man by The Verve...LOL :-D

LOL Grumps - you've survived too. It is now appearing to be very Doctor Who-ish as suggested by Florries Mum. I wonder if it was the same wardrobe. Anyway... I feel a new blog coming on... www.wardrobenearmisses.blogspot.com

Ruby in Bury said...

Fantastic post - what a story!! Thank goodness you turned round when you did!!

I hope 21st C Dad enjoys his string ;-)

21st Century Mummy said...

Hi Rubes - hee hee...you should have seen 21st C Dad's face this morning...


I am enjoying my new bracelet though...I think I'll have to work twice as hard next time...but that's what you get when you take a 3yr old out shopping with you. ;-D