I’d wedged the bathroom door – there being no lock- and then turned my attention to the wash basin. After I’d done major ablutions successfully I started on my feet.
Wearing sandals in a dusty country they were not a pretty sight.
I filled the basin again. The water was lovely and warm. Then I gingerly raised my foot, with my hand, to the required waist level of the sink.
I am not and have never been, very agile or athletic. I used to find it extremely difficult and painful to sit crossed legged on the floor at school. I am just not a bendy person.
I got my foot in, but unfortunately the basin fell off.
My stress level shot off the scale. What had I done? These poor people! I was hopping around on one leg, with the basin swaying around on thin pipes and one leg up in the air, stranded. Images of elephants in tutus did cross my mind. The water was slopping on the floor and I was slipping.
I managed to lean over and grab the windowsill to steady myself with one hand and then gingerly pull my foot out over the basin edge with the other hand.
I dried my foot and mopped up the floor. You have nothing to fear but fear itself? Remaining a little vague about how it had actually happened and courage screwed up, I went and admitted to my criminal damage.
She was remarkably phlegmatic about it.
“Oh I keep doing that, my son was supposed to have fixed it for me.” No… she really would not have done what I had done.
The next morning her daughter, who also seemed to appear from nowhere, showed me how to put my toothbrush in a little loop of metal in the shower enclosure and use the toothbrush as a handle.