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March 10, 2011

This morning, I was walking down the street in front of my house when I tripped and landed on one knee. The sidewalk was uneven, and I was wearing high heeled slides, and down I went. I was on my way to my neighbor’s house to peek at the beds of bearded iris she says I can dig up any time I want to. I’m planning to plant them in my flower beds this weekend, if she still says it’s okay.

I ripped a hole in the knee of my jeans, but they were cheap jeans from Costco so I’m not too heartbroken. It’s a look, right?

I scraped up my knee.

I didn’t smash up my face, nor break my wrist. I didn’t even break the glass of water I was holding. I just went down, got up, and kept walking.

It’s what I tell my kids to do when they fall down. Brush it off, rub the pain away, and keep going.

I haven’t done this in ages.

The last time I can remember tripping on the ground and taking out a knee, I was wearing my baby (!!!!!) on the streets of Tokyo. I found out then that when you fall down wearing your baby in Tokyo, the ordinarily reserved Japanese people who see you fall will sit you down and produce tea for you to drink while you recover your strength, and you have to drink a lot of tea before they think you are well enough to be trusted to walk home wearing a baby. I think I drank four liters of tea before I could politely depart, and oh! did I ever have to pee on the walk home. My daughter slept through the whole thing, even me peeing on the fancy Japanese toilet in our apartment while still wearing the Baby Bjorn. She is the soundest sleeper I have ever known.

Another time I tripped while walking down the sidewalk, I was living in Georgetown. I tripped over a half-inch bump in the sidewalk, and I took out a knee, an elbow, and barely kept my face from planting into the sidewalk. I sat on the ground for a minute while I searched in vain for my dignity, when up walked the Russian Ambassador and his bodyguard who were also out taking a stroll. It was in front of his house that I tripped, which he pointed out to me, and said, “You haff to watch out for zhe Russians. Vhe vhill get you if you are not careful.”

I think you would have to have a fantastic sense of humor to be the Russian ambassador to the United States, especially then, when the fall of the Berlin wall was still fresh.

This time, the only person who witnessed my tumble was my mom, who brushed me off and said, “Good for you. Keep going.”

She said that a lot when I had cancer, too, but this time I did.  Because I could.

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  1. askmoxie permalink

    This made me laugh out loud. But take some fish oil and ibuprofen for the knee before it stiffens up. ❤

  2. Warren Woodfin permalink

    To paraphrase Car Talk: Don’t walk like my mother.

  3. Thanks Moxie. I will!

  4. You’re absolutely right about the Russians.

  5. Abigail Carlton permalink

    Clearly you learned something from the Russian Ambassador: when you (or your country’s zone of influence) fall, it’s good to retain your sense of humor.

  6. Mary Knapp permalink

    What really impressed me was that the glass of ice water not only didn’t break, but landed right side up on a sweet tuft of grass.
    **sings** Graceful, graceful, we admire you….

  7. Dances with Reaper Dancer permalink

    I guess I know what I’m digging up this weekend.

    Bearded iris, better watch out, I’m headed your way.

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