Dark Night, Fridge and Tears of Joy


EXERCISE: Today you can write about anything, in whatever genre or form, but your post must mention a dark night, your fridge, and tears (of joy or sadness; your call). I capitalised my initial use of each of the three key words/comments. I wanted to try this because I think on days that I can’t figure out what to write, exercises like this might provide fun and inspiration. I would like to return to my love of writing, currently blunted by my horrid thesis experience.

It was a DARK NIGHT in the middle of a bitter storm in the opening days of winter with Autumn waning. My other senses were heightened with the loss of sight. The night was noisy with the trees blowing against the house in their fruitless attempts to retain the last of their foliage before the stark days of winter was reflected by their naked branches. The dark was further deepened with the loss of electricity, worsened even more with the lack of foresight to have alternative light sources like candles or torches ready for action.

I was starving. The temptation to open the FRIDGE and locate anything to eat was balanced with no idea of how long we would be without power. Opening the door potentially threatened the longevity of what was currently residing within the fridge. It was very off putting to stumble through the dark house, making my way to the kitchen. Opening the fridge won, I comfort eat and in this storm I seriously wanted comfort. I know the house like the back of my hand, so usually I just use light to avoid squishing any one of the many cats that somehow thought winding around my moving legs was a good idea. Now I had no illumination and stepped on at least one along the way, steadying myself on the walls. Or rather bouncing after a stumble and to the cacophony of indignant cat screeching.

I made it to the fridge. I reached inside and noted the foreignness of an open fridge door and no welcoming light. As a child I imagined a wee creature in there waiting for the next opening, its life work matching the door opening to the light igniting. I began touching items trying to work out what would be good to eat this late at night. I could not remember what we had in the fridge. I tried touch and smell to identify the items, not quite ready to taste, in case of nasty surprises. Hubby and I do not share the love of all the same foods. Some things felt slimy and others had merged smells, improperly stored and it made it a rather bizarre guessing game. I shopped for everything in their and had no idea what was now in the darkened hull of the silent fridge.

I assembled what I was sure was some raw vegetables, cheese and a glass of milk. I felt my way to the lounge and settled into my lazy boy all ready to be comforted. It was weird but even with no electricity I sat in the same chair as if I was watching the television while I ate (another comfort move). I even had to stop myself putting my lap top on my knee and balancing the plate and that. Just as I went to consume my first mouthful the lights flicked on. I had hit light switches along the way in case and in a nightly habit.

The tension of the night overwhelmed me in the safety of the lights returning, along with it my beloved friend of electricity. I looked at the food in my hand and I CRIED TEARS OF JOY when I realised I was about to eat celery. The returning lights had saved me. Celery is a vegetable I have seriously detested all of my life, but that hubby enjoys. Marriage is compromise and hence its presence in our fridge. I thought it was sliced carrots. A single chew would have resulted in the sudden expulsion of the dreaded vegetable, at a time that racing to the toilet was not possible.

Most of this story was imagination created from lifelong habits, but my hatred of celery is a lifelong one and the “icky” consequence of me accidentally eating it is historically accurate. It was a fun exercise.

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