I was eating lunch, enjoying leftover chicken enchiladas and the quiet of Wade napping. I glanced at the clock.
The trash can was still in the driveway. Stuffed to the brim, the lid propped up slightly by the last bag jammed in on top. The trash truck would arrive any minute.
It Had. To. Get. To. The. Curb!
What would we do with this week’s garbage if last week’s didn’t get picked up?
We can’t just sit the bags outside. Stray cats tear them open, feast on the leftover bits of hot dog and macaroni, then scatter tin cans and wrappers all over the yard.
The trash would have to go in the garage. And it would pile up. And stink. And inevitably a bag would get a hole in it, and the unidentifiable goo produced by our waste would ooze out all over the cement floor. It would over take us, bury us alive. We would end up on an episode of Hoarders!
The trash must go to the curb.
I ran to the door, and thrust my feet into a pair of sandals I left out hoping maybe winter wouldn’t come this year.
I tore open the door, and ran down the steps.
Somehow my right foot missed the last step. I tumbled to the cement slab at the bottom of the stairs, catching myself with my hands and my left knee. My right foot caught on the bottom step, and bent and twisted painfully. I heard, and felt, something in my ankle pop.
I couldn’t get up. The pain was unbelievable. I laid there crumpled up in a heap at the bottom of the steps moaning, thankful that our mini-van in the driveway blocked the view of me writhing on the ground from the neighbors, and cars driving by.
Then I heard it. The familiar beep, beep. The ssssssssssssssssss of the air brake. The rumble and rattle of the trash truck. It was just a few houses away.
I tried to pick myself up off the cement, but I couldn’t stand. There was no way I could drag the trash can all the way up the driveway to the road.
I leaned back against the steps, and listened to the roar of the garbage truck as it drove past my house.
I managed to crawl up the steps into the house, get Wade out of his crib and feed him lunch eventually. It turned out to just be a minor sprain. I don’t know what popped, and I don’t why it hurt so bad right after the fall. I’m so thankful I didn’t have to go to the doctor, because I didn’t shave my legs that day.