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Dirty Little Secret

July 28, 2014

Jim was in Duluth working the spaghetti feed, so I was all alone when it hit…

That beast came out of nowhere and knocked me flat. I was dazed and felt like I was sprawled on the floor. I simply did not know what hit me! I hadn’t been wrestling with my demons, or even thinking about them. Perhaps that’s why I was easy pickings.

I gathered my wits and when I could once again string a couple of words together to form a complete thought, I recognized my foe. I stared it down… This was not our first battle.

It was a KILLER craving. The kind of craving that would have me contemplating a trip to Duluth (twenty-four miles) barefoot to satisfy. I hadn’t had a craving like that for a long time… possibly years.

This craving Would. Not. Be. Denied.

I began to rummage through the house in search of a fix… and was inexplicably drawn to the basement.

I could hear it calling my name… faintly, but distinctly.

Once downstairs, I opened a door. And there it was, sitting in its own little corner, back-lit by white light; it was radiant… and it was calling me, beckoning me closer. Inviting me… Tempting me…

I fixed my eyes upon it; I became transfixed. It pleaded, “It’s gooood… C’mon, try a little…”

My hand reached out of its own accord and touched it. A little electric tingle passed between us. I just knew we were meant for each other… and I was home alone. No one would ever know. My fist closed tightly around it and carefully extracted it from its berth.

I cradled it in my arms as I ascended to the kitchen.

It wasn’t exactly what I was craving, but it would make a good base. I could add an ingredient or two and it would suffice.

I laid claim to it, dug in the cupboard, chose a vessel, transferred it from its container to mine.

It. Was. Mine.

I went in search of the other ingredients… opening the bottom left door, slowly sliding my baking supply drawer open, reaching in and closing my fingers around the brown plastic rectangular cover of the Hershey’s cocoa can.

The cocoa sang to me, pitch perfect, of course.

I clapped my eyes on the dish of vanilla ice cream on the counter. My craving DEMANDED chocolate. It did not ask politely, or even suggest… it made its demand and I raised the white flag of defeat.

I would mix a little cocoa into the ice cream and make do.

Mesmerized by the cold confection, I removed the cocoa from the baking drawer by rote, lifting it straight up, then shifting to a horizontal motion to clear the cupboard, then up and over to set the can on the counter. It was kind of a complicated series of movements but I wasn’t worried… I’d done it hundreds of times before.

My thought process, however, was a nanosecond ahead of my arm movement… or maybe the cocoa can was taller than I remembered…

The bottom edge of the cocoa can clipped the upper lip of the drawer. I was left holding only the lid. My right leg was covered with a thick layer of cocoa powder, from mid-thigh clear down to the floor. My new white shoe was coated brown as well. Baking cocoa covered the cupboard shelves, both top and bottom, and spilled out on to the hardwood floor.

My three little dogs quickly gathered ‘round, eager to help with the clean-up.

“NO! SIT!” I commanded. “STAY!!!”

I slipped my foot out of my shoe and hustled over to the closet to retrieve the vacuum, sternly commanding the dogs to keep their distance from the mess. Amazingly, the canines obeyed.

I quickly connected the vacuum hose attachment and sucked up as much cocoa as I possibly could, then wiped down the shelves and floor with a damp rag. I thought I’d put the vacuum away before I indulged in my ice cream. As I coiled the hose, I saw that its inner surface was coated with cocoa; I giggled as I took it outside and sprayed it down with the water hose, then hung it in the shower to dry and made a mental note to put it away before Jim came home… I could imagine the questions he’d ask, but would have to work on a suitable response.

I changed clothes and returned to the scene of the accident.

By that time, I had a lovely cold chocolate soup… It was delicious!

Thankfully, I remembered to take the vacuum hose out of the shower. I felt like I’d dodged a bullet!

Jim came home; he was none the wiser.

The next day I vacuumed the living room carpet as he ate his lunch at the counter.

Since I’m frugal by nature, I only change vacuum bags when they’re full… and those HEPA filter vacuum bags for a Kirby are expensive! I turned the machine on and went to work. Soon the house was scented with cocoa! I worked furiously, keeping my back to my husband lest he notice me struggling not to laugh.

In the end, he kept his mouth shut and so did I.

  1. Jan permalink

    Funny! It sounds if your guardian angel was trying to save you, but you didn’t want any help! LOL!
    Loved the story!

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