The water is worse than cold, it is tepid. If it had been cold I would have been alerted to the fact
earlier but there was an amount of warmth that fooled me into thinking all was well. I had been running the bath and having a go at trying to make myself into some semblance of a woman who gave a damn about how I looked .
Whilst I was at work everyday I was getting up and in a daze of routine and automaton I showered and washed then went to work ( usually remembering to brush my hair) every day but since we moved Into Tier 4 and not working in the holidays I have often stumbled downstairs to let my dogs out then curled up on the sofa and sipped a coffee with thoughts I will wash and dress in a while, Until it is nearly tea time and I realise with disgust I am still in a dressing gown and the knots in my hair aren’t going to be tamed without scissors soon unless I wash and condition my hair .
So here I am with a cold bath, filled to the brim in anticipation of a really long hot soak. A lush bath bomb scenting the air and making me suddenly furious that I have wasted it in the cold water. It is a luxury I rarely enjoy any more. The idea of a ‘ sex bomb’ making me silky smooth and feeling lovely no longer anything I care about.
I plunge my arm into the water and pull out the plug. Then like a sullen teenager I go downstairs to remonstrate with the boiler, just what has gone wrong? So the dial has moved and although I have no idea how the bloody thing actually works there is a line scored into the dial on the front which I only realised was there after Andy had died. Until then I would just yell downstairs ‘ the waters cold love!’ And my wonderful husband would perform a little miracle and all would be well. But now I had to go and fix it myself and even though I knew it was ridiculous I kicked the boiler as I did it. It hurt. I have bare feet. My toe now throbbed. I’m flipping freezing and I’ve got goosebumps on my goosebumps.
The red light comes on and the noise that rumbles makes me think something has ignited , right, back upstairs ( with a new glass of wine because by now I’ve finished the one I was going to relax with in the bath in one greedy and grumpy gulp ). I turn the hot tap on and put in the plug, I have one last sex bomb left… I take a deep breath and throw it in. The steam rises and the pink swirling water takes on a hypnotic quantity. I light a candle and turn off the harsh glare of the main light. I tend not to look in the mirror until I’ve done this.
The dim light makes me years younger! Now , at one time I would have always used hair removal cream but as I’ve got older and less bothered with these things I’ve resorted to razors. But in the last 7 months I haven’t bothered after all who the hell cares? But disgusted with myself I decided to attack my legs and despite it being winter and there being none to appreciate soft silky smooth skin I de fuzz my gorilla legs with determination. I smile as I remember my friend once telling me that she only ever did her legs if she was sure she was going to end the night … well lets just say if she didn’t do her legs it was considered contraception.
The bath is full and hot. It’s really hot. I wasn’t going to add cold water in defiance of the failure earlier and I have to ease myself into the bath one foot at a time sitting on the edge and holding my breath whilst I got used to boiling alive. Feeling like a lobster I finally got all the way in. wonderful… bliss… my heart slows with my breathing. I grab my glass and the candle flickers. All is well, and suddenly in that awful moment I catch a glimpse of his shaving brush on the sink and remember, it isn’t well, it’s terrible, still…