A Scar

chainsaw mishap...

When it’s hot and dry as it has been lately, I’ll wear shorts during the late afternoon and evening. There is usually a breeze out of the west which evaporates sweat, a soothing movement of air.

I was in bed this evening, reading a book. My knees were bent, my thighs forming a surface to support the book at a convenient angle. I happened to notice a scar on my right thigh, a scar I hadn’t thought about for quite some time. A painful memory surfaced and I mentally relived an incident from quite a few years ago.

Behind the first house we built in Missouri there was a wooded ravine. One fine autumn day I was down in that ravine cutting firewood and trimming back brush and sprouts

. Betsy was at school teaching and both kids were there as well.

I was entangled in a persistent patch of oak sprouts, trying to cut my way out with a chainsaw. I lost my balance and struggled to stay erect. I had immediately let up on the chainsaw trigger, but the chain takes a few revolutions to wind down and stop. The chainsaw bar lightly touched my thigh. I heard a faint snick as the chain ate through my jeans and I saw blood blooming from the rip.

I thought “Oh, shit! I need to get to the house!” I threw the chainsaw down and bent over, trying to hold the gaping wound together. I managed to make my way up the hill, still bent over, and made it to the house. I splashed povidone-iodine solution on the wound and taped it up as well as I could. Now that was an injury which could have benefited from stitches!

The wound eventually healed, and after that I was a bit more cautious with a chainsaw!