The doorbell rings. Sweet escape! My friend’s mom is visiting and she asks to borrow aluminum foil.
“Sure! Just wait while I get it…” and I bustle off and back and hand over the foil.
We chat a minute and she walks back across the street to prepare dinner. I am forced back to my kitchen, open the fridge, the freezer, the pantry door, hoping the perfect ingredients will fall out at me.
They don’t. But there is a large ham in the bottom drawer of the fridge. Perfect!
Since I had given my friend’s mom the foil, and didn’t feel like asking for it back so quickly, I cleverly covered the ham with ham-sized-oven-proof bowl.
About an hour in, the house smelled like lovely smoked ham. I was congratulating myself on a safe and well-prepared meal when I turned the bend from playroom to kitchen and saw warm smoked-ham-smoke billowing up from the back of the stove controls.
Expletive. I know how well our alarm system works, and as I thought that, the alarm went off.
The disco inferno light throbbing out from the side of our house, my son and daughter already racing toward the nearest exit, each dragging a howling poodle.
“Geesh! Don’t worry! It’s just smoke!”
And I called 911 and let them know it was just smoke and not to dispatch the firefighters.
“I am sorry, ma’am, they are already on their way.”
The truck and ladder trucks appear, the Fire Chief’s truck, the other truck that I forget what it is called but is always there.
I greet them on the front stoop.
“Hey guys! I am sooo sorry! There really isn’t a fire, it’s just this ham….”
“You know the drill, Mary, we gotta check this out…”
“I know, I know,” I nod, my lips pulled in, my mouth a straight line of agreement.
The firefighters flow back to the familiar kitchen, opening, checking.
One looks over his shoulder and smiles, “Now THAT is a smoked ham!”
I give him a lop-sided smile.
The next reassures, “At least there were no flames this time….”