Sunday, July 22, 2012

Flash burn...

     I don't remember now where I was working but it was one of those companies or organizations that required us to sit through annual safety training meetings.  It was usually boring but an excuse to get away from our desks for 30-60 minutes.  The particular training I'm thinking of was facilitated by a woman who should have been the poster child example of what NOT to do.  This woman had us almost rolling on the floor with laughter because she kept giving us examples of things that she had actually done.

     Like rushing through the rain to get into the building, slipping in a puddle and breaking her wrist.  Walking down a flight of stairs while sending a text message, missing a step, and spraining her ankle when she fell.  Being distracted by someone talking and walking into an open upper cabinet door, requiring stitches on her forehead.  You know the type.  One of those people who are chronically accident prone no matter what they try to do.  The fact that she was chosen to lead our safety briefings was inappropriately appropriate.

     Yesterday, I could have been that poster child.  I mean... I knew better...

     I was shredding old documents... stuff with social security numbers, birth dates, bank records... and the shredders were getting hot and jamming.  They had been sitting in the garage for almost two years so were filled with dust and dirt.  A few weeks ago when I had been shredding, I sprayed the teeth with lubricant when I finished, so yesterday did it again.

     Now... here is the visual for you.  Container half filled with shredded paper.  Lubricant liberally sprayed into the teeth.  Friction from the metal teeth as they shredded the paper.  Poof.  Fire in the hole.

     I was lucky.  Really really lucky.

     I have one of those "I-am-four-years-old-and-can-cut-my-own-hair" looks where my bangs on the left side of my face are shorter than the right.  The shoulder length strand of hair that would have been a left side burn on a guy is gone.  It is only about a quarter of an inch long now.  All of my eyelashes on my left eye are half the length of my right because they were almost singed off.  The only reason I'm not blind now in my left eye (my one GOOD eye) is because of my glasses... and my Guardian Angel.  Ice on my face for thirty minutes kept my left eyelid and lips from blistering, but for a while I wasn't sure if I got ice on them fast enough.

     Safety lesson learned:  Use products specifically made for the equipment you are using... like shredder oil for shredders... not flammable spray lubricant made for chains.  Read the labels... if it says the word flammable anywhere on it, don't use it with something that will get hot or create sparks and friction.

     Last night I lay in bed thanking God and my Guardian Angel for saving me from what could have been a very bad day yesterday.  I thought of how quickly my world of light and color could have become a world of darkness.  I thought of all the sunrises and sunsets I might have missed.  All of the smiles.  All of the words... that would have become music to my ears... but not light to my eyes.  I wasn't just lucky... I was blessed.  Highly blessed.

1 comment:

  1. OMG! OMG! Thank God you are alright! You DO have a Guardian Angel, and thank God she was there with you. Thanks for sharing your story. (I think it was our office with the crazy lady, by the way....)

    It was a good to hear from you, though. I hope your Guardian Angel is looking out for you in ALL ways.....


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