The Ghanaian ‘winter’ arrived this morning. I actually sensed its proximity yesterday, as it dropped few hints of coldness and dryness. It obviously is a snowless winter, as there is no way snow could possibly survive a few centimetres into our atmosphere; it would be incinerated by the sun!
The atmosphere was foggy, cold and dry. And It greeted me with a frigid embrace that immediately altered my routine. “Hot water”, I thought, finally accepting that this and the following mornings of the year were going to be spent mostly without the refreshing flow of cool water from the showers. Hot water wasn’t a bad idea, considering the weather. The kettle was now going to be my friend: The shower, my enemy – more accurately, my frenemy.
I had to inform one of my roommates that we were going to be sharing his bestfriend. And I did, quite impressively too:
“Brrr! I think I’m going to be joining you old ladies on the early-morning-hot-water team. Where do I register?”
He smiled and handed me his heater.
Impressive, right? Maybe (*smirk*). But totally not what happened . . .
“I’m going to cook myself this morning like you always do”, I joked.
But that joke really cost me . . . And I mean really!
The taps were not running, but I already had my cool water fetched in a bucket from our storage tank. I had the last bit of remaining water. All I had to do now was quite simple. I had read it over and over again from some cookbook, from the section ‘Heating Water: When All You Have Is A Bucket of Water’: Heat some of the water in the kettle; Pour it in the bucket; Reheat some of the same water from the bucket; Pour back into the bucket; Repeat until desirable temperature is reached.
I followed every instruction to the letter – except the ‘desirable temperature’ part. I failed to dip my hand in the bucket to be sure I was OK with the water temperature. After three cycles of heating, I moved my bucket to the bathroom and was ready to have a fittingly warm bath in the cold weather. First drop of water . . . my skin was scalded. I jumped out with my towel straight to the room, and scrambled through the freezer compartment of the refrigerator for ice blocks to cool the water down. I got a few: But they weren’t enough, succumbing within a few minutes to the fiery heat of the bucket-water. There was no cool water within reach: The prognosis was clear and disturbing; I had to make do with my bucket of piping hot water. Needless to say, I had an agonizing bath: I ended up cooked.
* * *
Some may want to call it an unfortunate coincidence; I call it ‘The Power of Your Words’. So many people have had countless experiences like mine; where they had to pay for their words, or benefitted from them. It may not happen as speedily as mine did, but eventually it will. That’s how powerful words are!
I joked, and I got cooked. Imagine what your words could do if you got serious with saying some positive stuff about yourself.