Us working mums have hectic schedules and it’s easy to neglect the little things in life like washing your hands after you’ve been to the toilet. And when you’ve a diet that’s as rich and varied as mine, the bathroom can become a seething, nightmarish jungle of microscopic ghouls.
Indeed, when my children were potty training, I was elbow deep in faecal matter for the best part of a decade and we all just had to learn to live with it. These days, my internal flora is a miracle of science but not everyone is so formidable as I discovered one evening when I had ‘Baroness W’ over for dinner. Instead of complimenting me on my glistening clam, she was abruptly taken out with a nasty bout of dysentery. That was one unctuous, steaming rump she’d never forget but sadly for all the wrong reasons.
The following Sunday, before I got knuckled down in the kitchen, my husband caught me emerging from the bathroom with shame on my hands again. He raised one eyebrow at me so I flashed him my best coy smile, murmured the word ‘exquisite’ – and then quite forgot what I’d been doing!
Well, as you can imagine, what happened next rather called to mind the story of the old lady who swallowed a spider, which wriggled and tiggled and jiggled inside her. Except the spider was a waterborne lovely called ‘norovirus’ that made a terrible mess of our Egyptian cotton sheets.
(In this situation, you might want to introduce some Febreze, but I can’t recommend enough the difference made by shelling out that little bit extra on a Jo Malone ‘Serpent and Black Daffodil’ room spritz. Delectable!)
I was curious about our playful microscopic companions, so I invited my professor friend over for supper. He took a few scrapings and revealed up to 500 families of bacteria were living between my breasts. At this stage, I considered it wise to remain silent about the special folding method I’d used to get the perfect fluffiness on the cheese souffles. But a word of advice would be to stick to a palette knife in future. Stiff peaks!
These days, I’ve learned my lesson so I always take care to pump generously onto my guilty fingers I could literally squirt all day long. You can buy supermarket own brand handwash but I rather prefer the special cleaning power of Cinzano and crushed diamond. Then, I simply work myself up to a good old-fashioned lather before replacing my fist into my mouth and gnawing slowly. Yummy!