Thursday, September 22, 2005
Did A Shark Eat You? (with a really gross photo of my arm, be warned)
Well, the bandage has come off my arm and quite frankly it's not a pretty sight. Seems I finally might have a pirate-worthy scar, although I've been doing some research on the mayhem caused by allergies to "black henna" and it might be that any scarring will fade in time. Here's hoping.
Actually this photo was taken yesterday and even since then the bottom part of my arm has healed visibly...it's a really shiny pink beneath but much better than the scabby and blistered look.
I didn't really want to traumatize the children at work, but having my arm all wrapped up was making it itch like crazy. I needn't have worried. Adults are far more grossed out.
"Did a shark eat you?", one little boy asked wonderingly.
"No, silly, it was a lion", said another four-year-old authoritavely.
I wish it was as interesting as all that.
But one grown-up really annoyed me today. I don't mind if people ask me what happened to my arm. I'd be curious too. but one person today was just so rude. It really took me aback.
I was sitting reading a newspaper over at the college cafeteria on my coffee break and a fellow I'd never seen before paused at my table and asked me what had happened.
I gave him the short version and he pressed for more details. So I told him about the way toxic hair dye etc. was obviously used in place of actual henna and how there was probably some other chemical in the mix too, but I wasn't sure what it was that my skin had reacted to so strongly.
He got this really skeptical look on his face and said forcefully, "Liar! You're lying. There's no way you could get some chemical put on your skin and it does that. Look."
And he points accusingly at my hand. "First degree, second degree, third degree burn. There's no way." He'd never even heard of henna. (Obviously he's never heard of sulphuric acid either.)
I looked at him with some coldness. "Nevertheless," I said, which is the word I say to some children when I am ending the conversation. "That is what happened."