If ever there was a salutary tale, on the subject of not using edged tools when you're tired and particularly, using the correct tool for the job, well..........how about this;
I came off nightshift this morning, went to bed and as I went, asked my wife to get me up at 12 noon, as I had a couple of jobs I wanted to get finished in the garden, before retiring to the "lab" to continue with some leather work I've got on the go.
I took my time when I was called from slumber, had a cuppa,a quick wash and set to with the garden stuff. I was still groggy but the sunshine and fresh air seemed to be doing me the world of good.
I decided I needed a couple of short pegs making and rather than pop into the garage to collect my knife, I picked up one of my old hatchets, which was handy and set about the making of said pegs.
I've absolutely no idea how I did what I did next but something slipped and the result was this:
I felt the blade hit the bone in my thumb and knew instinctively, that it was a nasty "bite" this time
I went back into the kitchen, totally ignoring my first aid kit, which was right next to me!
I grabbed a load of kitchen towel paper and quickly wrapped the finger and thumb and applied a lot of pressure.
Then I danced around a bit, swearing and cursing my stupidity, and stupidity it most certainly was. Then the shock hit me, very much harder than I recall ever before.
I began to sweat heavily and felt extremely ill I started to feel very dizzy too and remembered the sensation years ago, when I broke an ankle on exercise
I'm fairly certain I passed out, at one point, sitting in the living room,fighting off the dizziness and nausea. My wife and son were both with me and didn't notice any obvious faint but i definitely lost a minute or so somewhere.
Anyway, I eventually took a good look at it and confirmed what I already knew; I needed to seek medical attention, so there being no other drivers in the household yet, we phoned my brother across in Hexham to see if he could help out.
He arrived in surprisingly short order and we went first to the new, local walk in centre ( really, a waste of time, should have gone with instinct and went straight to a&e but never mind)
Where after only a short wait,was immediately told to go straight on, to the Royal Victoria Infirmary, in Newcastle.
Again, I was seen and dealt with very rapidly and within an hour and a half, had been triaged, x-rayed and seen by a plastic surgeon, who has booked me in for urgent surgery, tomorrow morning.
I've severed the tip of the thumb bone, though I haven't actually lost anything yet. The cut through the thumb nail goes through a good 8mm, with a about 3mm left keeping the tip on the bottom.
There wasn't a huge amount of blood but the pain was and still is, intense.
They are going to open up both wounds, scrub them out, remove the thumb nail, possibly remove the bit of bone that's floating about now and then stitch everything back together again.
An 8am appointment with no finish time specified
Why did I do what I did? dunno
Why wasn't I practising what I preach, ref kevlar gloves and using the right tool for the job? one word: STUPID
So that's me out of order for a week or two.
Please try to remember; take care with your edged tools, even if you have been using them for years and years and years.
It can happen to any of us
best wishes and stay safe lads and lasses