I am so ashamed of myself. Yesterday afternoon, I left a pan on the hob and then left the house for an hour.
After shopping and collecting Ellie I got home to discover the neighbours had called the fire brigade. My neighbour took my housekeys as I was getting out of the house and he opened the front door. After I'd handed Ellie to my sister-in-law for some emergency babysitting, I raced straight into the house to turn the hob off.
I was followed almost immediately by a fireman in breathing apparatus. It's an odd thing - nothing was going to stop me going in the house to rectify my mistake.
And then I stood outside the house trying to calm down while the firemen checked the place over, before going to have a cup of tea with SIL. Ellie thought she was in heaven - she was playing with a miniature tea set. I was so relieved that I hadn't got upset in front of her.
Thank God for good neighbours. The house was full of smoke - there's a tang of acrid in the air - but no damage done. Apart from to the saucepan. When I'm feeling brave enough I'll take a photo of the pan. Until then, I'm still recovering my equilibrium.
Everyone (even the firemen) is telling me it's the easiest mistake to make, but I still feel like a dumb, distracted, klutz.
The thing I continue to discover is that as hard as I try, I'm still making new mistakes and I don't always learn from other people's. Dammit.