Blue, purple, green and yellow – just some of the colours my knee has turned.
Every summer, I seem to do violence to my knee, right at the start of the holidays.
I have knapped my kneecap on a boulder in Cappadocia and plonked my patella on a rock at Kaikoura.
Two years ago was the most spectacular: on our first day in Cornwall I fell down down a step going into a pub. (“Into”, I tell you.) I landed on both knees on concrete and was writhing on the ground with agony.
The children tell me I wasn’t very polite to people trying to help me up. A kind bystander disappeared and returned with plasters from her house, but I had skinned my knees so thoroughly that there was nothing left for the sticky bit of the plaster to adhere to.
This year we were in a wood in Languedoc. We had just climbed a hill by means of a track slippery with smooth limestone. The ascent was arduous in the heat and the descent treacherous. As it levelled out at the bottom, I relaxed, took my eye off the ball and slipped over.
However, it could be worse – and at least now I have a grazed knee, I know that it is truly the summer holiday.