I wasn’t even going to tell this story out loud on my blog, because it’s so ridiculous and kind of gross. But I find it, also, sort of hilarious, and you know how I like to get a laugh. And since this blog is a look inside my life, I thought it might be worth telling. This just happened the other night. For real.
It’s 2 am, and I’m woken out of my sleep because I’m roasting hot. Blankets flung off me-half my pajamas off-sweaty neck-hot. I get out of bed to go downstairs and lower the thermostat, but right by nightstand I notice a foul smell. It’s faint, but evident none the less. I sniff around thinking maybe I left a teacup out by mistake. No, not that. I sniff more and start to wonder, maybe it’s just Dino sound asleep–you know how men can sometimes get smelly at night. Not that either.
As I get closer to the staircase and start to head down the smell gets stronger. It’s a bit like sour milk, or more specifically, rotting corpse. I half expected to see a pile of biologicals from the cat on the living room floor. But no. And now the smell is so powerful and so heinous that I call up to Dino, wake him up and make him come down and help me investigate. Maybe it’s something in the recycle bin? No. And not the garbage either. Maybe there’s a rotting onion in the pantry that I didn’t see? No.
And then Dino, on his hands and knees by the fridge, sporting a sickly green pallor, say s “I think I found it”. Do you know what it wassssss? So gross. The night before we had made stir fry for dinner and used, as I always do, just a drop of fish sauce. Apparently, the lid wasn’t on all the way and the contents of the bottle had dribbled out onto the first shelf of the fridge door, down to the second, and out the door onto the floor. Fish sauce doesn’t smell like fish–it’s so much worse than fish. To my dismay, I learned that when an entire bottle is emptied into the fridge with no cover on it, it has the potential to stink up an entire house–all three floors.
In the middle of the night, the two of us groggy from sleep and me without my glasses on, have to completely disassemble the entire refrigerator door to clean it, as well as thoroughly wash and wipe every single bottle in the door as well. It reminded me a bit of what it must be like to have a toddler wake you up in the middle of the night because he barfed in his sheets. It was on that same level of unpleasantness. Just what I want to be doing in my sleep, let me tell you!
Fortunately, once the discovery was made, we were able to resolve the problem quickly. But needless to say, I’m never using fish sauce in my stir fry again.