Flying Under The Radar

Where the Heck is Murphy?

If I ever get my hands on him he won’t know what hit him. If you’re a military spouse you’ve heard of him. In fact I bet you’ve encountered him a time or two yourself.

Murphy. That guy who wrote Murphy’s Law: anything that can go wrong will go wrong. (In my military spouse’s heart I am certain Murphy’s Law is really a lesser known CANFORGEN.)

I know this Murphy fellow is a serving Canadian Armed Forces member because he has insider information. He ALWAYS knows when my husband is away on duties somewhere.

Here’s my latest example of Murphy’s CANFORGEN.

This isn’t my first rodeo. My husband has been away many times. We’re pretty organized and we’re pretty much interchangeable as parents. I can cook, he can cook. I can drive the taxi, he can drive the taxi. It’s all good.

But sometimes two heads are better than one and sometimes you just need back-up.

I dropped my darling husband (DH) off at the airport at 19:45 exactly two hours before his international flight. Check. Head home, get the homework done, kids showered, everyone in bed, lights out doors locked. Check. So far no sign of Murphy. I’m watching. I’m waiting, but all is quiet.

I get up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night. I feel something on my head. I’m half asleep. I ignore it. Drip. Drip. Drip. Insert expletives here.

Murphy!

I switch on the light and look up. A two foot square expanse of ensuite ceiling is dripping brown water. Drip. Drip. Drip. Sigh. Nothing to do but drape a towel over everything and hope the ceiling doesn’t cave in by morning. There is no way I’m waking everyone up while dragging the ladder to the attic hatch to look and see what’s happening up there.

The next morning my DH texts me to let me know he has safely arrived at his European destination, has enjoyed a delightful meal and is preparing his notes while catching up on some comedy on TV. I respond with an Emoticon devoid of emotion and go in search of Murphy.

First I drag the thirteen year old out of bed and explain to him what the problem is. It’s takes a while for it to register in his foggy sleep deprived brain that he is going to be the muscle behind this little adventure. Thank goodness we spent all that money on those hard karate workouts.

We throw coats on over our pyjamas and spend the next several hours climbing up and down an 18 foot extension ladder. I hold the ladder while the grumpy teenager (GT) shovels snow off the roof directly onto my head.

GT then smashes the ice out of the eavestroughs with a metal mallet while I try to figure out how much salt we need to throw on the roof to melt the six inches of accumulated ice that built up, pushed under the shingles, melted into puddles and dripped on my head as I used the facilities at 3:00 a.m.

I’m frozen. I’m wet. I’m tired.

I hate Murphy. I disliked him after the flood of 1991, but hated him since the hot water heater explosion of 2001. I know I’m not alone. I know other military spouses have their own reasons for hunting him down.

Let’s work together. Let’s find him.

If you know where Murphy is posted let me know. If you know which unit he’s with that’s even better. I need to track him down. We need to have a word or two.

Murphy’s CANFORGEN needs to go to the Ombudsman and Murphy needs to be court marshalled.

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Vicki L Morrison

Thanks to her husband's military career Vicki reinvented herself as a writer so she could work from home, while taking care of their three kids. A former MFRC executive director Vicki is a passionate advocate for military families who loves telling their stories.

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