They Do Come Back
by Ben

When I was 13, a friend came back from a family holiday in Australia with an imitation plastic boomerang. Being 13, we decided that we'd have to give it a go, so we wandered over to the local park, a windblasted expanse of grassland with a communal soccer pitch, and started trying to get the thing to come back.

At first we spent the entire time running after it, trying to find it in the grass, but after a while, we could get it to come back to reasonably near to where we were standing. Then standing side by side, my friend hoofed the thing into the air. The wind was fairly strong, and caught it, holding it hovering for several seconds. We were gobsmacked. It was amazing, like a bird of prey, it remained spinning, stationary.

Then, quicker than we could react to, the wind died, the boomerang dropped and hit me right between the eyes, just above the bridge of my nose. I dropped to the floor, putting my hands up to my head. There was no pain, just the sound of my friend's laughter... until I rose to my knees, with the boomerang lodged in my head, and blood dripping round my fingers and down my face. He panicked, and dragged me to a nearby hut that served as a changing room for teams playing on the communal soccer pitch.

I walked in to a room full of younger kids getting changed after a game of soccer, and was met by a wall of amazed silence... which was swiftly washed away by howls of derisive laughter. I was dazed, in shock, and could say nothing. My friend asked for the person in charge, and he (one of the dads , I think) came forward, guided me to a seat, and immediately tugged at the boomerang. It came out of my head easily, but felt very strange, the feeling of the boomerang separating from my bone was discernable. My friend cringed. The blood flowed, the dad rushed to phone the ambulance.

I met my mother outside the hospital, and went in to the Accident and Emergency ward clutching a bloodstained cloth to my head. All was fine in there, apart from the presence of a group of Australian student nurses...

As I waited with my mother in a curtained cubicle, the sound of giggling outside was discernible. Every once in a while, a head would appear around the curtain, and then disappear to a further ripple of giggling. At first, we thought it was just an orderly checking to see who was in there, and that the giggles (not an uncommon sound in the high stress world of A and E) were nothing to do with us.However, on the fifth or sixth repetition of this, the friendly face said, in a broad Australian accent

"So they do come back then..."


The biggest problem with this scar is that it is quite fetching, crossing diagonally between my eyebrows, and repeated girlfriends have commented on it, expecting a 'You should have seen the other bloke" type story. Being fairly honest, I feel obliged to regale the true story, and find that being laughed at is now part and parcel of a new relationship...

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