Peter and I have been married for almost 40 years, and for 39 of those have managed to negotiate doors with little or no problem. In the last 6 months this has changed.

First there was the episode in October when we got locked out of the house and were very lucky not to have to break in through one of the newly installed windows.

Then last night we managed to lock ourselves out of the bathroom. I’d removed the handle/knob from the bathroom side as part of my decorating so I could paint it, and the door.

I’d propped the door open with a heavy object to prevent mishap, but unfortunately had moved said object by a few inches to do another job, not put it back, and so it no longer performed it’s function. Result? Peter came out of the bathroom and closed the door behind him.

I couldn’t believe this was happening again. The knob on our side of the door would not operate the catch mechanism and had no screws in it to facilitate it’s removal.

Various options were considered. In films, opening a door with a credit card seems so easy. Let me assure you it doesn’t work and hurts your fingers.

We also suspected that breaking into it  with a shoulder charge would be less like the movies in real life too. Not to mention possible damage to shoulders and certain damage to my nearly completed decorated bathroom.

Then we considered cutting a small hole in the plasterboard wall at the side of the door catch, so that an arm could be inserted with a screwdriver to hopefully persuade the latch to open.

This was going to be my arm, because it’s smaller, but it would have to be my left one because of the situation of the door, and I’m right handed. Things were looking grim and tempers were becoming frayed.

Then it occurred to us to inspect one of the similar handles on the bedroom door to help better understand the mechanism we were dealing with.

A few minutes later, having done this, the decision was made .A sharp tap with a large hammer and the offending knob dropped off, giving us access to the bathroom once more.

Damage to paintwork was minimal and sanity was once more restored. ‘Every day’s a school day’.