As I picked the tin of tomato soup out of the cupboard, my next thought was to locate the tin opener.
I wasn’t sure where the tin opener was, and I wasn’t sure why I didn’t immediately know where to look.
Admittedly we mostly ate Maggie’s homemade soup for lunch, but the occasional tin of soup wasn’t an unknown phenomenon.
I found the tin opener at the back of the second draw I looked in, but although I knew how to operate it, the action felt unfamiliar: almost like somebody else’s memories.
I wasn’t sure why it felt like this. I wondered if we had a different tin opener – perhaps some fancy electric thing – I’d been using more recently. But I was pretty certain we didn’t have one of those, and I definitely couldn’t think where in the kitchen it might be located if we did.
So allowing my hands to work on muscle memory rather than conscious familiarity, I squeezed the levers, puncturing the lid, then turned the winder until the tin had rotated the full 360 degrees and the last piece of the metal was cut through.
I fished the lid out of the soup and poured the contents in to a pan.
At which point I saw the ring-pull on what I had hitherto assumed was the underside of the tin, and the universe abruptly shifted.
Now I suddenly existed in a world where easy-to-open cans had been the norm for many years, and all the memories of using the ring-pulls were right there in the front of my brain, as easy to access as turning on a tap or opening a fridge door.
There are some theories about the structure of the universe that reckon there are an infinite amount of parallel universes which exist along side our own, each with minute differences to the next one.
It feels slightly more comforting to believe I gently slipped from one universe (where ring-pulls on tins didn’t exist) into another (where they do), than drawing any more obvious conclusion.