I held the phone in one hand and began dialling the number with the other.
My daughter reached forward, pushing my head down to her eye level and plucking something from my tresses with the speed and aplomb of an ape picking lice off a hairy chum.
"What? What is it?"
"You've got something in your hair."
"Oh my god, is it cooties?"
A bit of a pause.
The number I had dialled rang on throughout this exchange and was answered at this point, but I was laughing too hard to speak.
I mean, it's enough to have butter in your hair, but understandable, if it is in the long bits at the front that may have accidentally encountered the toast at breakfast. But this was a sizeable nugget of butter, right on the very top of my head. How? How is it possible to get butter there? And to complete the hilarity was the knowledge that I had just finished a busy morning of interviewing people for seasonal staff vacancies. I had also been looking after a photographer who had come to take some pictures for conservation purposes. At no point had any of these people commented on my buttery barnet. They must have seen but didn't like to say anything. Maybe the interviewees thought it was a test of some sort. Maybe they thought I had become confused about using product in my hair and had unwisely opted for a dairy product. I may never know.
Eventually I managed to regain my self-control. "I'm sorry," I sputtered down the phone, "I've just been informed there is butter in my hair."
Luckily it was my mother, who opted to completely ignore that interesting and informative conversation starter and chatter on regardless. I handed the phone to my daughter and left them to it. I had buttery hair to de-grease.