Brush with Death

I have two very long accounts to write and post on my blog, which I have slowly been chipping away at in the midst of vacation and coursework, the account of my birthday and my adventure in Belgium/Northern France. I’m hoping to get those 100% FINISHED before my upcoming trip to Amsterdam (this weekend!).

Anyway, this incident happened about a week and a half ago. I was taking the Metro (RER Line C, Bibliotheque Francois Miterrand) to the outskirts of the city to go see a movie with Francisco. I absentmindedly waited for the door to open as we pulled into the station, the tip of my finger placed on the door’s lever. However, some of these metro cars have degraded a bit since their introduction into the system–this one, for instance, was missing its protective black rubber barrier that separated travelers’ fingers from the lever’s jaws of death.

When the train stopped, I pressed the lever and felt a powerful, sharp pain overcome me–my finger was stuck in the area beneath the button, wedged firmly as the door tried to wrench itself open. The door dragged my finger (and my arm along with it) towards the menacing crack in the metro door that threatened to break my wrist in two. At this point, I was plainly screaming as Francisco leapt into action, retaining the door in place with all his might. In all the commotion, I completely lost track of all of my bodily movements but said finger, which meant that my purse and all of my prized possessions came tumbling to the ground, managing to find and fall down into the crack between platform and train.

Somehow I got free of the train and rushed for land, after fielding a thousand “ca va’s” and ricocheting them back to the harried French around me. I think that in the confusion I had also slipped out some half-formed Spanish to Francisco: “Me duele… FINGER OWWWW!!!!”

Even though my finger was throbbing and swollen and my shoulder felt bruised from the sharp yank I had been given, now I had more immediate matters to deal with: how to make sure that my kindle didn’t get run over by the beast that I had just escaped. After being sternly called out by a French woman who thought that I was going to jump into the tracks to save a piece of equipment that cost much less than my life was worth, I decided to wait until the train passed to retrieve my things.

Luckily, Francisco was able to hop down and get my partially beaten-up but still functional purse and items. He was almost as flipped out as I was at this point. Later, he would go on to tell me that if a person touches the tracks they can be electrocuted… so I’m glad that he was the one doing the retrieving and not me.

1 comment
  1. Cyndee said:

    Yikes! This was stupid! And scary to even read. You need to be more careful and I hope Francisco didn’t put his life on the line just to get your stupid kindle. That was soooooo not worth it.


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