Monday, 22 May 2006

Lucky Girl.

I'm home from Madrid! I had an absolutely fabulous time for the most part but I am very very very thankful to be home as I had an accident whilst there (on Saturday afternoon) and for a while I did think I wasn't going to be able to fly home as planned.

I'll write about my weekend over the coming days but I want to share about my accident now as Kat had difficulty understanding my thoughts and feelings after it and I'm wondering how many people will.

We got a tourist bus MadridVision on Saturday and did the entire of the route we were on (Historical Madrid) before getting off at one of the stops (you could get on and off as you wanted). We went to McDonalds to get something to eat in a place that was guaranteed to have a suitable loo for me to use and then started wandering towards Atocha which was the one thing I'd said before I went that I really wanted to go too. It's a railway station that is famous for it's architecture and has a shopping centre and botanical garden in it.

I started wheeling my chair down this ramp to get in. It was a bit steep. But then it got steeper, I lost control of my chair and started skidding badly. I was a bit worried but figured that if I kept hold of my wheels when the ground leveled out I could spin myself and slow down that way and I'd be fine.

I was wrong. You know how at the end of my previous entry I said I'd "Catch you on the flipside?" this literally IS the flipside.

I truly lost control completely and flipped my chair over just like when someone loses control of a car when going fast and it flips onto it's roof.

I landed face first and ended up with blood pouring out of both of my nostrils, multiple cuts and bruises, graized hands and shoulder, split lip, two black eyes and a hugely swollen lip. At one point I had a huge "trout pout" too with how nasty my lips looked. I bashed up my teeth too but I think they are ok.

Some passersby rolled me from my front to my back and then with some security guards they got me sitting up leaning against a fence. I was crying going to Kat "can you call my mum?" the people were talking to me in spanish but my spanish isn't that great and deserted me at that point in time. Thankfully Kat is fluent and she told me that they were calling an ambulance. I said I didn't need one but luckily they ignored that as I really really did.

Most of the passersby dispersed and the security guards lifted me to my feet and manhandled me back into my wheelchair. They got me some tissue and took me to a first aid room where the lady spoke a little english. Two paramedics turned up in mustard yellow uniforms and they checked me out extremely throughly.

My teeth, my tongue, my arms, my legs. they had Kat ask me about my pain (I had a splitting headache, caused I was told by the trauma to my face and my nerves) They got some tweezers and some gauze and tried to put it up my nose to stop some bleeding. I didn't know what they were saying to me so I jerked away and told Kat to find out what they were doing. One of the paramedics held my shoulders and the other held my hands, stroking them going "Tranquillo, tranquillo," as the first aider did it after I was told what it was about and had my "do you have to?" question answered with a yes. They also put gauze between my upper teeth and lips. I attempted to call my mum as Kat had ignored my repeated requests to do so, but right after i hit "call" they took it away from me so I thrust it at her amd went "its ringing"

After a very painful probing of my nose I was told they didn't think it was fractured, they gave me an ice pack to use and then after that was there for a few minutes I could return to the hotel. but that if X or Y or Z happened I had to go to hospital. Luckily they didn't. The first aider let us stay there for a while until I calmed down and got me some pain meds/water for my headache. I was so shocked etc I couldn't calm down and eventually i said i didn't think I'd calm down till we got to the hotel.

The first aider got us a taxi and when we got to the hotel the receptionist went to the restaurant next door to get me some more ice and also found me some cotton wool and antiseptic to clean up with.

I'm still in a lot of pain and feeling lousy but I'm also feeling very lucky to have fallen forwards not backwards. I headed to see the nurse in a few to get checked over again.

My sunglasses are probably beyond repair, but it wasn't my wheelchair, it wasn't my face, I didn't lose consciousness. I wasn't hit by a car when I was lying on the ground and I didn't break my neck.

It was a very very nasty accident but i am a very very lucky girl and I am so, so grateful to be sat here writing this and not in some hospital in Spain.


valja said...

Ouch, oh Emma you're right you ARE a very lucky girl and I am so glad you are not in a hospital! (I'm so squeamish that just reading your description of the accident is enough to get me all out of sorts.) I'm responding because you began by wondering how many people would have difficulty understanding your reactions -- well, I for one do not have any. In fact, I once had a bad fall on vacation and the first thing I can remember doing upon landing was asking for my mom. She wasn't even in that time zone -- but my sister and my dad were with me .. and I am glad they were too, because I ended up in the hospital for a bit (came out with crutches, a leg brace, and bruises that didn't fade for AGES). Ugh. Not the way to spend any part of a vacation. Mom was supposed to join us later, but the minute she found out about the accident she was on the next flight up. I had my share of panic attacks/random tearful outbursts and general stress during that time too. The thing was, I had been at the top of a staircase and had reached for the railing to begin going down the stairs (because that is what I always do, I need the railing, the end.) and as it turns out the railing was several inches too short (several offical-types confirmed this and there was a small, unassuming lawsuit, at least by American standards.) so I reached for something that wasn't there, and proceeded to fall over the side of the rail right down to the bottom. I thank my guardian angel that I got out of that with three stitches. A year after that I was still afraid of accidently falling down stairs, which lead to one incredibly embarrassing crying scene in front of one of my dad's friends. So, yeah, I sympathize.

Still, glad to hear you're back and didn't let it faze you!! Great pics! I want to go to Madrid, you lucky, lucky girl :)


Chana said...

oh honey i'm sorry that you got hurt...of course it must have been so horrible to have the incident happen in a strange country with a strange language...that would just add to the stress...I am glad that you are back home and safe..i read that your nose wasn't broken in a later post...I'm glad that you are okay and proud that you dealt with it as well as anybody could have.


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