Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Mind the Gap

OK, I'll admit it. I'm clumsy. My thighs often show colorful evidence of unfortunate collisions with tables, chairs, doorknobs, railings, and anything else that gets in the way of my journey from Point A to Point B. Recently I further "distressed" my already distressed Diesel jeans by tumbling down a few steps; that hole in the right knee is authentic, thank you very much. I have never broken any bones or twisted any joints, however, and have only a few stiches to show for childhood horseplay with cousins and siblings. Up until today I have never had any serious accidents. Sure, I was stuck overnight at Gatwick when there was a crazy with a grenade, and one time a drunk driver barely missed the restaurant terrace where we were dining and plowed into the boutique next door instead, but no bodily harm, or even serious threat, ever resulted.

But even clumsiness alone can't explain what happened to me today in the metro. I was coming down the stairs and I saw my train arriving. I hurried up and hopped in as soon as all the descending passengers exited. My right foot made it...but where is my left foot and leg? What is happening to me? I hear the door alarm ringing, and the doors begin to shut on me as my left leg is caught between the train and the platform. I feel myself being pulled up by the other passengers, just before the doors shut behind us. Everyone asks me how I feel, I say fine. My left leg hurts and I don't understand what happened. I think about it all the way to my destination, and hours later I am still ruminating on what happened and what a serious accident I just avoided. Somehow when I stepped onto the train my right foot must have slid and my left foot didn't quite make it. The platform was curved, and I was at the end of the train, which made the gap between the train and the platform even wider than normal.

When I replay the accident in my mind, it feels like only my foot was caught. I was still standing, I didn't fall and my hands didn't touch the ground, so it couldn't have been more than my calf that was dangling. When I came home to take a hot bath and calm down, I discovered that I was wrong. Starting with a lovely apple-sized bruise on my calf, I have another smaller one on my knee and then a scattering of purple from my knee to my upper thigh. What the fuck happened to me. I wish I could say that I am very old and feeble, or that I was drunk or high, or that I was wearing 4-inch heels, or that I was running breathlessly after the train to catch it, or any combination of the above. But I wasn't! Young, perfectly sober, in very sensible flats (open-backed, by the way - how did they not fall off?!), neither running nor sprinting, only the usual rush. A colleague tried to reassure me, "Don't worry, that happens all the time, especially with the little ones." But this just reminded me of my ineptitude, putting my skills at using public transportation on par with those of a toddler. I was a bit leery of the metro when I rode it back home, and I still feel embarrassed for today's catastrophe. Mind the gap, indeed.


1 comment:

Zidane y va marquer said...

That's terrible. =/

I love your blog, by the way.