Friday, July 11, 2008

999

We found him lying on the floor half way up a footpath leading from the station to the main road. He was being helped by a lady who could not speak much English and she seemed grateful that we stopped. He half made it to his feet, hauling himself up on the railing before staggering and falling back to the ground. His rucksack was unzipped and we could see medication inside. He pulled himself to a sitting position and mumbled incoherently. Then the heavens opened and rain started pouring down, soaking us all in an instant. We asked him what was the matter, he said he didn't know but he felt 'heavy'.

Decision time: we couldn't leave him there but it didn't seem enough of an 'emergency' to call an ambulance. The mumbling and the rain continued. I called 999. Asked for an ambulance, explained our location and said it didn't seem a proper emergency but I thought he needed help. Five minutes later a paramedic arrived in an ambulance-car. He established the man was an alcoholic who had just been released from hospital and who had other health problems. The man who wouldn't tell us anything beyond his first name seemed to trust the paramedic with his uniform and accompanying kit-bags.

We waited for a few minutes to see if we could do anything else but the paramedic said that there wasn't anything but that we had done the right thing in calling him. So we left, walked on to our intended destination: the church where we hope to get married next summer.

1 comment:

The Dotterel said...

Seems you did the right thing, but it's never clear, is it?