Monday, December 3, 2012

Trapdoor pratfall

A few days ago I was visiting a friend in Vancouver and had an embarrassing accident that left me bruised both in body and ego.  It happened that as we were heading out my friend's front door I spotted a lovely flower at the edge of her property and I stepped off the path to head over and take a photograph.  Glancing down I noticed a paving stone and was grateful that it was there so I didn't have to step in the soggy garden.

But--it wasn't a paving stone.  It was the cement top to a large sump buried in the garden.  The cement top was not seated properly on the top of the well and when I stepped on it a shocking thing happened.

This little series of drawings shows it clearly.  Here I am blindly stepping on the flat stone...

The stone tilts under my boot dropping me straight down into the well.  

As the stone top flips it hits me in the chest and I grab onto it with both hands to keep from landing in the water.  It all happened so quickly that I'm not exactly sure how it went.  All I know is that in an instant I was trapped in the sump with my boots dangling into the black water.  

My friends had to drag me out of there, after they figured out where I'd disappeared to.  Fortunately my  camera suffered no damage.  My ribs and my leg fared less well; they both have serious bruises. It's now been three days since I fell in the well and I am still kind of shaky and sore.  I think it may take a while for the bruised/cracked ribs to repair. 

Now I have to say that when I tell people what happened to me I'm met with a combination of horror and giggles.  It's like something out of a bad movie really.  I was tempted to keep the whole thing to myself but I'm having to explain why I am mooching around the house feeling sorry for myself.  And there really was no need to post this on my blog but somehow writing about it and drawing these little cartoons has helped me to process what happened.  

It seems that the pond guys had not put the stone lid back properly and I just happened to step in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Amazing what some people will go through for a photograph!


  1. I am so glad to hear you are fine. What a shock that must have been.
    As for your friends... what the **** are they thinking ? That well/hole in the ground what ever it is... is an accident just waiting to happen, like yours. What would happen if the slab again is not put back right and a child ran in the yard, a dog even a deer ?
    Again so glad you are fine and healing kind of puts a damper on getting ready for the Holidays.

    The Square Ones send woofs !
    cheers, parsnip

    1. Hi Parsnip,
      Thanks. My friend who owned the house had no idea that the top was left off. The pond company was responsible and came out to fix it up. The scary thing was that a small child could have stepped on it. Or as you say a dog or...? They're lucky I'm not suing!

    2. I just very happy your OK sore but Ok.
      Your friends are super lucky that they have you for a friend.
      After living in California where everyone sues everyone.... even if the pond people left the top undone it is their property and they are responsible. I would have a big potted plant on it or a iron lock with a key.
      Again so happy your OK.

      cheers, parsnip

  2. That's a terrible thing to happen! I'm so sorry. I hope you feel better, soon, and that you lived to tell.

  3. So sorry to hear about your fall. The little drawings explain it all so well. I hope you will be feeling better soon. I wonder if your friends knew of this danger?

  4. Gee, Lucky that concrete stone never hit you on the head ... or you wouldn't be writing this at all.. hope you heal soon.

  5. I guess you could say that you were lucky to get away with scrapes and bruises. But, yikes! That would have been so scary. I know what you mean about how fast things happen!

    So nice to see some of your drawings again. Mooch until you're all better.


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