Saturday, 21 April 2012

Mountain roads and volley balls

The other day I played volleyball (the students were having a tournament instead of field trip due to rain and they had some time between the matches and one kid called out my name for me to join in so I did and though i was terrible, I loved it and better still they seemed really glad I was joining in) I also had to do a folk dance thing with all the students, which involved holding their teeny hands and dancing with them. I was so bad, it was brilliant. I loved it. I love how many new experiences there are every day. Today me and Stephanie almost died. We were driving up a mountain along an increasingly narrow lane and we decided at a fork in the road that it was best to turn around and go back (may possibly have been my stupid idea), by going down one fork and reversing up the other. We got to a point where we were halfway into the manoeuvre, I was outside directing and I paniced as did Stephanie, the car had started tipping, I grabbed it and tried to weigh it down, but boy was it scary, the one wheel, maybe two, were off the ground. We decided to stop and stay there and try to think of a way out of it. I phoned the emergency contact with Interac that I have, he got my coordinator lady (who is japanese and helped me set up bank account and took me to my place and my schools etc) (who i really should have thought to call initially, before them) but in the mean time, I went down the slope, leaving steph with her foot on the brake as it would roll/tip if she lifted it off, and with her phone (as mine's battery was dying, so she put it to charge in the ciggarrette lighter) and using google translate on her phone I found help. An old man, the nearest house. I pointed him up the slope and showed him what was going on, he grabbed a rope and a metal clampy thing and set off with his car. He didn't say anything, he was very efficient but silent all the while. I grabbed a hiker and asked for his help too (he was nice and my age) and the old man's daughter and granddaugher (who was clutching two oranges the whole time) came to help too and between us we managed to tie the rope around the back of the car, leaning on it all the while and shift the car backwards, towed by the old man's car. Stephanie got replaced in the driver's seat by the hiker and the car was straightened out, with a few gasp-worthy tilts and wobbles and rolls in the mean time, but eventually it all got sorted. The four of them did all of the work, Stephanie and I didn't know what their plan was as they barely spoke any English but they seemed to know what to do and we thanked them as much as we could and were so grateful and relieved when the hiker let the car down the hill to a point where the parking break was sufficient to keep the car still then we headed back to the flat lands. Lesson learnt: Climb mountains or find big sturdy roads to drive up them, don't find any old lane and decide it's a good idea to drive up. 

1 comment:

  1. That sounds TERRIFYING. And also, can relate so much. I got lost on a mountainside trying to navigate from one school to another during lunchtime, because the alsdkfjalskj jla roads were so small they weren't showing up on the GPS. So of course I got stuck, several times, in tiny lanes, on 45+ degree angles, trying to reverse. -___- Almost ended up in a river during one of my 19-point-turns.

    Cass <3