This post has been started several times, but never seems to find itself a conclusion. Either that or it becomes redundant. Anyway, I just need to cough it up or nothing else will be written. So here it is.
As most of you know by now, I fell. In the early morning of April 9, 2006, I went quietly out the third story window of a hotel in Port Costa, California. I had been drinking in celebration of the birthdays of some friends. Feeling too drunk and too tired to keep up with the party, I retired to my room, and roughly an hour later, for reasons still unknown, I opened the window and went out of it.
I don’t remeber the fall. I don’t know what I did for that hour. What I do remember is a dream. A dream in which I was walking down a hall or canyon, only it wasn’t in a room, but a space created out of the placement of larger things. Like walking among very large containers. I was walking with someone, but I can’t remember who. A child I think.
The next thing I know, I’m being awoken by shining flashlights and voices over my head. But I’ve already told this part of the story here.
There really hasn’t been too much else to add. In telling the story since, I’ve heard numerous similar falling stories from all sorts of people. In some stories people are lucky, in some they aren’t. And then there are those like the one my father told me about my grandfather sleepwalking out of a second story window. In that story my grandfather falls and breaks his leg.
I’ve since come home to my apartment in Oakland, where my beloved Doobie has been taking care of me and where the cat sleeps with me. Looking back at these pictures, (all of which come courtesy of the birthday girl herself, MissNadja .Robot) I was horrified. I remember looking out the window when I first checked into the room, but this was the same room that I used the year before. Yes, it’s high up, but you don’t really think about that as a sill to ground, a to b, distance. Or at least I didn’t.
The fact that I have no memory of the actual fall is a blessing I’m sure. When I first started working for Blue Bottle, I smacked myself on the eyebrow with a run-away piston lever. It bled and it hurt and it left a scar. For months I was scared of that machine. I kept replaying over and over the lever smacking back into my face. It was bad. But here I’ve cheated death and all I can remember is a bloody nose.
The real hard thing about all this was not the injuries, but facing my loved ones. We all suffered this injury, some more acutely perhaps, but the fear and concern is a shared experience. I would rather not have to do that again.
The final verdict was that I was extremely lucky. And even more so since. I’ve had all sorts of people come to my aid. My girlfriend and both our families have been tremendously supportive, offering to help in any way possible. Likewise, my friends have come to the rescue with visits and snacks and entertainment, without which the apartment would surely become a dull purgatory. There is also the support of my friends and co-workers at Ecco Caffè in their efforts to help me get exactly what I need. There is also the crew at Blue Bottle who’s collections will make these next months so much easier. Similar collections have been taken up online.[Edit]
I will be on bed rest for the next month, after which I will hopefully have more liberty to move around.
So if there are lessons to be learned it’s these:
For all of you who do not have insurance, get it. I was hounded and hounded by my family and if it wasn’t for work providing this benefit, I don’t know what I would have done. This incredible cost would have effected me and my loved ones for years.
Do not drink yourself into a stupor. But if you do, do no try to open a window on the third floor of a building. It could have disastrous consequences.
Finally and most important, take care of yourselves. These unexpected things will come up and whatever preparations you can make will save you a lot of problems down the line.
Thanks for everthing. I’ll try not to make my blog a boring moralizing place from now on. Promise.