This brief tale is about getting up from a nasty spill, what I learned from it, and the gratitude I owe to the good samaritan couple who came to my rescue.
I was walking in the forest the other day, heading back with my dog Chip on a rather steep trail with loose, granular soil. The OOPS came about when my favorite super-light Brooks tennis shoes lost traction, I slipped, fell, and could not release the leash handle wrapped around my wrist as my 80-lb dog took no notice of me and continued heading down. Finally he looked behind and stopped, inquisitively looking at my crumpled state.
Big time OWIE.
As though it were planned, a car immediately came driving up toward me, and I motioned for it to stop. The alarmed driver and passenger scrambled out of the car, and immediately came to my assistance. Needless to say, I was a bloody mess. The couple helped me into their vehicle, and tried to get Chip inside – though he refused. The young man then offered to walk Chip back to my car at the parking lot (about a half hour’s walk from where we were), while his wife drove me back to my vehicle.
GRATITUDE. I’m still amazed at the timing of their appearance in this forest of 3,500 acres! I thanked this incredible couple for their kindness, and managed to drive back home to clean up.
I was hurting and in a really bad state. Decided to go to the doc, and luckily – no broken wrist or anything else.
So what did I learn from this?
1. If you’re on a steep section of trail or road, keep your dog’s leash just at your fingertips, not around your wrist.
2. If you know you’re heading for a fall, keep your center of gravity low and prepare to tuck in (don’t break your fall with your hand) and take a roll.
3. Carry a hiking stick and take it slow.
Lastly, I am forever grateful to the good samaritans who came to my assistance and patiently got me and Chip back to my car. Thank you for your kindness.
– Mike Kasper
(Mike Kasper is a board member of the Friends of Boggs Mountain. You’ll often see him hiking with that handsome German Shorthaired Pointer – Chip!)