(One hour of sleep last night – many hours of staring at the ceiling. Now it feels like my right eye is trying to grind itself out of the socket).
If my crewmate were a bit crueller you'd now be looking at a picture of me half hanging out of a window.
It was one of our usual calls, a 'Nan down!', otherwise known as a 'collapse behind locked doors'. Some elderly person has a fall, normally during the night, and is unable to get themselves up. Sometimes they are found by carers, sometimes they hit their community alarm. In this case it had taken her ten hours to manage to crawl to the telephone.
We arrived at the same time as the police. Our patient had already told Control that we would have to break the door down. The police have a ram they can use to smash down a door, so they are tasked to these calls as soon as we know it might be needed.
Looking through the letterbox I could see our patient sitting on the floor in the hallway. She didn't seem hurt at all, and after having a shouted discussion with her, she let if be known that breaking in would be the only way to reach her.
The door was secured with two locks, two bolts and a chain. It wasn't going to be opened with my size twelve boot. The police suggested getting the ram from their station but I had a better idea. Smash the glass window in the door and climb through. It would be a lot less damage and would be easier and cheaper to repair.
Out came 'Vera', my favoured pair of trauma shears and I made short work of the glass. As the window was around five foot off the floor I used our carry-chair as a stool to climb up to it. Then I put my hi-vis jacket down as protection against any small bits of of glass left in the frame and heaved by bulk through the hole.
This worked well and I got all my body through.
Apart from my right leg, which dangled half in and half out. I was stuck.
Two young lads who were watching from the street started laughing. My crewmate forgot to get some mobile phone snaps and I wondered how far apart my legs could go.
Thankfully I managed to free myself while retaining the ability to have children.
I'm a real child sometimes – I love the chance to climb through a window, or over a wall, or hop over a gate.
Luckily our patient wasn't hurt too badly – she had a bump on the head and pain in her knees, so we would be taking her to hospital for further assessment.
To be continued…