Monday, February 14, 2011

Escalators and other near death experiences

When I read my girl Monique's blog the other day, I was reminded of an experience I had that I wanted to share with you.
I have a group of friends that all met through a specific website and those of us in the area get together from time to time.  At one point during the summer of 2008, one of the ladies' that had moved away came back to visit and we decided to all do dinner in DC.  At the time, I took public transportation to work, so I decided to just hop on the metro into DC and one of my friends would drop me off home afterwards.  The day prior, I was chatting with my boyfriend and casually mentioned the restaurant we were going to and he said "Oh, that's off Dupont Circle.  You're going to trip off of that escalator (he knows I don't like them), it's one of the longest ones in the metro system."  (I've since googled it and found that it's actually the 6th longest one...but who's counting?)  I cringed and mentioned again how much I hate escalators and we moved onto another subject.
The day of the meet and greet arrives and before I left work, I texted my girl that was driving and told her I was about to hop on the metro and head to DC.  She said "See you in a few" or something like that.  The train ride was uneventful and I arrived at the Dupont Circle Metro station in record time.  Then came a glitch.  When I went to exit the station, I realized that all the escalators were broken.  Damn.  I looked up at the people lugging their bags up the longest escalator I'D ever seen and then looked left to the elevators.  In line for the elevators were old people, handicapped people, people with strollers and REALLY fat people.  Clearly, I don't consider myself REALLY fat, only kind of fat.  :-/  I move pretty good for a big girl, I'll take the escalators.
About 1/3 of the way up, I realized I was in trouble.  My pride wouldn't let me stop, making the people behind me go around, so I kept going.  It was hot.  I started wheezing.  I should probably mention right now that sometime in 2007-08, I was diagnosed with "exertion-induced asthma", but since I didn't really exert myself on a daily basis any more than necessary, I never carried my inhaler with me.  It was at a drawer...under some papers.  I can tell you exactly what went through my mind as I climbed step by agonizing step.
"Well M knows I'm coming, if I don't show up, she'll know something is wrong."
"I think L has my grandmother's phone number, so if they can't find me, L will know how to contact my family...I think"
"If I fall, I'm going to bowl all of these people behind me out of the way like bowling pins...and I'll be embarrassed"
"Just don't look up, keep stepping"
At some point (probably only halfway there) I had to stop.  I gripped onto the side for dear life and just stood there while people stepped around me.  I saw the disgust in their faces, but they were puffing and panting too so I didn't feel so bad.  I think I might have locked my knees while I stood there because all of a sudden, I felt really dizzy.  My eyes started crossing.  My heart was pounding.  My brain was jumping around like "IBTCH...what is WRONG with you?"  Well not really, but my head was throbbing.  Finally, only by the grace of God, I reached the top.  Like my Grandmother says, "I couldn't go another futha..."  So I stopped and tried to get my bearings.  My vision was blurry and I was weak in the knees.  I ended up holding on to a newspaper stand to get myself together.  Then I realized, I didn't know which way I was going.  I finally asked a FedEx or UPS guy who was parked at the light waiting, if he knew where the restaurant was, and he pointed the way.  I walked for seemingly another 5 miles to get there.  I was wheezing and dizzy and just knew that I would pass out at any second, but I was determined to just GET there.  I get there and as soon as I walked in, the group exclaimed "HEYYYYY!!!!"  I waived them ALL off and was like "I can't..." and went to the bathroom to get myself together.  About 15 minutes later, when I could talk, I finally told them what happened.  Since I was no longer in danger, I was able to laugh about it.  They thought it was pretty funny.  Clearly, when I said "I thought I was gonna DIE!" they thought I was exaggerating.  No.  I literally thought there were going to have to notify my next of kin that day. 
I was less mortified when 2 of the other party members came in behind me and recounted a similar story.  I couldn't feel too bad though, one of them was pregnant, and the other one is a grandmother.  My (then) 20-something, able-bodied self should have been able to keep up.  SMH
Anyway, that was my near-death experience.  It's really a shame that as I sit here and type this story to you that I'm probably in worse shape than I was then.  No, let me not kid myself, I'm DEFINITELY in worse shape than I was then. 


  1. I still giggle at the church finger and you waving them off.

    I think everyone should share a Near Death Experience story!

  2. Thanks for the story! I could feel your pain while reading it and sill got a great laugh in! And thanks for the input the other day! I think once I become more used to blogging and meet more people on here it could be extremely beneficial!
    Have a good day :)

  3. WOW I SOOOO Needed a good story like this today. You made me smile, and for that I am greatful.... (And greatful that you made it up that darn thing! LOL)

  4. *waves excitedly @ Tamara!* You are quite welcome! I've already been to your blog. :)

    Hi Chubee, thanks for visiting! I'm glad I could make you smile. I definitely chuckle myself when I think about, but it definitely wasn't a laughing matter then, lol.

  5. LOL thanks for the story! And so glad you survived that crazy ass escalator so I can read more of ur funny blogs :)