Saturday, 29 September 2007

Reason's Gone...Damage Stays

An eerie screetch...laughter ceases...a scream...a crying child...headlights...horns....
Life in slow motion.

There lays a woman in a heap at the side of the road, her baby in the middle of the highway...a car speeds off.

I run...we run into traffic, traffic which continues to race by, slowing in the slightest.

Another cry of pain turns the stomach as we dart across the 3 laned highway.

The woman stirs, a dim hope.

The baby stirs as cars pass by him closely...prayers.

More cars, I slam their trucks as they pass...anger.

In Egypt crosswalks are non-exsistant, religion is law, and life just is not fair.

Crossing streets here is gambling with your life, car rarely slow, traffic swerves around those who drive with caution and lanes are non-exsistant.
A careful eye and some blissful ignorance allows forgieners to cross the congested streets and the occasional close call gives an added thrill.
Egyptians cross the street to get to the other side, simple.
They know the risks of taking your time, they've experianced the real danger of a misjudged step, this is their life and it's not a game.
44 people die for every 100,000 KM driven in Egypt, and when an estimate 80.5 Million people live in Egypt with roughly a third of them being drivers...statistics scare me.

The night is dark, there are few headlights.
She is dressed in a full veil, view restricted, black as the night...She takes that step.

Religion is law here,
It dictates everything from how time is spent to attire.

The black figure flies over the hood, and rolls off the windshield and comes to rest in a black rumbled heap.

A child, dressed in red, thrown into tired, hectic traffic.

A car speeds away...

Here lies a woman and a child, faced with the very real danger of death.

Still not a sound from the child, though he stirs.

We do what comes instictively...
Some run away, while others run to, or stand strong and pray.

I pluck the child from the road, while two other interns block traffic.
I hold the child close to my chest as tears well in our eyes,

Suddenly there comes a cry from his mouth, a realization that not all is well...shock has worn off as quickly as it set in.

I check him quickly from broken bones, torn skin or bruises...nothing.

Mircles happen every day, I have witnessed this.

*God is good!*

The crowd around the woman is large now, many yell in Arabic and hustle about...I don't understand.
Cell is on it's way.

I walk with the child in my arms down the center divider...away from the chaos, he doesn't need to see or hear this.

He trembles as I bounce him in my arms, I whisper.

I look up to the side of the street...a dozen Christians pray.

*God is merciful.*

Minutes go by...

A man comes and places his hand on my shoulder, his face is soft.
He says something in Arabic, and motions to the child.
Sometimes don't need a translation, I hand the child off to him with a quick whisper.

I move towards the woman, she lay moaning, trying to right herself, others kneel beside her.

I take up spot and stand directing traffic with the others,

The crowd grows, traffic grinds to a's time to go.

We move through the traffic towards our friends on the sidewalk,

Hugs, tears and encouragements...

We walk to some taxis, and drive away.

An ambulance races past us.

More prayers....

A driver now sits at home, his car parked on the street below his flat...damaged, a haunting reminder.

He sits up tonight, He doesn't know the outcome of the accident, he doesn't know that the child lived, he doesn't know that the woman never got up again under her own weight.
His life is changed...He didn't stop.