Saturday, April 25, 2009

Cave Hill Rescue

Cave Hill Rescue, originally uploaded by peripathetic.

My feet hurt. Giles was out of breath. So we stepped to the side of the steep path, through the soft, springy mixture of soil and dry leaves and wild garlic.

The helicopter, which had been hovering over this area since we had set out from Giles's front door, made it troublesome to hear sounds at a distance, and it soon emerged that the woman who appeared to sit in the gentle valley below the path was yelling for our attention. She had fallen from far above; she needed help; she had called for the helicopter; could we help?

Giles got his phone out and wandered uphill to call mountain rescue. I stayed close to the woman and waved and waved, with big sweeping gestures, at the helicopter, which moved more closely overhead.

Soon Giles was back, with a policeman in tow. And what was her name? Louise, she said. She was very sorry - she had been beaten black and blue since she was six - she needed a light - were we going to arrest her? She had fallen. Honest. Not a one of them cared. Not a one. She was serving her suspended sentence, too, and being good. She couldn't walk. She needed help.

And the policeman and I helped her up, his radio burbled for a while below his tired sunlit face, and he helped her away as the helicopter, above, gradually moved downhill.

We gradually moved uphill towards the summit.

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