quote of the day:

"get a stick and put that f******g fire out", while I continue to care for the patient.

Have been working hard since last post putting together new office complex.

Is looking better and better by the hour.

Five of us have been going 24/7, with another one who comes as high school schedule will allow.

Today I was heading downtown Ventura, in search of ornate light switch plates.

I remembered having bought some there a number of years ago.

Jump into the car and run a few errands.

Onto the northbound 101 freeway (my old ambulance grounds) heading toward California Street.

From there to The Wharf, where the train station is located since as far back as I can remember.

A fun spot for train lovers.

As one travels the several miles of distance of freeway it leads into a huge bend which we locals know as the Lemon Grove Overhead.

Too many horrible wrecks have happened there to keep count.

Is a local place of notoriety where rescue personnel are concerned.

So as we approach this blood alley I am always extra hyper alert to the traffic patterns.

Sure enough, they have become very abnormal.

Something only someone like me would know.

I look up ahead (I am passenger) and notice that there is a car pulled over to the left, and another two cars pulled over the right.

Looks like a minor fender bender, I thought aloud to myself.

Then I saw it.

Having pulled up on so many horrific auto wreck scenes, I learned over the years to look and to see fast.

And I did.

For there it was, on the asphalt, two very dark tire marks making a sudden hard right over the edge = will be a major wreck, probably with death and major bodily injury.

Something we never like to see, in spite of what ignorant persons think to the contrary.

It means that I am going to have to work extra hard, and it is going to be extra grungy.

But, I am retired from rescue business.

Not supposed to be having to do this.

I look all around and see that this has just happened and that I am first on the scene.

Then I notice something much more distressing.


Coming from down where the car is buried in brush and trees, unrecognizable, except for a bit here and there.

Remember, the last time ?

Just several months ago.

Yes, the one where the guy did this exact same thing directly above me, and burned to death, for about an hour, because nobody could get near it, up in the tree it landed in.

I am still a little shaken by that one.

So, seeing very dark skids and smoke is not something I ever want to see, and that with no help.

Pull over, quickly, I blurt out, as I can see that the people in the right lane are not going to let us in.

Now I am instantly pissed.

I climb out the window and wave to get the hell out of the way, right now.

Too busy looking at potential wreckage to notice that others need to get over there to help.

He suddenly realized what is going on and stops abruptly to let us across.

Before we are even stopped I have jumped out and am on my way over the cliff, without even a second thought for my own safety.

Rescue person, through and through.

Apparently for life.

It was so weird as I knew exactly what to do, even after having not been in the field for thirty years.

Now, let me be clear about this.

I was the boss, then.

I trained most of the people in my county.

People came from far and wide to beg to work for me.

I am not making this up, as absurd as it must sound to most.

So, as I walked down the side of the embankment, you would have thought that I owned nature, itself.

You, do this.

You, do that.

You, look in there.

Is everyone accounted for.

Are we sure.

Why are we so sure.

Have we looked in unexpected places.

Is the injured person aware of who should have been in the car.

Yes, all of that in less than a tenth of a second.

And the really weird part is that they all do what I tell them, with no questions asked and then come back to find out what to do next.

Truly amazing to watch.

But, I wouldn't want to be in your shoes if you did not.

And I think that this is so abundantly clear, somehow, that no one even thinks to question, so far as I can tell.

As I get to the bottom of the embankment I am yelling at everyone, where is the driver.

Is there a passenger.

FInally, the between the several of us we figure out that it is the girl with the little bit of blood on her arm.

No way, I am thinking to myself, as I look at the wreckage up close, peering to the now very minute passenger compartment, and then back at her.

Yes, a little tiny space, made just special for her.

Everything totally destroyed.

I looked at to the two guys next to me.

We looked at each other and just shook our heads.

Complete astonishment and disbelief written all over their's and I am sure mine also.

O.K., so now you have really got my interest.

I know that such things don't normally happen.

Some laws of physics have just been broken in a big way.

Why ?  One cannot help but ask oneself, even while realizing the very irrationality of the thoughts and premises upon which the question is based.

All I know is that I am astounded to see this person up jumping around and full of life and vigor.

Probably about as much as she ever has or ever will.

Mid-twenties, blonde, bouncy girl like only Ventura and Santa Monica can produce.

Nice to look at and be near.

But rather highly animated at the moment.

Concussion syndrome, I am thinking to myself as I watch closer to try to figure out what I am looking at and whether her life is in immediate danger from her injuries.

I am alright is not the right answer.

Yet, I keep hearing it over and over again.

You need to sit down, I advise, as she does for moment and then shoots right back up into the air again while protesting about how she is alright, and everything is just fine.

Except, where is my cell phone.

Now in a panic.

Where is my cell phone.

I start to reach for mine to offer it, suddenly realizing that what she has in mind cannot be done on mine, or at least, shouldn't be i.e. I do not want my phone to become part of a criminal investigation, which this is looking more and more like, by the moment, so far as I am concerned.

As I am taking all of this in I notice a fellow who has sort of been shadowing me.

I could tell from his demeanor that he was right at home at the bottom of an embankment while standing in a pile of nearly unrecognizable wreckage.

Strange place to feel right at home, if I may say so.

But I am also right at home, such that I thought that he must be some kind of rescue person or a student.

Seemed very calm as a noisy spectacle began to fully envelop everyone within about 50 feet.

Ain't no way I'm going in an ambulace.

Too expensive.

Last time cost me a fortune.

If I thought that these were the real reasons I would have gladly offered to pay for it myself, no questions asked, just to make sure she gets the CAT scan that she really should be getting.

But, being the devious, suspicious person which I truly am, I sensed ulterior motive.

It was right about then that I noticed the strangest thing.

There was a nice vertical slit cut in the fence, going into the parking lot at the back of a apartment complex adjacent to the freeway.

And she is going through while leaving blood everywhere she is going from rubbing her lacerated arm on the fence.

Now I am really getting worried.

We have a containment problem.

And where are the police ?

And the fire department ?

And the ambulance, for that matter.

It's been five or ten minutes and there are no siren sounds.

Busy, rainy day.

Lots of rescues going on all day, with lots of sirens, such that I really not terribly surprised.

The now very hyper girl is jumping all over the place, doing I know not what as she suddenly turns and makes a bee line for that hole in the fence, as she is now intent on finding that cell phone.

Sure enough, others offer their's and she has no interest.

She wants her phone and that's that.

So she climbs back into the wreckage and begins to rummage around in the underbrush.

Sure enough, out she pops with phone in hand.

I am nothing short of totally astounded as I hear voices behind me yelling.

They are loud, and they are scared, and they are running away.

Fire, fire, fire, they are all yelling down to us.

Oh, great, I think to myself, as I begin to recollect that smoke I saw upon arriving, which was what made me jump out of the car and down the embankment in the first place.

Well, smoke has become flame.

And where is that fire department, anyways ?

The undercarriage of the overturned Honda sedan is now becoming fully involved as people are running and yelling.

I turn to the gentleman next to me, as I am trying to contain the patient, while trying to figure out what to do and fast.

There is nothing around us to work with except for green branches.

Perfect, I thought to myself.

They will not burn. 

Get a stick and put that f*****g fire out, I calmly told my compadre as he obediently did exactly what I just told him to do.

Forget the fire that is trying to engulf us, "where is my purse" is all I can hear as I am wondering exactly where this is likely to be leading us, and that far too quickly.

I look to see how my new found friend is doing with his new and very primitive fire extinguisher.

How about dirt ?

I had to use that to put out a fully involved engine block out in the middle of the mountains out in the backroads of Highway 33 above Ojai.

I have had to use newspapers and even the clothes off of my back to extinguish freshly erupting flames.

So, green tree branches seemed very nice, at the moment.

I grabbed one to show him how it's done, as I slammed into it with vigor, almost extinguishing it on the very first strike.

He liked what he saw and joined with me as we mercilessly pounded that engine fire out.

Not wanting to be hassled by a car fire at just this moment.

After all, we've got a purse to find.

We were just looking for a supposed dead body just several minutes earlier, such that this seemed like an improvement to me.

I reached down and saw a little bag in the brush.

I picked it up and looked at it.

It looked like a stash bag or a makeup bag.