We’d gone walking with our Rando del’Aubo friends, near Nébias again. We’d yomped up a mountainside, 2 hours of it, and were looking forward to lunch in – oooh, maybe 10 minutes. That’s when Micheline fell over a tree root.
It was bad. Very bad. Broken ankle? Knee? We still don’t know. Anny, who has GPS, ran off to find some kind of reception for her mobile, so she could ring emergency services, and give them our exact reference.
Pretty quickly, it became exciting. We were fairly inaccessible, though not as badly so as we might have been, considering we were almost at the top of a (smallish) mountain, because there was, for the first time that morning, open land nearby. A bright red ambulance service 4×4 came into view, then an ambulance, tossing about on the rutted track. The sapeurs pompiers had to walk down into the woods, carrying all their equipment and a stretcher, to see Micheline, who was now in quite a lot of pain. Then – wow! A helicopter air ambulance hovered overhead, looking for a landing spot.
The pictures show the efficient and organised crew (11 of them, sapeurs pompiers, nurses, pilot) doing what they had to do in muddy, dirty conditions to get Micheline sedated and sorted and ready to be air-lifted to Carcassonne Hospital. They don’t show the 4×4 being ignominiously towed out of the mud by a local farmer.
Despite our compassion for Micheline and the acute pain and discomfort she was in, we were quietly excited to be part of such a drama, the first apparently, in Rando del’Aubo’s long history of weekend walks. No news from Micheline yet: but she won’t be at work tomorrow.