The girl who promised to love, honor, and complain about my driving read the story of the ‘victim’ in the Anderson Memorial Hospital Emergency Room and reminds that funny stories coming out of a very serious place just are not that unusual.
She is also well aware that I have always said if my car was found, wrecked and abandoned anywhere near the town of Belton that I could probably be found nearby, hiding behind and desperately holding onto a pine tree.
We did say that, one or several hundred times. I wasn’t serious, but it stemmed from an early evening incident at the Anderson ER. I was going to college and working my usual 3:30 to midnight shift, but taking a break and visiting the ER to spend time with the little blonde x-ray student I would later talk into becoming my bride.
It was a quiet night, until suddenly the sounds of sirens were blaring.
Not just one but two ambulances were approaching, accompanied by at least a half-dozen privately owned vehicles driven by Rescue Squad volunteers…
Diane and I, along with practically everyone else who worked in the ER were gathering at the door to see what would be unveiling.
As soon as the ambulance stopped, the volunteers swarmed the back door. The door opened, and a lot of folks grabbed at the stretcher.
Unfortunately, everyone who grabbed stretcher grabbed the same side, so when the stretcher cleared the rear of the vehicle, the unsupported side headed toward the asphalt, taking the strapped-down ‘victim’ along for the ride.
The volunteers quickly snatched the stretcher back up, and everyone headed for the door. Once inside, the victim, complete with new blood-oozing wounds, started begging the doctor, “Please, Oh Please, keep then away from me. I’d do anything. I just want to be away from them!”
The story quickly emerged. The Rescue volunteers were having a meeting, outside, on the square, and the ‘victim’ was leaving a local watering hole and walking the two blocks to his home.
But he had two or maybe seven or eight too many adult beverages and he lost his balance and fell.
Within sight of the Rescue volunteers’ meeting.
Although he kept insisting he was not hurt, that he had simply tripped and wanted to go on home, he had become the answer to the standard Rescue volunteer’s prayer, which goes, “Lord, we having a meeting here, and if you could would you please send us a victim?”
And there he was. Despite his protests of being uninjured and just wanting to go on home, he found himself leading a motorcade, with sirens blasting, straight toward the nearest ER.
Then came the small incident where he and his stretcher were dropped.
By now he really was injured, just not enough to be admitted.
The ER workers convinced the Rescue volunteers they had done the right thing, that the victim was going to be treated, and it was now save for the volunteers to go back to the square to continue their meeting.
My true love and I had seen the whole ER parking lot scene, and watched as the ‘saviors’ rode off into the night while the victim was on the phone, asking a relative to come get him, and trying not to explain how he managed to end up in the ER from two blocks from home.
That’s when I whispered to her, “Darlin’, if they ever find my car abandoned after a wreck anywhere near there, tell them I will be hiding in the woods hugging a tree until the Rescue volunteers give up and go home.”