Funny story! Well, kind of…..
I fell! I fell in public! I fell on government property! In front of what felt like a bazillion people! Guys, I can’t make this stuff up. Folly must follow me! Well, me when I’m with my family. Remember how I left my mark on Waco (here)?
It was on a recent trip to the Marine Corp Recruit Depot, Parris Island, SC for my nephew’s graduation from Marine Corp boot camp where I once again made a spectacle of myself in public. I’d like to say that this is unusual, but it’s becoming all too common. I may need to change the blog name to The Dimpled Follies. While I give that a think, I’ll tell you how it happened.
First, let me say that this trip was not about me at all! To say that I am proud of my 17 year old nephew would be an understatement. Not only did he complete the toughest boot camp training of any of our military branches, but his platoon was the honor platoon. That means that his group came in first in EVERY inter-company competition. This doesn’t happen in every graduating class. He is also embarking on a career to serve our country at just 17! He’s but a baby! He’s among thousands of other mother’s babies who step up to serve for us every day. It is both inspiring and frightening at once.
On with the story. There were thousands of people on the base and around the parade grounds, which is a giant asphalt space, with bleachers lining three sides of it in the middle of the base. If you’ve ever been on a military base, you know it’s much like a mini city with buildings and streets and sidewalks.
I was one of a contingency of about 18 family members who had traveled there for my nephew’s big day. These were my peeps that I don’t get to see very often and we were together for less than 24 hours. We were high on pride and there was lots of talking and laughing and picture taking going on. Our group was slowly making our way back toward our cars following the graduation. We were all pausing to take photos and we were slowed by the crowds themselves.
At one point I saw an old man sitting on the corner of a brick wall in what could have been construed as a pornographic pose (this is the kind of stuff I see) and pointed him out to some in our group. He moved just as I was trying to sneak a photo for fun and I said, “See, that’s what happens when you’re about to make fun of someone. Jesus didn’t like it, so He moved that man.” Oh, if only that man moving was the worst karma payback for my sick little mind.
It was but a short time later and a few yards from that spot that IT happened! There in my cute Vince Camuto – Tarita booties, I stepped on what felt like something squishy. But the “squish” just kept squishing! In a split second what I thought was a squish, was a hole that swallowed my forefoot until I felt the water that had pooled in the bottom of it from the recent hurricane that had evacuated Parris Island for the first time ever.
I reached a hand toward the shoulder of my sister-in-law’s sister, who turned out of my reach because she thought I was trying to get her attention. It was too late by then. There was no recovering my balance. I. WAS. DOWN.
After a split second self-evaluation I didn’t think I was hurt badly. A scrape on my hand and maybe my elbow was all. That’s when the laughing began. The laughter began. My own! Sensing my own humor, some onlookers joined in. I think some of my family thought I was saying that I wasn’t hurt out of embarrassment. But I felt fine at the time. Adrenaline! (I felt it ALL the next day.)
It was a hole in the sidewalk. Yes, right there in the middle of a sidewalk. They had removed a bunch of those yellow pylon thingies that keep people from driving on a sidewalk. There were at least 4 holes there, and I was the ONLY person there out of thousands who stepped in one. But they hadn’t covered the holes with anything! Who does that? The government? Maybe.
Remember my earlier twisted thought to take a photo of an old man who had inadvertently taken a rather suggestive pose while trying only to find someplace to rest his weary self on the long walk back to where he had parked? Could it be that karma moved those posts? They say pride goeth before a fall. In this case, it may have been a perverted mind. 😉
At any rate, if you happen to fall , I hope you land on both feet and have a happy day!