Five minutes after I took this shot I made the biggest mistake of my life. On a hike in Joshua Tree National Park I scrambled over a high boulder stack, slipped off and fell into a canyon, shattering my pelvis on a rock. The pain (and the sound) was horrifying.
Then the immediate terror of realising I couldn’t move, not even to sit up. My left ankle was very badly sprained. I couldn’t get a signal on my phone. And nobody knew I was there. I’d made the cardinal sin of not sharing my plans and return ETA. Nobody would notice me not returning home.
All I could do was lie where I’d fallen, scream for help, and try to protect myself as best I could from the desert heat. I ran out of water so I drank urine. I fashioned a curtain from a stick and a plastic bag and held it between my face and the scorching sun for hours on end. I decided I just needed to stay alive long enough be found. I tried not to lose hope. Admittedly, that was challenging at times.
After four long days and three long nights being splayed broken on the desert floor, friends noticed I was unusually incommunicado and sensed something was up. They called some neighbours who found my car at the trailhead. A few hours later I was rescued by helicopter search crew and taken to hospital.
I’m going to be OK.
Immeasurable thanks from the bottom of my heart to @wandering_nat_ @loulitrenta, Eric and Manny at the CHP, MercyAir18, Mike and everyone on the search & rescue team, the nurses at Desert Regional Medical Centre and everyone who has given me love and support. If you don’t like sentimental posts you’re in the wrong place, because matey, I’m a glowing ball of love and gratitude. I am bloody well alive.