Friday, July 01, 2011

My First Kiss with Death

Three mornings I woke up thanking god that I am alive. And three nights I spent sleeplessly along with my wife, feverishly fighting the echo of the boulders rumbling down on to my car with dark empty cliff below it. It was hands of god that pulled me across, or I would have dragged along my friends down the cliff never to be found in one piece.
It was the night of 27th June, my team on election duty didn't want to spent another night in Gogona, so we had to pack out bags after the poll was over. It was raining heavy and we were carefully heading home. After meeting other teams at Nobding I was relaxed and moved at my own safe pace. But there is no absolute formula to drive safe when it rains. 
When I entered the huge turn below Nobding, where road widening works are going on during the day, I saw a boulder falling about a foot away followed by rumbling sound of bigger boulder. In fraction of a second I heard several thuds on my car. I don't know what an experienced driver would do- I didn't have time to think anyway. I had a young lady colleague behind me and a young police chumma in passenger seat- their lives were in my hand. 
I could hear the bang, bang of rock and scream of my friend from behind, just then a bounder as big as my head teared through my windshield and landed near my right foot (only god can explain how it didn't hit me at all). Now, I could see nothing in front with the windshield already blurred by cracks. All the while I haven't stopped, I sped across with all my focus on the road, and after I couldn't see anymore from the windshield I opened my window and project my head out to see the road, until we reached a safe place. If I had panicked a little bit, you would have seen me on BBS Headlines. 
The boulder came in through the windshield 

It was dark and raining, we were still within the huge curve, which means we weren't fully safe. So I rushed to remove the broken glass using the sharp boulder which was sitting at my feet- damn, it wasn't that easy. The broken glass had turned elastic. I asked the police's SLR and used the butt of the Rifle to make a hole for me to see through. 

Thank god, other boulders hit the body!
While I drove, my friend contacted our presiding officer who was way ahead of us, only to find his phone was dead. Then we called our Returning Officer to find a lady answering us, who was not in the mood to take anything seriously. Knowing there was no help we could call for we continued on our own for next 40 km home. 
I was freezing in my wet gho with rain hitting my face like a knife, and occasionally my vision blurred. I tried to keep my eyes open but the sharp pain in there won't let me, the two of them can't drive. Only after passing Rajona, the rain stopped and we had a calm three km journey until we reached RO's office.
At midnight I was taken to hospital to clean glass powder from my face and neck, and only then I fearfully realized that I nearly risked my eyesight by driving after the accident. It wasn't rain that pricked my eyes all the while but flying glass pieces. That night they removed three glass pieces from my eyes and asked me to go for further check up, because they didn't have the tech to remove smaller pieces- I am yet to go!
For now I need enough time to thank god. That's my first kiss with death and I must say it taste awful.

22 comments:

  1. That was a terrifying experience! The roads between Nobding and Lower sha have got lots of sharp turns and its always risky if the speed is not under control. And particularly during the monsoon season, many landslide and slides occur causing more threat. This road widening project might have made the soil more fragile, so its really gonna be risky driving during rainy season and that too in the evenings.

    Seeing the photo, I was really scared, but thanks to God and your luck that despite boulder hitting just an inch away from your head, you escaped unhurt. That was the only jolly good news. Your car is physically impaired. So sorry. Any ways, be cautious while driving in the rain sir. Wishing a speedy recovery from the horror of deathly kiss. Good days ahead.

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  2. OMG that was a close encounter with death and a narrow escape too. The pic is so terrifying,and the mere thought of the glass powder inside your eyes is harrowing... good luck for your check up...

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  3. that was really really close.....hope everything will be fine when you check up....take care sir...and thank lam kenchosum for letting you survive such experience.

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  4. Hey Passu, that accident was real terrifying, but u escaped. Thank God! But best of luck in your further treatment.

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  5. Hi Passu,
    It was indeed a narrow escape. The glasses in your eyes is really horrifying. I hope doctors could see and remove it.
    I should applaud you for finding courage to drive even after the close encounter with death. Had it been me, I would have surely veered off the road panic stricken.
    Wishing you a speedy recovery.

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  6. OMG, it is really terryfying. Thank God for you escaped umharmed except for your eys which is really frightening to hear about. Wish you good luck in treating it further. Prompt treatment would be good sir or it may get complicated. Not to forget heroism you displayed that moment. Had it not been for your bravery and sheer heroism to drive further after the boulder struck your car, there is no question what could have happened. Sorry to learn about this. Your car is badly damaged. Hope your treatment will go fine sir. Wish u happy days ahead...

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  7. Yalama...I can't believe it. And so sorry I am seeing this post only now. But it was a miracle indeed. So happy that nothing serious had happened to you. Be happy that you were so lucky and it is no time for humor. Will give you a call shortly. Prayers.

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  8. This is really bad to hear sir. Thank god, you were lucky enough to have made through the devil's situation. I hope those glass pieces, if there were some left inside, are cleaned up by now. Till then take care...!

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  9. OMG! Passu... That was really close...Thank god you are alrite... And it was very brave of you to drive to your destination ... It might have been a Herculean task with the glass pieces in your eyes and all...!

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  10. I see that you posted this article yesterday and you make no mention of any damage to your eyes. This means that there are no glass pcs. left in your eyes. That is good.

    You have been extremely lucky to have escaped unscathed. God surely intends that you have many years of gardening :)

    Take care

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  11. Dear, Leoparsica,Rekkha Monger,Sogyel Tobgyel, Rikku,Sangay,Langa Tenzin,Penstar,Denduub Tshering,Sangye,and Yeshey,
    Thank you for letting me know that you are there, and making me feel so good. I think there is no more glass powder in my eyes, it feels absolutely fine now.

    Actually there are lots of people accountable but since I came out alive I have nothing to say- ha ha ha in case I didn't make it, how would I say?

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  12. Dear Sir, That was close. Seems like 27th of June was a bad day for both of us. My work has been halted ever since that day and i will tell you more about that la.

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  14. Sir, Life is pretty even with those shattered glass because you are still breathing and this is all we care about. I hope by now you have recovered fully and safely. Take care sir.

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  15. @Dawa Knight, I would like to to know what happened to your work...
    @Yeesi7, who right...from that day one I found joy in just being able to breath... such moments in life-if at all we survive- teaches us to reflect on our life and look deep inside ourselves. Car could be repaired, thank god, he spared the one who couldn't be repaired!

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  16. There were so many friends and relatives who called me to ask, "Are you ok?"... Thank you so much, it touched me deep. I wasn't so OK but each call made me ok'er. Those Nu.1 calls made a huge impact on my sentiments.
    Thanks Ngawang, Dechen, Kailash, Sonam Pelden, and son Jigme...

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  17. I'm glad to hear you're okay PaSsu. I remember how scary it can be driving on the roads in Bhutan - just from the heights. I don't think I could have driven again after your experience.

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  18. Thank you Murray, I am find and my car is back on road too. In the dark I couldn't see that height of the cliff I was driving over, which helped my focus on the road despite shooting boulders.

    Any chance of returning to Bhutan do let me know, I need you to sign the my copy of your "Dragon Bones"

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  19. This is a very dramatic story! I'm so glad you're safe and well and lived to tell it. All the best to you and your family.

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  20. Thank you linda, it's so thoughtful of you. I am very happy have lived to tell the story. Best wishes to your family too. Congratulate Phuba on his successful completion of the painting of Buddha.

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  21. Awful indeed! I'm happy that you and your friends are safe. Best wishes for your quick recovery from that trauma..take care.

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  22. Qinza, thanks. I have forgiven the rock and forgotten it too. Because it didn't kill me it only made me better...

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