It was a sunny early afternoon in Ubud, Bali. My last day on the beautiful island before I had to fly home to California…and two days before the airport would have to close due to a volcanic eruption. My story has nothing to do with the volcano, but I digress.
We were in Bali to celebrate my best friend’s 24th birthday and everyone was down to ride ATVs as our last excursion. By everyone I mean everyone but me. No part of me wanted to get on an ATV but after some peer pressure from the manager and an offer of a 50% discount I couldn’t say no. I should have but I couldn’t.
It started well, as these things usually do. I met our guide and we all had a few laughs before he let me know he would be in control of the ATV for the journey. We all joked about the boots and the helmets and began our journey. I soon realized my fears were none of his concern. As we zigzagged on the trail close to what seemed like the edge of a cliff, I reached for the handlebar and turned us in the safe direction. While my instructor jumped safely off of the ATV onto his feet I found myself under the ATV.
As my friends lifted the ATV off of me I attempted to stand and quickly realized I couldn’t. I was frozen. You know that fight, flight, freeze thing-I’m a freezer. I knew if I moved my arm wasn’t coming with me the way that it was meant to so I laid there. Until an Australian woman, who was in the group behind us, ran over and held my shoulder in place. She held it as I walked to the nearest bench and she continued to hold it for as long as she could until her group needed to leave. I don’t know that woman’s name and I don’t know what I would have done without her. Thank you to that woman.
We waited, for what felt like hours, for the ambulance. After driving for what also felt like hours, we finally made it to the hospital. The doctor quickly put to sleep and put back together again.
I had one more afternoon in Bali so I made the most of it by visiting the Sacred Monkey Forest. I almost lived my Eat, Pray, Love dream. Could I have had a love affair in Bali had it not been for that ATV…I guess we’ll never know.