He could’ve died…
I wanted to write about this yesterday but I didn’t get a chance to after this incident. I had just gotten off work and had arrived in Central. It was about 5pm. When I was heading out of the MTR, I was minding my own business with my earphones on. Suddenly I looked up towards the escalators and saw a head fall and disappear in the blink of an eye. First reaction, I took off one side of my ear phones and ran towards the escalators.
“He’s drunk he’s drunk. Are you okay?” I hear two ladies saying in Cantonese. One was an elder lady above 60 and the other in her 40s. I ran up the escalators as fast as I could and said I’m here. Next to them was a Caucasian man, perhaps in his 50s who had fallen face first downwards towards the bottom of the escalator that was going upwards. Thankfully, he had used his hands as protection, but his hands were bleeding from the metal corners. The younger lady and I helped him up and he was thankful. Although he was clearly wasted with a distinct alcoholic odor surrounding him.
As he got up holding my hand on one side, I asked: “A little too much to drink?” He avoided my eyes, gave out a deep sigh and dropped his head on my shoulder. I knew to ask nothing more. I looked at his hands that were holding mine, they were bleeding and looked painful- but I’m sure he felt nothing. I looked at his stain fill-ed shirt and jeans that were torn at the knees. He looked broken, physically and mentally.
My heart was beating as if I had just ran a marathon. Sure, some might say this happens all the time in Lan Kwai Fong and Soho but nevertheless, it seemed different when anything could have happened to him. So many thoughts were spinning in my head, did he lose his job? Did he lose his family? Was he celebrating Spain’s victory in the world cup? I guess I’ll never know and it’s not my place to know either. Sometimes all you can do lend him a hand and a shoulder for the time being.
Here’s the strange coincidence that I believe God had planned. When this whole incident happened, the song “Tonight I wanna Cry” by Keith Urban had just started playing. As I lifted him up to his feet, the chorus of the song sang:
I’ve never been the kind to ever let my feelings show
And I thought that bein’ strong meant never losin’ your self-control
But I’m just drunk enough to let go of my pain
To hell with my pride, let it fall like rain
From my eyes
Tonight I wanna cry
He stood there for a while after getting off the escalators, then slowly stumbled away. I watched him for a few seconds unsure of what to do, then decided to go on with my day. As I walked away, the song continued playing. I kept wondering whether I should’ve got him some water, or sat down to talk to him but by that time, the security guards had already gotten a hold of him.
I guess I did all I could, and I’ll let God do the rest.