Hilfe! Help! I didn’t think, I would need or hear this overall call for help ever in my life in earnest. Last time I used it, was in play, when a child. Everytime I lost a mock fight with my brother, my head squeezed between his forearm and his shoulder. Our concession formula used to be: “Hilfe! I can’t get any fresh air!”
Half an hour ago, sitting here in front of my laptop, checking my friend’s latest blog post, I heard the call for help. First I barely noticed, but then it filtered through my conciousness. So I got up and looked out of my open window. I heard the call again, it didn’t sound overly frightened. But all I saw was an otherwise silent neighbourhood with just one man walking his dog. Now I heard the call again. It must have come from one of the balconies on the other side of the meadow, but I couldn’t see a thing.
So I just put some slippers on and threw a jacket over my pyjamas and went outside to go see if I could find the source of the cry. When I arrived at the row of balconies, the man with the dog was just disappearing around a corner. He must have stopped and heard the call, too. So I shouted for him to come back. He identified the balcony from which the cry came but said, he didn’t have a phone with him, so there’s nothing he can do. I went there to check. The balony was not accessible, I was standing underneath it, it’s floor level with my head. Behind the balcony door, just a split open, I could see a naked foot and a leg on the floor. Belonging to an elderly woman still in her nightgown, by the looks of it. I called her, but only a weak moan was the anwer. I hadn’t brought a phone along either, but I saw a person in one of the other windows, so I motioned to this man to open it. He knew the name of the woman in question and I explained the situation and asked him to call the ambulance. The Lady must have fallen and hurt herself. While he was talking to the emergency staff, another neighbour to the other side pulled up the shutters to check, what all the commotion was about. I briefly explained the situation to her. She said, she had the phone number of the injured Lady’s daughter and would give her a call. I thanked both and explained to whoever was there on the floor, that help was on its way and the daughter was also being informed.
As I write this now, the firebrigade was already here – to open the door, I am sure – and the ambulance just went by.
Good deed done for today. And a reminder, that when in trouble, a call for help still is a good option.