May 12, 2008
This week, we have a story written by Joyce Baker, from Bedford-Sackville, Nova Scotia. Joyce is enrolled in literacy classes at the Bedford Sackville Literacy Network (BSLN).
I am alone in an elevator with a man when suddenly the elevator gets stuck! I realize immediately that this person is getting uncomfortable: he is starting to sweat and fidget. It is very quiet. I ask him if he is OK and he looks at me suspiciously, as if I am to blame for the elevator stopping. So before he can reply I say it will be all right, someone will fix the elevator and we will be out soon. I tell him to calm down and try to breathe slow and easy. He lashes out at me saying, "Why did you cause the elevator to stop? Start it up right now or you will be sorry." I can tell he is getting agitated and may become aggressive. He is bigger and stronger than I am. Will he try to choke me or hit me? I try and show him I am not afraid. I look him straight in the eye and say, "It’s OK, just calm down. I will not hurt you. I will help us both to get out of here. Now let's think of how we're going to do that."
I see a panel of some kind and there is a screw in the centre. "Look, what's this? Perhaps this will help us to escape!" I can see he is focusing on something besides wanting to kill me, a good sign, I think to myself. I find a nail file in my purse and get him.
[This story was taken with permission, from the Bedford Sackville Literacy Network (BSLN) website, under Learner Stories.]