Switzerland PART 6 : Most traumatic moment

Watching helplessly as a friend collapsed and died in front of me.

Well right after i had the happiest day of my trip, the next morning happened the most traumatic moment of my trip. It was 6.30am on a cold and foggy morning, nobody was standing outside. I went out to put my luggage and to say hello to my new friend Bryan, and thanked him for his life-saving jacket and gloves, without both which i wouldn’t have been able to enjoy Jungfraujoch as much as i did the previous day.

He was busy storing all our luggage into the bus before breakfast. I thought he was a bit quiet that morning, though he still said hello and hi-fived me like usual. Never would i guess that that was the last hi-five he ever gave me.

He looked tired so I asked if he was alright and he said he was OK. But i didn’t think he look OK so i stood and watched him for awhile. I still had his jacket and gloves on my arms when he collapsed inside the bus belly. By the time we called for help, he was almost not breathing. Nobody knows what medical condition he had, and though there was a doctor among us, she couldn’t do much.

It was truly unfortunate that such an untoward incident happened in a small little village like Lauterbrunnen, where there were no hospitals nor ambulance and the only mode of emergency rescue was a private doctor with a defibrillator who took 15mins to arrive. By the time he came, it was already too late and Bryan couldn’t be saved.

There were 2 things that i regretted here, after careful reflection on what happened and the sequence of events. The first thing was that on the previous day i had intended to ask him what medicine he was taking when i saw him popping pills at breakfast. It may help the doctor to know what medical condition he has during the crucial time window when he could still be saved. But i never did ask him, and i couldn’t remember why.

The second thing was that i was just standing there and staring at him for so long, when he was expressionlessly clasping and unclasping his fists on the floor; when i could have been more alert that something was wrong and acted more responsively to call for help a minute earlier. Every second counts in a moment like this, and i have wasted a precious minute standing there like a piece of wood, doing absolutely nothing and lacking any useful response. This is something that would stay with me for a long, long time. It was indeed the most traumatic experience for me in this trip. Farewell Bryan Hyett! 🙁

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