I had an odd experience the other day.

I am on the road this week for work. My flight on the way to Wilmington transferred in Atlanta. The Atlanta airport has four terminals that are joined by a tram system. You need to take a long escalator down to the tram level. I went down and hopped on the tram to head to my connecting terminal. (I also tried to stand on the tram without holding on to the grab bar. I failed and jammed my finger as I grabbed for it when the tram took off at 125 MPH.)

My stop was a popular terminal and a large group of travelers got off the tram and headed for the escalator. It was immediately apparent that something was not right. People were bunched up at the bottom. Ah, the escalator was not working and people were climbing it like stairs. I, along with the other schmucks, started hoofing up the awkward metal steps.

It was a long trek and I started to get a weird 9/11 feeling. It was creepy. Technology had failed. I was stuck in a social group of others in a similar position. The woman in front of me was struggling in heels. She had asthma or lung cancer or was just lazy, but she was laboring taking one step at a time. In a different situation, I could have carried her like hero or thrown her over the rail like a survivalist.

And then we were at the top. Several people were catching their breath. Others ran off to make up for lost time. I had 60 minutes to kill so I walked. (Actually it was 180 minutes, my flight was delayed.)

Since then on the jobsite, I’ve almost had my fingers crushed, nearly been decapitated by a falling loading dock door and just about run over by a forklift. But as I sit here in the hotel room thinking of such things, the memory of climbing the escalator keeps nudging my brain. It’s fading though.

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