I’m high enough up that if I let go and fall I will be hurt, probably killed.
This is folly.
I look down and estimate the fall would be about 30m.
I look above and realize that it’s still a long way to the top.
I’m frozen with fear. I’m not going to make it.
Cramps curl my fingers.
Numbness spreads outwards from my toes.
My friend, Peter Parker, talked me into this. Says he does it whenever he comes to Toronto.
“Piece of cake,” he says, “and the views are spectacular. ‘Specially at night.”
I’m not afraid of heights but I am beginning to understand my own limitations.
A ruckus below demands my attention and I watch, from the corner of my eye, as the fire brigade maneuvers a hook and ladder truck close.
Someone is shouting something through a bullhorn but I can’t make it out.
A crowd manifests from the city streets and alleys to gawk. They stare.
My rescuer arrives silently atop a slowly rising ladder,
“You OK, buddy?” he asks.
Unable to answer, I cling tightly; stubbornly refusing to surrender the precious purchase I have achieved as he runs a strap around my chest.
I don’t want to let go but reason tells me I’m safe.
Still he has to pry my fingers loose before he can pull me to his ladder.
I feel like a cat that’s been stuck in a tree.
Curse you Spiderman.