Wanna get stuck in the lift?
I walked into a building in Nairobi's Industrial area and advanced to the lifts. The lift there is very cooperative. You press the up button and the lift door automatically opens like it was reserved for you.
'Nice,' I say to myself. But that was until I read a sign that made me laugh my head off. It read, "In case of power failure, DO NOT PANIC. Just press this button and wait for ninety seconds for power change-over."
Funny bit? There was no button! And in its place was an ugly hole.
Everyone knows that being stuck in the lift is not funny. Well the guys in that building must then have one outrageous sense of humor. There is nothing as scary as being stuck in the lift.
Of course the first five minutes are not so bad. You keep pressing the alarm bell and hope to God that it is ringing somewhere. Or wherever it is ringing, somebody can hear it. Or if somebody can hear it, then you hope and pray they actually care!
The situation definately turns into a crisis after being stuck for over five minutes. At this time, I dont want to have the people who start asking questions like, "Do you think we will be OK?" Or the more annoying, "Why do you think its taking them this long?" Or even worse, the craziest of all, "Do you think they know we are stuck in here?" For crying out loud, I AM STUCK TOO. How in blue hell am I supposed to know?
Well I dont know how you would handle the situation over time but if the situation extends to over twenty minutes, I will panic. It wont matter how many DO NOT PANIC signs are in the lift. I will surely panic. Am not clustrophobic but being stuck in something the size of a toilet suspended on a rope twenty or more storeys off the ground with people I hardly know all of who can do nothing to help isnt exactly what I would call a calm situation. The only thing you dont want to happen in such a case is for the lift to start dscending at lightning speed!
At that moment, all you can do is perform the nuclear drill. Bend over, put how head between your knees and kiss your ass goodbye!