A few days ago I was reading a post on a forum, and a gentleman described the accident that he’d had a while back.
He was working on his vehicle, and trying to break the pinion nut loose – but he put a bit too much oomph into it, and the next thing he knew he was in a hospital. Seems when he “oomphed” the nut, he also managed to knock the vehicle off the jack stands, and it sounds like the third member was directly over his chest.
Massive trauma, and he’s very lucky to be alive. Especially since he was clinically dead for quite a while.
That’s the thing that they don’t tell you about jack stands – even though they’re supposed to be a safe, static mode of supporting heavy things, if you really look at them they’re not that stable.
So if I get under a truck, like the Toyota I’m working on now, I crib up to the frame on several points, giving me extra, stable support in case the stands fail. It’s still not ideal, but the only things I can really think of as being ideal are either a pit (don’t have one, and not going to dig one), or a lift (don’t have one, and not going to buy one).
So it’s jacks, stands, and cribbing for me, for the foreseeable future.
I still can’t get over how…well, basically it was amazingly elegant and gentle? Not the word I’m looking for, but it’ll come to me.
Anyway, can’t get over how Tamurand died.
She had calmed down from her exertion, and was laying peacefully. There was a Chihuahua that was being walked outside the windows, and she perked up when she saw that.
Ears went up, eyebrows raised, and that distinctive furrowed Ridgeback brow appeared. Pure focus on the other dog. Once the dog passed the window, then she laid her head back down.
I was down on the ground by her, stroking that soft fur, couple of scratches behind the ears.
“Good girl Tam, you’re the best Ridgeback in the world…good girl”, I spoke quietly, close to her ear.
She lifted her head, and raised it high, I scratched under her chin….ah, bliss.
The Propafol went in, rapidly. Must have hurt a bit because she drew her leg back. Vet had to hold it.
Too late to stop….but goddamit I wanted to. Just a few more lifetimes, just a few more seconds, just…..
Within seconds her head became heavy, and she laid it down. A few more seconds, and her breathing slowed, and she relaxed even more.
She had adopted that classic Greyhound pose when laying down – chest on ground, forelegs straight out, left paw over right paw. Her head came to rest on her right leg, and off to the right side, just a little bit.
The vet immediately administered the Pentobarbitol, and just like that…maybe ten seconds…Tamurand was gone.
I had been stroking her head and body while this was going on, and as her head went down on the ground for the last time, I held my hand lightly around and in front of her muzzle. I wanted her to go on that final trip – going with the scent of her pack, and humans fresh to her.
The vet put the stethoscope to her chest wall, and confirmed that, yes, she was gone.
But how beautiful she looked, laying there! Her eyes were partly open, still clear. She looked just like she was resting, like she used to look on our back porch, or inside on the tile floor or her bed. Resting, but alert – always watching.
So now I’m a fat old guy, writing to no one…and weeping again.