by Ernnabelle Ting (P5 2022)
The teacher droned on for the last thirty minutes of class. When we were finally dismissed, the horde of students streamed out of the classrooms. It was another boring day after school. I dragged my feet home as I sighed. Yet another uneventful day, I thought. Little did I know that the day would take a turn for the worse…
The lift lobby of my flat was old and dirty. The walls, which were painted white, had been stained over many years. I reached my flat’s lobby, and pressed the lift button and went in. Just then, Mrs Lim, my elderly neighbour, hobbled in. She looked ancient with tissue paper white hair, wearing a faded old-fashioned dress. I held the lift door open, flashing a cordial smile, and politely greeted her. I asked her how she felt that day and punched the buttons. She thanked me for being so polite, then we were silent for the rest of the ride.
The lift accelerated. There were loud clanking sounds here and there while the lift grew slower and slower. My heart palpitated hard and fast as my hands turned cold and clammy, Unfortunately, the lift came to an abrupt stop at the fifth floor. I pressed the buttons vigorously several times, but it was to no avail. The lights on the buttons had gone out. It soon dawned on me that we were trapped. An icy fear crept up my spine. Mrs Lim was hysterical.
“We will never get out!” she wailed with her face pallid. It had become a colourless mask. I had no time to lose. I pressed the bell in the lift immediately. The sound was surely deafening, but what other choice did I have? Mrs Lim burst into tears. I tried my very best to console her, telling her that everything would be all right and that we needed to find out how to get out safely. Mrs Lim began having trouble breathing, and I immediately helped her sit down and loosened her collar.
Several minutes passed, but no help came. The air-conditioning had died out, and the lift became really stuffy. We were sweating buckets. We tried to ring the emergency alarm again. Every second that passed was agonising.
“Heeelllppp!!!” I screamed at the top of my lungs, trying to get someone’s attention. A wave of despair washed over me. I felt like we would never make it. In one last effort, I tried banging on the doors. The next few minutes felt like hours as we waited in complete silence.
Bang! My hopes were lifted when I heard the firefighters on the other side of the lift door. Help was finally here! The brave firefighters cranked the doors open using their tools. It felt like a hundred pound weight was lifted off me, and Mrs Lim thanked the heavens that someone had come to our rescue. I heaved a sigh of relief when the doors were finally opened and all this drama was over. The firefighters praised me for helping Mrs Lim. My cheeks were flushed, and I returned their praise with gratitude. Mrs Lim thanked me profusely and even gave me a hug.
As I recalled the day’s events, I was proud of myself for consoling Mrs Lim and keeping calm during an emergency. I learnt from this incident that instead of being hysterical, we should keep calm and wait for help to arrive.