It was the beginning of summer 96, excitement overwhelmed me, like I was a tiny little kid, I couldn’t wait for our summer holiday in Greece. Soon enough, it was time for my parents and my boyfriend (of that time) to start packing and head off to the airport. , It was a happier time of my life, all of us being together made a big change too. If only I knew what was about to happen 4 days into, what was supposed to be a great family holiday. We arrived in Rhodes, Greece, early afternoon,boarded the transfer coach, and set off for our hotel, I can remember it felt like we were on that coach for a life time, it was hot, sticky and smelt of sweaty socks, just like the P.E changing rooms back at school. I couldn’t wait to get off. As soon as we had reached our destination, we grabbed our case’s and headed for check-in, I can remember the long queue, everyone waiting to be checked in, the place was packed, all due to 3 coach loads of people arriving at the same time. Once that commotion was out the way, we made our way to our rooms. We unpacked our swimwear and went straight down to the pool. We spent the next couple of days just relaxing in the sun, swimming in the pool, we also had a cocktail or two or three.
Day 4 (The dreaded day) My Boyfriend and I had decided to go into town to do a little shopping and to see some of the sites, So we got dressed in our shorts and T-Shirts and set off on our way. We made a decision to rent a Scooter, I didn’t want to at first, the thought of being on a motorbike/scooter in a foreign country was a bit nerving. We had both previously ridden a bike , granted I had only ridden once before, but my arm had been twisted, despite my nerves. We got on the bike (No helmet, as it was not a legal requirement) and rode into town with the wind in our hair, we saw some great sites and managed to pick up a few small items for people back home. Just after lunch, we decided to head back to our hotel, we both got back on the bike and set off along the long windy road, I can recall saying, “something doesn’t feel right with the bike” and BOOM!! that was the last thing I could remember.
I woke in a field of straw, oodles of people surrounding me, speaking a strange language I couldn’t understand, I hear my B/F screaming out my name in the background, I respond, but unsure he could hear me, to my right was a man crouched by my side, I had no idea who he was, but he later turned out to be a godsend, he introduced himself as Ian from England, which made communicating rather Convenient, he had witnessed our bike turn the corner and collide with the oncoming car. I tried to sit up but couldn’t move from the waist down, I looked down at my right leg, all I could see was an abundance of blood and a gaping hole in my leg, ripped apart like something out of a horror film, covered in dirt and straw, just for special effect!, I saw the bone in my leg entirely exposed, that’s when I passed out. I came round for a second time on a board, I was being lifted onto the floor in the back of an ambulance, well more of a dirty mini bus really, with my B/F next to me on a stretcher, to be fair, it could of been anyone picking us up off the side of the road, I had no idea what was going on. In and out of consciousness the whole journey to the hospital, Ian met us there, he had followed the ambulance, and stayed with me the entire time, even in the resuscitation room. I became more conscious once the doctors started to prod and poke me, It felt like they were tearing me apart, they were being extremely heavy handed with me, all they appeared to be doing was making the pain more unbearable, I can remember them cutting off all of my clothes, or trying to, by this point I had become extremely agitated, I was screaming in pain, “FUCKING GIVE ME SOME PAIN KILLER’s” , I shouted at them, at this point I realised the doctor could speak English, when he told me off for swearing, nevertheless they were useless, they couldn’t even get the I.V cannula in my hand, Ian had to help them with that, as far as I am aware he wasn’t medically trained at all. I don’t remember much after they eventually got the cannula in, so I guess they put me to sleep.
My eyes opened, all I could see were blurred faces, is that Mum and Dad??, Is this real? or am I dreaming, I really wasn’t sure. I believe I was in and out of consciousness for quite some time, every time I came round I felt so groggy I would just fall back asleep. The next day I was a bit more alert, I remember feeling like I had been hit by a freight train, I looked around the room, it was filthy, stains all over the walls and ceiling, roaches scuttling along the floor, the beds were like something out of a 1940’s war film, in fact the whole room was. When I became more alert Dad told me what had happened. Eye witnesses had told him that our bike had veered off onto the wrong side of the road towards an oncoming car,which we hit head on, I went flying through the air, landed, then slid down a hill into a metal post. I had broken my pelvis, as well as ripping my groin and my leg to bits in quite a bad way, my parents had told the doctors not to operate on my pelvis, they would get an emergency flight back and have me patched up at home, but the Dr’s had to do something about my groin and leg or I would have bleed to death.
The flight home had been booked for myself, my mum and one of the Greek doctors, my Dad was to stay behind and fly home on a separate flight with my boyfriend a few days later. For me the flight was horrendous, 3 rows of seats had to be folded forward with my stretcher placed on top, therefore I was looking down on the window, which made me feel intensely sick, in addition to this there was a green curtain surrounded me for privacy, which mad me feel claustrophobic. I can remember the doctor giving me a couple of injections for pain-relief and Mum poking her head in on me to make sure I was OK, other than that I cannot remember much else, I think I slept for most of the flight. The doctor was wonderful, he came all the way to the Royal Sussex county hospital in Brighton, UK, to hand me over. In addition to everything I had already been through, I had another 2 years of recovery ahead of me.