Sunday, October 17, 2010

More Than Winning a Sporting Event: Part I

They said it was like winning a sporting event. But it wasn't. The event in history was more – so much more. As you may be aware, as it is all over the news, the Chilean miners who had been trapped underground for 69 days were just rescued this last week. Let me reiterate that concept. MINERS WERE UNDERGROUND FOR 69 AND SURVIVED! Crazy, right? The stories they told were even crazier.

The miners adventure began on August 5, 2010. Although the details or reasoning of the trap has not been investigated fully, they miners were trapped 2,300 feet underground with no way of escaping. This is half of a mile. As a cross country runner I'm thinking, "Oh, that is not too far," but as soon as I remind myself that this is depth and not width or laps around the track the distance seems so much longer. There were 33 men below the surface of the earth. These men were not found for 17 days. They had no idea if they would ever be rescued or escape. Let's just imagine this for a second. You are underground with your colleagues. Many of them you may not particularly care for or get along with. And you are stuck. There isn't another room you can escape to or someone to tell all of your feelings to about how much you don't like this fellow colleague. There is NO escape. To me this sounds like a nightmare, and for many of the men, it was.

After 17 days, they were found, though. Although the hole through the surface of the earth they drilled to get to the men was small, it provided the men with food and nourishment. I was told by one of my teachers that the men were only allowed to have liquid nourishments as they had to A, lose weight in order to fit in the canister that would come to rescue them and B, they were not allowed to bend over while in the canister and if they had solids and got sick, they would bend over to vomit and break the canister.

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