Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Free Falls from the 32rd to the 20th Floor in the Elevator

Still the 1st day at work, and the adventure continued.

I needed to get my badge. Gary offered to take me down to the HR office at the 7th floor, and we took the elevator. While descending from the 32rd floor in the elevator, Gary told me that once he had a free fall from the 32rd to the 20th floor in the elevator.

“My God! Are you kidding me!!!!” Imagine a bomb just dropped in my head. For a few seconds, I could not hear anything but feel my own legs shaking.

“No. If you asked around, many of our co-workers would share their similar experiences with you. Some more than once.” Still smiling at me, he responded with the most calm voice

“Did you sue the company?” I asked.

“No. Things like this happen all the time in China. Why would anybody ever make a big fuss about it? And, generally it is safe to take elevators. There is a small device installed in the elevator that can sense the speed and stop the elevator when the speed is too high.“

Speechless, I was still in shock.

“You know, it’s really not a big deal. And, it’s kind of fun, like taking a roller-coaster ride.”

Still speechless, still recovering from the shock.

I was shocked by what Gary said. But, I was even more shocked by how he said it. He said it in a way as if he were telling me a story, not a life-threatening accident.

Noticing I am literally freaking out at this conversation, Gary tried to calm me down by telling me more horror stories about mal-functioning elevators at the train station, food poisoning,… He thought listening to more horror stories in China will help build up my resistance.

I interrupted, “ Gary, please, give me a break. One horror story a day”

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