An Uplifting Experience In Erzurum

The evening prior to our departure from Erzurum we returned to the hotel after the inevitable Doner Kebab and all bundled into the very small lift, the doors closed with lots of hilarity about losing weight, pulling in tummies and no breaking wind. Within seconds of the door closing the lift door flew open.

Two of us that carry a little excessive weight (Bryan and Dave) leaped out where upon the doors closed and the lift now at the correct load commenced its upward journey to the 3rd floor. Well not quite, it jammed about a metre and a bit from the ground floor from whence it had just departed. There was not surprisingly some consternation expressed by the hotel management and quite quickly as the heat built up in the lift from the remaining silkriders Jo, Gareth, Phil and Brendan.

Lift motor resets were tried unsuccessfully and the four jammed in the lift got as comfortable a one can in a one metre square space while Dave and I together with the hotel staff tried to work out an exit strategy for the trapped riders. We managed to get the doors open and found there was a gap of about 40 centimetres between the floor of the jammed lift and the top of the entrance to the lift enough we said for the trapped people to slither out!

Dave vanished and returned moments later with a large concrete block to jam in the gap just in case the lift should start to continue it’s upward movement, and Jo produced her ever present large container of Vaseline, threatening to Vaseline a naked Phil from top to toe; “you will pop through that gap like a pea out of a pod” she said. That threat motivated a clothed Phil to, with great skill and lots of pushing from inside the lift, and pulling by Dave and myself from outside the lift, pop through the gap, quickly followed by Brendan, Jo and Gareth. We were all relieved for two reasons, firstly they were out of the lift not too much worse for wear (although as we subsequently discovered, Phil suffered heavy bruising to his ribs), and secondly the dreaded Vaseline treatment hadn’t been needed.

I think the management of the hotel were pleased to see us depart the following morning and yes the lift had been repaired but we were very careful not to overload it. I took the stairs!!

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