The day I broke my neck

Newly injured by the roadside, Eastern Sri Lanka, September 5, 2006 [Reuters]

When I woke, the engine noise was gone. So, judging by the light, was the tinted windscreen. My face was hard against the minibus dashboard, I’ve lost my glasses and there was blood in my mouth.

My neck hurt like hell, and I couldn’t move anything below it.

I paused, made to take a breath — and realized I had no control of it at all. None of my chest muscles had any conscious function. I was…

Reuters Global Affairs Columnist. Executive director, Project for Study of the 21st Century. British Army reservist. Member, Labour Friends of the Forces

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Peter Apps

Peter Apps

Reuters Global Affairs Columnist. Executive director, Project for Study of the 21st Century. British Army reservist. Member, Labour Friends of the Forces

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