Lying prostrate upon the cold ground, I found myself in that gray place between unconsciousness and coherence. I had come out of a peaceful oblivion vomiting violenty. My body wretched and shook as the seemingly distant, monotone-gray figures lurked overhead. My eyes searched for their faces through the dim & hazy tunnel. I could hear their voices now, seemingly disembodied, though clear and comforting. I wasn't alone.
I remembered now, that I was in dire straits, though panic and distress were far from my mind. I knew that my companions, who had only minutes before cheerfully joked and bantered with me were still there. They had called for help as per my unecessary, previously whispered request. I felt myself lifted up above the ground, my body a dead weight that I could only sense, without quite feeling. Then came a sense of heaving and turning with what had seemed some degree of concerted effort by my handlers. I was now on the stretcher as I experienced a smoothness of movement and feeling of weightlessness. I now seemed to glide above the ground as glimpses of light and shadow passed by.
I felt a surge of cool, fresh air upon my face. I took a long, deep breath and exhaled. The condensation of my breath hung in the air like a ghostly mist, slowly dissolving away wisp by wisp. I could see now. I faced the dark sky of a rainy November night as I was floated above the shiny, wet roadway. And there, beneath the soft, warm glow of the lamp-posts, I watched the raindrops fall ever so slowly, gently and magically. Their descent seemed to take an eternity as they glinted and glimmered with sparkling light. My eyes traced their paths, mesmerised by the immensity of the beauty I was witnessing. The sensation of their wonderful coolness upon my flesh was a blissful blessing. I was enraptured. My mind and senses reeled. I had found a peace and tranquility I'd never before known. The sense of surrender & liberation was blissfully overwhelming. There, in the shadow of death, I was experiencing a glimpse of heaven itself.
It was then that I fully recalled I wasn't alone. I saw now, my rescuers, caught up in their tasks, frantic with the urgency of their job. Yes, they were still speaking to me, at me. This I knew, though "I" was only half-way there. What was all the fuss about, anyway? I peered out at my companions, trailing a little way behind me. I thought of them, and now thought also of my family. No matter what, I thought to myself, they'd go on. Yes...the world would go on, along with them, as it always has. I felt a sadness knowing that they might mourn, that in fact, they would mourn. I certainly didn't want them to. I wished that I could let them all know that it'd be alright, that it WAS alright. That...even though my time within this realm might well be at an end and my passing imminent, I AM alright.
I recall being loaded into the back of the ambulance with a rumble and the slamming shut of doors...the distant voices, my now familiar company, were still there with me, located somewhere above. I listened to them trail off into the distance as I drifted away upon the new sensation of floating weightlessly and rapidly down the road...slowing down briefly, then speeding up again, faster this time, faster and onward into the peaceful oblivion from which I had awoken.