Student miraculously survives three days in a cave by licking water droplets off walls
It's hard being a student. Not only are you taking your first tentative steps into something approaching adulthood, you're doing so with a brain in the final hellish throes of adolescence, pressure from all directions in a manner never seen before or again, as well as barely any money to help you survive.
Back in my student times, there were perhaps three days between moments where I would totally and utterly screw up. I was in no way shape or form ready to survive adulthood, and God forbid if you put me in some kind of situation where I'd have to improvise to survive. What 19-year-old could possibly handle that?! Apparently, this one, from Indiana University.
Lukas Cavar was on a cave-diving trip with his friends when he got separated from his caving club on the very first day.
Embarking on a spelunking expedition to Sullivan Cave out in Bloomington, he reached the cave's entrance to find that it had already been padlocked, and that his friends had left him in the cave. He screamed for help, but nobody could hear him, and a poor reception meant he couldn't use his phone.
Cavar then tried to pick the lock with a paper clip, but that didn't work either. Dressed in light clothing and armed with only a plastic bag, two energy bar wrappers, two empty water bottles, a cellphone and a wallet, Cavar realised he was going to have to dig deep to survive.
"I was very confused and pretty scared It took me a little while to wrangle my emotions and sort of approach things analytically, sensibly, to come up with a gameplan to survive."
First, Cavar used the empty wrappers to collect moisture, before collecting water from puddles and rainfall with the empty water bottles. Staying hydrated was imperative to staying alive for three days, so Lukas Cavar also licked water from the cave's walls keep his body going.
To pass the time, he wrote goodbye messages to his friends and family until his phone ran out of battery. While hunger drove him to look for cave crickets, Cavar refrained from eating the tiny insects inside the cave.
Eventually, Cavar's impressive survivalist skills paid off. His parents filed a missing persons report with the university police, and a high school friend informed the Caving Club was missing. Last Tuesday, two club leaders rushed back to the cave and found Cavar asleep at the gate; hungry but unharmed.
Cavar immediately guzzled down on a bowl of pasta and a leftover Big Mac, and said he was "lucky to be alive".
"You could tell they [his fellow club members] were pretty shaken up. They did near kill me. I can’t imagine what kind of guilt they felt."
Meanwhile, the Indiana University Caving Club condemned a "failure of leadership" for getting Cavar stranded in the cave. Lukas is now back in classes following the incident, and though he's glad to be alive, it's unsurprising that he's not looking to take another cave-diving trip anytime soon.