Monday, 22 March 2010

The Battle of Trafalgar. Series 2.

Rain, they said, and they were right. I may have avoided the rain if I had left when intended, but it didn't happen. Half an hour behind schedule and the intended forecast rang true. The umbrella helped, but the Reebok trainers, bought on impulse from an Oxford Street "Sports Direct" for eighteen quid three years before for the purpose of gym exercise, were a bit ragged and prone to leakage. Richard was waiting at the station, just as one useful train was pulling away. Not a problem, the intended one should still get us to The Big Smoke in time. Even when three minutes late.

It occurred to me on the train that mentioning "ninja stars" and "the full Arnie" may have had some of the more conservative types lucky enough to be sitting down, sending frantic text messages to a useful 999 text service. As it was, we were beneath their notice, being the bequiffed and bearded oiks that we were. Lord knows what the twenty-something yuppies thought as they munched on their prawn sandwiches, gleefully looking forward to the yacht roadshow in Putney. Fuck 'em.

As it was, we arrived on my estimated schedule and the three-stop trip underground would get us to our destination well on time. But I'm a creature of habit, and I headed straight to the wrong line, with my trusting friend putting his ill-advised faith in my normally assured route-making. One stop later at the Green Park, and my error hit me. It was fine, an exit and quick jog would still result in punctuality. And it did, thank goodness, but my pride took an embarrassing hit.

With the rain now stopped, we mingled amongst our fellow brethren. The standard attire was there - camo gear, hoodies, band tee shirts, daft sunglasses, a viking helmet, a skimpy Christmas dress on some bloke. This all paled into comparison when I noticed the man on the ledge. This was not the day for a sermon. It wasn't right. I felt like warning him, but he made his choice. He would have to live with it.

Photo - Alexander Dick

Then he arrived, our very own Cyrus. His name to most was Stuart, sometimes Mike, but Cyrus seemed appropriate when considering his success at bringing us all together...and with his upcoming demise. He made his speech, everyone was rapt, and then...the wave of noise. The second Battle of Trafalgar.

It was glorious. The might of an army, with one sole aim. No weapon was spared, guns, grenades, throwing knives, AK47s, flamethrowers, The Force. The lot.

Photo: Mark Richardson

No one was spared.

Photo - Tom Jones

Photo - Tom Jones

By the end...devastation.

Photo - Becky Sadler

I wondered how it looked to those around who could just stand and watch, powerless, except to note its place in history. Especially when I realised my demise was captured, after a brave and staggering last stand with red rucksack still intact, as I met the eyes of the soldier with the red mane, and we finished it once and for all. At 25 seconds to be precise:

Up close, I can only imagine the horror...

But this is nothing new. Some have seen it all before. They know when help is beyond the injured and barren...

Photo: Mark Richardson

It as the end, and I especially felt for the one who fell in the water, the water you don't go anywhere near. But ultimately, I felt for myself as I lay in agony, having landed on the ninja stars I bloody well forgot to use...

Everyone then regenerated and went to the pub. Or shopping. I bought Secret Wars toys. Woop!

NOTE: I've borrowed some photos and Youtube vids, and they're credited where possible. Thanks for it, but if you don't want me to us them, let me know. There's plenty more vids on Youtube. Go see.

A big thanks to Stuart, who organised it, with more big thanks to Simon, Nick, Edgar, Jessica and Mark. Couldn't have done it without you.

No comments: