Years ago I used to write up posts that recapped my “fascinating” weekend (that’s some ironic quote marks, just to be clear. I used the same title for these – Weekender – and all of them were written in a vague, pseudo diary style which I think fitted the purpose for which I wrote them; I have a crap memory so even now looking back at the last time I published a post titled Weekender I can recall exactly which weekend that was (4 years ago, time flies like a banana and all that) and exactly what happened.
When I sat down to write up my London weekend it felt very much like that, a post for me to remember what had happened and, after another busy, fun filled weekend, I find myself sitting down to write another.
Friday night found me wandering to the Hydro to see Roger Waters do his thing. A friend who works in the industry said he’d heard it was an amazing visual show and the first half proved that completely and utterly wrong. We were sitting up in the bleachers, off to one side and all I could see was the band and a massive screen behind them (admittedly a very high def screen) but… big whoop.
But the second half completely blew my mind. It kicked off with a large long truss that extend out the length of the audience (from stage to the back of the ‘standing’ section for those familiar with the Hydro), dropping down and down and down until it was all of 3 or 4 metres above the heads of the people below. It then unveiled itself to be a series of screens… and sitting side on we had a perfect view. That was pretty WOW but towards the end of the show (and it is a show) the REAL WOW happened.
The Hydro is a large space so the resulting laser prism must’ve been 60 metres on each edge. It then filled with rainbows before the final light beams emerged. A real life rendering of the cover of Dark Side of the Moon, it was stunning in both scale and beauty. Ohhh and the music was pretty fuckin good too!
There was a lot of political and anti-globalisation messaging in his show as well. He is not shy of voicing his opinion and has the same liberal leanings as many, and there was something gloriously uplifting about seeing the words TRUMP IS A PIG across that giant screen, countered by horrific images of war and genocide that had me in tears. I hadn’t expected such a range of emotions and it took me most of my walk home to unpack them.
Saturday, after the usual gym session and a quiet chilled out afternoon, and I was heading to a friends house to drive out to Whitecraigs Rugby Club. Why? To do a firewalk of course!
Firstly, to everyone who sponsored me, thank you. You helped raise over £9,000 which, after Gift Aid, will end up more than £10,000. That money will go to some uplifting experiences for some children who could well do with some cheer in their lives. My friend, who also did the firewalk, is one of the organisers and trust me, she will make sure every penny is well spent on giving the kids a great time.
Anyway, the firewalk was a great experience although I should, at this point, confirm that I have some blisters; about 4 in total, all small and not sore at all after the initial ‘stingy’ feeling faded. Ohhh and I have a small bruise on my neck but that was from something else entirely.
Before the firewalk we were prepped with motivational thinking, mind over matter ideas, and of course we snapped an arrow with our neck. Wait, what? Ohhh yeah, not mentioned at all in the build-up, the firewalk instructor (her actual job title!) casually dropped that into her chat. An actual metal tipped arrow using nothing but your neck. Riiigghhhtttt.
You’ll be pleased to hear, dear reader, that I did not end up with an arrow puncturing my throat as said arrow did snap (I still have the pieces!) and after that the firewalk was a doddle! Top tip, walk with both hands held flat and facing upwards out to your sides, like you are balancing two small trays of drinks and you’ll walk ‘lighter’ (try it, it’s true!).
I was a little nervous as we waited in line but before I knew it, my friends had done it and I was up next. A few steps on very hot embers and it was over. The aftermath was a couple of ‘hot’ spots and it really did feel just like walking on very hot paving stones, not comfortable but not unbearable. Go us!!
Sunday was a lazy day, not just because of the highly emotional couple of days previously, but because it marked the end of a two month walking challenge. I managed over one million steps and, frankly, was glad to NOT be counting my steps at all! Instead I headed down to my see my sister, my Mum and Dad, and the cheekiest little niece an Uncle could wish for. She may be in her terrible twos but one smile, or mention of ‘Unkie Gee’ and I’m putty in her hands (and I think she’s starting to realise it!).
It was a wonderful end to a wonderful weekend… and next weekend is shaping up to be just as good!