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UK Mike (miner2049er)

The Bi-Weekly British Backtrack – Halloween

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So I had a week off work this week and planned a lengthy and inspiring article to round it off, waxing lyrical about the quite recent “Americanisation” of Halloween that has happened in the UK in recent years, turning what was a popular event into a much more commercial and wider celebrated event. It was always the little brother of Bonfire Night but has now overtaken it as kids are putting much more effort into their Trick or Treating and the Health And Safety bods get their hands on Bonfire Night and the practice of setting off fireworks at anything less than a distance of 100 metres.

Things got off to a good start with a nocturnal visit to Spooky World on Sunday, a small theme park on a working farm in Cheshire that has a maize maze and other attractions, but it takes on a spooky twist on the run up to Halloween.

There are four main attractions, Disturbed, Quarantine, Haunted Hay Ride and Field Of Screams. The first two are indoors and you make your way through dark and creepy buildings while live actors add to the horror by touching you as you pass and jumping out at you when you least expect it. The third is a tractor ride through the corn fields with things flying towards you, actors jumping on board and chain saw wielding maniacs chasing you through the fields, and the fourth is the same but on foot as you take part in a real life scene from Children Of The Corn or Joyride / Road Kill.

So what went wrong then? Well, Monday meant taking a trip to Air Kix, an indoor skydiving centre where you are lofted above the ground over a giant stream of air. How close it is to the real thing I wouldn’t know, because I’ve only ever flown on the inside of a plane before and have always chosen to land when the plane does, but it did create a weird sensation of flight.

It also created a very real sensation of waking up the next day and not being able to twist my neck at all, not being able to cough, sneeze or fart without a bolt of lightning shooting through my neck, and slightly more worrying, not being able to sit, stand, lie, squat, lean, crouch or slouch without being in intense pain. Hence the short entry this month with no real insight into anything other than a couple of trips I’ve been on.

Things are once again looking up though as tomorrow we are planning a trip to Southport where among other things we will take in a vintage coin op museum. Maybe next year I’ll wax lyrical about Halloween, but until then:

Double, double, toll and trouble;
Fire burn and cauldron bubble.
Eye of newt, toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder's fork and blind worm's sting,
Lizard's leg and howlet's wing.

That’s from Shakespeare's Macbeth.

Crap isn’t it?

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