Last leg of the day starts at dusk – the druidic ceremonies are over, and I’m back in a Stewarding role, along with the Round Table vols. This time it’s the Christmas Lights switch-on, and the preceding entertainment – a fire show.
No pics I’m afraid, as Caroline and I are too busy stopping small children from getting run over. The crowd has arrived in good time, but the road closure is for a limited period, and hasn’t started yet (this is the only A-Road through town, and we have to close this and the bridge) . The roadway gets gradually narrower as the crown increases so it’s a great relief when the road is finally closed, and the chap on the PA can stop exhorting people to get back on the pavements. An over-keen bus driver tries to get through at the last minute, but he’s seen off by a policewoman.
First up is the fireshow (BTW, I’ve not mentioned performers by name, but you can see all of them and the schedules in this pdf leaflet), an impressive live fire juggling act , with intermittent fire-breathing – don’t try this at home kids.
Then it’s the lights switch-on, for which Mistletoe Queen Sally, and her attendant Kirsty, reappear. Lights are then switched on… and fuel slight controversy as they been cut back this year for H&S reasions – just 2 weeks before their erection most were deemed to be too dangerous to use, so it looks a weeny bit sparse. We’ll do better next year.
Then it’s time for the Santa procession, and time for our PA man to rouse the crowd into shouting for Santa. He duly appears, in horse and cart, accomapnied by the town band and choral society singing carols and followed by the primary school children and parents, each brandishing a lantern they’ve made in school. And off they go round the corner towards Santa’s Grotto, set up in St Mary’s Church…
Which means we can go and rest, for about 30 minutes. As the next event is the Mistletoe Ball – off with the fluorescent vest, on with the suit, and prep my (v) short after dinner speech – this year my theme is mistletoe tat – plastic mistletoe, mistletoe condoms, and musical mistletoe…
Maybe I’ll cover that another in another blog entry.