13 November, 2008

Brockham Bonfire 2008

Set your wayback machine for last weekend (okay not so wayback) and join us as, despite the fact that it had been raining really very hard all day, and Flyingpops mum had already called us in the morning to cancel attending (she normally walks along with us), we decided (perhaps unwisely) to go to the Brockham Bonfire...the easiest route for us, as we discovered before, is to drive to Reigate, park the car in Morrisons car park and then pay to get the special bus service (which this year was actually quite a posh coach instead of a broken down semi-retired double decker) -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #1
- it's not actually that far to Brockham from Reigate (about a ten minute drive), so in no time we were trudging through the dark past the odd stalls selling glowing items for draping around one's person and over the river -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #2
- to join the surprisingly (considering the way the weather had been) swolen crowd awaiting the festivities and gorging themselves on the constant stream of burgers and sausages coming out of the bustling kitchens -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #4
- we went and checked out the hog roast, overheard the guys cooking it saying that it was totally burnt, but that they couldn't take the heat shield off it as they feared it would be ruined if it rained (and it was starting to drizzle) -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #6
- so we wandered back away from the grassy area (as it was starting to get extremely muddy and slippery), I slipped a few times trying to get up the little slope away from the hog roast fence and then back onto the road and we made our way up to watch the torchlit procession from a position not far away from the organisers watchtower...and it was here that we spent the next 25 minutes waiting, at one stage we did catch a glimpse of the procession, but we were then told (as the rain continued to build into a proper shower) that because the conditions were so bad in the car park we would have to wait for everyone to park before everything would kick off, so the torches vanished back round the corner again as the rain did it's best to soak everyone through and dampen our enthusiasm...when the final stragglers from the car park did finally manage to drag themselves to the green the procession started up again, the guy was hoisted onto the top of the (increasingly saturated) pile of wood -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #7
- and this time the torch bearers managed to make it all the way to the bonfire (which we were jolly pleased about as we were now completely soaking and getting rather cold, Flyingpops muttering something about "rather being curled up on the sofa in front of X Factor") -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #9
- unfortunately the wood was so wet by this stage that the flames took *forever* to reach the top -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #12
- it was literally another 20 minutes before the bangers started to go off (one or two at a time, not the usual cacophony at all, which was a bit of a let down), during this time we made our way back along the road so the massive amounts of smoke coming off the bonfire wouldn't be in our way of the display -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #19
- and then (thank goodness) the usual having to cheer louder/"I can't hear you!" cycle was broken as on our first (as cheerful as possible in the circumstances) collective yell was answered by the start of the fireworks (making me think the guys controlling it were perhaps getting damp and cold too) -
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #22
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #23
Brockham Bonfire 2008 #28
Shame about the weather, but an excellent display (as usual)...when it all finished we made a mad dash for the buses, got on the first one and then had another mad dash through Reigate from the Red Cross in an absolute cloudburst (couldn't have got any wetter if I had jumped in the bath) and all the way across the car park at Morrisons (as I had stupidly advised Flyingpops to park near the pick-up bus stop rather than the dropping off one)...oh well, maybe we'll remember for next year!


Ys said...

I just watched the fireworks from the back yard because Stradey Park is only down the road ;) The boys let some fireworks off in the garden next door too but it was too cold so I watched from the back door - I'm such a wimp.

Sarah said...

I did think you seemed a little bit grumpy that night when we saw you!! Hee hee. It wasn't THAT bad.... but we had had a nice meal at the Watermill and some nice red wine so perhaps I had on some special red wine coloured spectacles... :-)

¨°º©[ Fink ]©º°¨ said...

Yep, one can of weak cold beer doesn't quite cut it next to nice red wine in the autumn weather "cheer" stakes... ;)