I spent last weekend in Chester with a bunch of cultists I met on the Internet. This was a far less alarming situation than it would sound. It’s a nice cult, more keen on tea than kool-aid. Mass (or indeed any) suicide is frowned on.
Apart from the preposterous amount of time it took to get there and back, I had a fantastic time. Note for people travelling to Halloween parties in another country: airports don’t like toy guns in luggage, even checked in. They don’t have a good reason for this, but you won’t win an argument with them over it.
On Friday I flew to Manchester and took the train from there down to Chester. I stopped briefly in Manchester to collect some elements of my Indiana Jones costume from the awesome Sarah. Without her I would have just been dressed as a man in brown trousers. When I reached Chester I checked into the hostel that we had taken over for the weekend, and then got myself off down to the pub to a disconcertingly enthusiastic welcome. There was much rejoicing.
We spent Saturday afternoon in the middle of Chester giving free cakes and sweets to bemused passers-by. Reactions ranged from eagerness through bemusement, confusion, wariness, distrust, and apathy to plain old-fashioned running away.
The ladies in a very expensive looking clothes shop which we went into despite being convinced it was "too posh" for our brand of frivolity turned out to be very enthusiastic about our random act of kindness. Conversely, the grouchy fuckers in the Jesus shop, who we thought were bound to be friendly, turned out to be rude to the point of meanness. Maybe they don’t like pagan rituals like dressing up.
Saturday closed with retiring to a pub. And then another pub. And then a third pub. And then getting thrown out. My theory was that if I went to sleep at all I would be wasting money, so I was among the few remaining at the end of the night.
I took some photos but, just like my vision, most of them were blurry or out of focus. Those that came out well are up on Flickr.