A zombie writes:
My bootheels echo in the empty canyons back of The Grand. A distant siren howls as the sun goes dead. I’ve been warned off. Zombies roam the streets of Lancaster and no one is safe.
Journey To The End Of Night is part role-play, part orienteering and in large part political protest at the Centros plans for Lancaster.
Cutting back from High Street towards Dallas Road I spot my first zombie. Two humans flee, narrowly evading her lunges. Feigning nonchalance I stroll on until she sees me.
“Do you want to be a zombie with me?’ she flirts…
“maybe…” I wait, “…not,” I turn and sprint, wrongfooting her and relying on her recent exertions giving me the edge.
Carnival of Culture clearly hadn’t expected so many participants, over a 100 when I signed up. So the start was delayed, information was poorly circulated, and it was, frankly, shambolic. At the various checkpoints the well-performed, brief political scenarios again slowed things and long frustrated queues developed.
Over half-way now, but I anticipated trouble on the Marsh. It came as I hit West Road. I was tired and paranoid, eyeing every passerby as a threat. Even so I almost slipped by these two before my wariness alerted them. I ran, stumbled, heart in mouth, chased hard. There were two and I couldn’t sidestep both. I was their victim.
If a part of this event was to show the vibrancy of Lancaster I think it worked. Seeking escape routes and short-cuts I found beautiful squares, passages from town to suburb and back, and lovely buildings everywhere.
Now a zombie myself I had the hunger for human flesh. By the staion I saw her. She caught my eye and flinched, she was mine. Her friends ran, abandoned her, and she had no chance.
Rounding things off Market Street was alive with music, jugglers, clowns all raising a voice for Lancaster. Carnival of Culture made their agenda clear, but they also made for a fun night in the end, and what better way to get a message over?
Reviewed by Kev McVeigh