So here we are playing catch up, but on the 12th July I finally completed number 1 on my “Geek List” which was to do a Charity Abseil, and by some strange twist of fate it was the same location as the London Film and Comic Con at Earls Court. Sadly though I didn’t realise this in time to book tickets online, but came to the conclusion that I would be able to get a ticket there. Famous last words, by the way.
That morning, I got up later than I would have liked, packed my costume, since I said if I got my total I would be doing it dressed up, which was made up of things from my wardrobes since I never throw away anything. I decided to go as a Witch, drawing the line at green face paint, because even if it wanted to invoke Elphaba from Wicked, I had a feeling I would come across like Grotbags! And quickly praying to both God and Ganesh (an Agnostic, also worships a deity of the Hindu faith, more on that in the end)
Getting down there at 10:30 I met up with one of my best friends Peter and my boyfriend MT, and we started the process of queuing…which never ended. Now we British are celebrated for this, and it’s never too bad in a Comic Con Queue, since some of the best friends I have ever met have been in the queues, but it was the hottest day of the year, and it was torture, especially since I’m photosensitive. In the end Peter managed to get a ticket off someone, whose friend never showed up and at 13:30, and I was still in the queue, I gave up and went to the abseil.
The people who had been in there, were telling us that it was a shambles and it wasn’t worth it, there was no organisation, which was obvious as there was 10’000 people there. As always the autographs were too expensive, and since there was no one I had an overwhelming desire to meet anyone, I conceded defeat and went to Earls Court 1. And it was exactly at this moment that my foot, after standing around for several hours began to ache. Now I had the choice which was to take Tramadol, which was the only painkiller I had with me and hope my eyeballs didn’t melt, and make me lose my balance which has happened in the past. In truth the only reason I keep them is for when the pain is intense, which is often enough. Thankfully I also had my Deep Freeze, which managed to numb it, before I headed up, and found that the patchwork purple skirt I decided to wear wasn’t suitable, so thank god I was also wearing legging!
So here we all were the 14:00 slots, and it was a nice mixed group of very awesome people as I was suited up in my harness and we were escorted up, and then it was when I decided to get nervous. When I originally thought up my Geek List, admittedly I was feeling sorry for myself, with my foot propped up and was on painkillers. Now the challenge is to make everything a reality, and I wasn’t sure if I was scared of heights or not. The only time I ever experienced fear was when I was in Holland back in 2011 and I visited the Nieuwe Kerk in Delft, and there is nothing more terrifying then standing next to a direct 100 foot drop and the only thing protecting you is an iron grill that only came up to your waist. So the moment we all got up to the very top of Earls Court, most of the team began to look over the edge to see the view of Kensington…I didn’t.
When it came to my moment I was that strange combination of scared, but also very Zen about it, and then came the lean over. I have abseiled in the past, but the last time was when I was 14 and in the Girl Guides, so 20 years ago. So I was on the platform, 70 feet below me was the ground and decided to look down, I knew I couldn’t quit since I had already been told that no one had done so that day, and no way in hell was I going to be the first.
I got my instructions, the way to hold the rope, to walk with the tips of my toes and then came the lean back, this is the scariest part of any abseil, the moment you step back against the wall take those steps and there is no going back, and because it’s me and everything in my life has drama attached to it, I took the step off, and my foot gave out. I am 70 foot in the air, and I’m dangling…thankfully I managed to right myself, and headed down, and it was awesome, and very strange crossing over the red bricks of the building.
I think it took my about two minutes, but I’m not too sure as it was over in seconds and I was back on the ground again, and feeling fantastic, ok I am paying for it right now since my foot decided to bugger up again and as of writing this I’m sitting with an ice pack on my foot, a little gift of a Lion from the ZSL but was it all worth it…oh hell yes.
The thing about Ganesh.
Several years ago, I was with a friend in Southall who had some business with the Hindu Mandir there, which is lovely and welcoming building. Whist they were concluding their business I was talking to one of the Associates of the building, and confessing my ignorance of the Deities of Hinduisms. On a table there were dozens of pictures of the Deities, I was told to walk towards it, and find the one I felt the strongest towards and my hand fell on Ganesh. I was informed that he is the God of Protection and success and by choosing him, he was choosing to protect me. So at times when I feel like I need some help, even as an Agnostic…I ask Ganesh to give me guidance.