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delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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Recollections of school trips to north wales
delirium happy
This was originally going to be a comment to one of kamara's entries, but I decided that I'd post it here instead, for no discernible reason.

With apologies to slovakia, who also endured this particular trip.

Ah yes, school trips to Hell, North Wales. Make that two of us having nightmares tonight.

The school trip to North Wales I had when I was in top juniors was actually quite a nice one. I don't remember all that much about it, other than a trip to Angelsey, and a really cool gift shop type place.

No, the killer for me was the one in first year of high school (that's "age 11" or "year 7" for anyone playing along at home). I'm fairly certain that would score in the top 10 worst times in my life ever, and it was a memory I'd safely repressed until reading about this. It was to a place called Kinmel Hall, and was undoubtedly a gateway on earth to the deepest pits of the netherhells.

It was a combined biology, geography and outdoor pursuits weekend. We tended to have one of these every year up until GCSEs, and they were as thoroughly wretched as you'd imagine. I think that the common thread to the three elements was standing in rivers. And rocks. There were a lot of rocks as well. Unfortunately, with this being Wales and not Canada, we only got rocks and water and not trees. </obscure reference>

But anyway, these trips were all horrible, horrible things, and I do try to repress the memory of them whenever I can, but by far the worst of the lot was Kinmel Hall. The very name strikes terror into my heart.

For starters, there was the whole "spending time in the company of your peers" element of it. And when you are an 11 year old kid, your peers generally tend to be arseholes. And when you're an introverted 11 year old kid without all that many friends. Well. Yes.

And the problem with trying to recount just how bad the trip was is that it's hard to recall which of it was real, and which bits were legends. For instance, I do know that lots of people were playing with ouija boards (though I was young and innocent at the time and what my ears heard people saying was "Luigi boards" which I figured must be something to do with Mario; go figure). What exactly they were trying to do with them, I don't know. Possibly trying to get a dark spirit to kill me, or possibly not. It's hard to tell. What I do know is that it involved a whole lot of people being even more moronic and annoying than usual.

I also recall getting insufficient sleep, due in part to people in general beig rowdy, and in part due to the people I was sharing a room with being Annoying and deliberately stopping me from getting to sleep. I recall that one night, one of the teachers called an emergency meeting at night to, essentially, say "You're all behaving like complete fuckwits. Stop it now, or I will come down like a ton of bricks". Only probably slightly more nicely than that. Slightly. Of course, what actually happened, form my perspective, was that the people I was rooming with woke me up and said "someone just came in and said that we all have to be downstairs in 15 minutes time" or something I like that. I then muttered "yeh, right!" rolled over and did my best to go back to sleep. The following morning I discovered that there had actually been a meeting, and I started to feel immensely guilty. And we all know that there's nothing like a guilt trip to improve such a fun filled few days.

There's also the thing about the lightning. The retellings where lightning actually hit someone, or they had to run to avoid a tree that fell due to being hit by lightning, and other such variants can most probably be dismissed as apocryphal, but I'm thinking that they were actually based on fact. What my dim, repressed memories are suggesting actually happened is that lightning did, in fact, hit a tree in the hall grounds, which then set on fire only to be put out shortly thereafter by rain, and that the storm also caused a power cut for a short while. Such fun. And do bear in mind that this is the sort of weather we'd been doing outdoor pursuits, biology and geography in.

Horrible, horrible, horrible.

If anyone needs me, I'll be off in the corner hitting myself on the head with a hammer until I concus myself enough to get amnesia.

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YES! I'm not the only one who thought they were Luigi boards... *cough* ahem..

/me covers the hammer in layers of cotton wool thenhands it back. There ya go. Don't want to damage anything now.

Do you think I could get in touch with the ghosts of old-school video games with a Luigi board?

(Deleted comment)
Yeah, we had a standing-in-water-staring-at-rocks trip In 7th grade, and that was one of my favorite field trips. My friend learned his watch wasn't waterproof, and our teacher had absolutely no control over us, so we did whatever we wanted. The only bad part was when someone accidentally hit our teacher with a small stone. He sat us all down and told us we weren't going anywhere until he found out who did it. About 30 seconds later, the bus pulled up to take us home, and he told us all to get on. Crisis diverted.

Yeesh. I never had to do trips like that, and now I'm rather grateful, though I still want to visit Wales someday. :)

And don't bother with a hammer. Those aren't so fun. Slamming your head into something else, now there's fun. Across the hall from Izzy's room, there's a bullseye painted on the wall with the caption "Bang head here"--in honor of her, actually...

But walls are just so passé, darling. I actually remember one particular time when I was back in school and I was being particularly manic, and I leaped across several tables, and then banged my head on the wall a few times, only I did it slightly harder than I'd meant to.

And desks. I do desks quite a lot too. In one of my evil thermodynamics lectures last week, I was lying face down on my arm on the desk, as if I was asleep, and then started slowly banging my head against the desk. Following the lecture: (paraphrased)

Dave: were you actually asleep through that?
Me: No, I was actually listening.
Elizabeth: And what was that when you suddenly started banging your head into the desk?
Me: Like I said, I was listening...

Heh. I've got a uni trip to North Wales coming up to do essentially the same kind of stuff, except with probably more rocks. I suspect the only difference will be that I'll be spending my week with a bunch of Rugby players with the mental capacity of eleven-year-olds, rather than the 11 year olds themselves.

Nevertheless, I'm kinda looking forward to it. There's always a chance that one of them will fall of a mountain or something.

*shudders in the manner of Sideshow Bob in that episode where he kept treading on rakes*

You summed up that emergency meeting quite well, considering you weren't there - I'm not sure if "fuckwits" was the exact word used, but it's close enough.

At the time when the lightning was at its worst, the combined wisdom of the Sports staff had my group building rafts. In the swimming pool. We actually saw the forks of lightning hitting ground several feet away from us. Looking back, I think the only good thing about that week was the fact that nobody got killed that night.

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