GgbGbb ArhAhrAbArnhnnhAhGbb GnhG MMGnllbG

7 Sep

In case you were wondering, that post title is zombie for, ‘The apocalypse is nigh’. Last night, Mr Monster and I got a good idea of what it might be like if the first wave of the zombie horde did actually descend on Bristol in a terrifying cross-city mission called ‘2.8 Hours Later’. Allow me to explain…

You start with a map of the city, a group of team mates, and a sense of fore-boding. The organisers set you off at intervals armed with the first grid reference to head towards, and off you go into the night. At each checkpoint a character gives you a piece of the story and offers the grid reference for the next stop. The only snag is that the city is crawling with zombies.

 

Some of the zombies lurch around slowly, some can sprint with alarming speed, and there is no way of knowing which is which until they are hot on your tail with a taste for brains. Mr Monster and I went for full on camouflage to increase our chances of survival.

Of course, the whole thing is a very well organised game, staffed by actors and volunteers, but let me tell you, the first time you have to run from a growling, blood-splattered member of the undead, it feels pretty damn real. If they catch you, they mark you with a UV pen . At the finish line you pass through a testing centre to be scanned by scientists in fall-out suits and gas masks to see if you are infected, before the survivors and the newly be-zombied party the night away together at a zombie disco.

I can’t say too much about the ins and outs of the night as the game is still being played until Saturday and I don’t want to spoil it for anyone who is yet to play, but I will say that the course takes you through some of Bristol’s spookiest abandoned buildings and public spaces. I was grateful of Mr Monster’s map reading skills, and also of the support of our team-mates, most of whom we had never met, but who we were soon clinging to for support. I can certainly understand the bonds people form with strangers in emergency situations now. This was us bonding before setting off.

How did we do, I hear you ask yourselves. Well…Mr Monster survived the apocalypse. I however feel like a little bit of a fraud because when I was scanned I was declared a survivor, however a zombie did get a hand to me in a deserted warehouse but did not mark me. I was running too fast with adrenaline pumping through my veins and couldn’t have stopped if I’d tried.  On the whole though I was impressed with my performance and certainly wouldn’t be the first to be killed if the wave did come. I never knew I could run as fast as I did when I made the debatable decision to make a run for it through an open plaza populated by two female zombies who I mistook for the slow kind. I chose to run straight through the middle of the pair, but as I neared them they were both revealed to be sprinters and came for me. As they lunged for me I literally flew, screaming like a ninny and vaulting down a small set of stairs into the sanctuary of a derelict church. I managed to evade them and created enough of a diversion to allow the rest of my team to make it past too.

Once we made it to the testing centre we had a good healthy mix of survivors and the undead!

Even though deep down you know that it is all make-believe and that you are quite safe, with St Johns ambulance a discreet distance away, the whole thing gives a complete feeling of primal fear and the will to survive. It gives you a chance to see what you’re made of and to connect with that part of you which steps up in a crisis. I’m really glad that we’d booked the tickets before we knew that we have to move tomorrow as otherwise we might not have done it.

So, what did I learn about myself. I learnt that I can’t read maps under pressure, I scream like a child when I’m scared, I look good in camouflage, and I don’t like zombies!

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2 Responses to “GgbGbb ArhAhrAbArnhnnhAhGbb GnhG MMGnllbG”

  1. scillagrace September 7, 2012 at 11:01 pm #

    Gotta forward this to my daughter!

  2. Patch September 9, 2012 at 6:16 pm #

    Glad you enjoyed it. Mr P took part in the same thing in Leeds last year. Unfortunately I had to stay home and look after our fledgling zombie hunters who needed an early night!

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