|Welcome to Scotland!|
We arrived in at the museum in good time but immediately hit a problem. Our contact was uncontactable, either by us or the museum staff, so what had begun as a very well-timed and orderly operation suddenly stepped up about five gears. I remember running back and forth past the glass case containing Dolly the Sheep, which was very surreal, carrying armfuls of kit. By the time we found out where we needed to be there was only one hour left to set everything up and bodypaint four people, two of them from head to toe. We got it done and done well, like always, but there was no time to grab a breather before people started arriving.
|Dolly the sheep! Excitement!|
I'd never fainted before... and I still haven't, but it was a really close thing. You give up your sense of time when you are a statue, so I have no idea how long I was like that for, maybe a minute, maybe ten, but just as quickly I felt fine again, apart from coming out in a sweat and being a bit wobblier than previously. One person noticed and asked me if I was alright (I nodded once in a very statuey fashion), but otherwise I think I got away with it. I assumed the lack of dinner and water, the hot light behind me and the warm crowded area I was in all had something to do with it, but it wasn't until two days later that a friend mentioned postural hypotension to me. You know how you get headrushes when you stand up fast and the blood all falls away from your brain? That blood carries oxygen to your nonce and it's the lack of it that makes you faint. Well it turns out you can get the same thing from standing in place for too long! Without movement to help force the blood round your body and up to your head, it can pool in your lower half and if it reaches critical mass you can get suddenly dizzy. I guess that's what must have happened.
By the time we had trooped back to the hotel (still in paint, seriously confusing the poor receptionist), showered and found a pizza restaurant I was all back to normal and it was just a funny story. We drove home the next morning, taking a different route along the A68 through Northumberland National Park, which was frosty everywhere and, on some of the higher hilltops, still snowy. I slept a bit but it was really quite beautiful, bare and empty. Once you reach the start of the A1 the land becomes abruptly tamer. I would have liked to take some photos there too, but Andy's misty car window made it impossible. Look...
See. I tried.