This week we have decided to take the opportunity of showing how differently people can perceive the same situation. It is intended to be both a cute way of illustrating the importance of empathy and, quite frankly, a little bit of therapy after one of the most frightening nights of our lives. Four people, one Clio, the worst winds in forty years – our stories.
When we found out that Peter and Patrick were delayed at Stockport, Matt and I decided to drive over and pick them up. The traffic was a little iffy due to the weather so we arrived late but we were soon on the road again. The drive back to The Roaches (the house we have been holding our team building / strategy week) was a little strenuous as some trees had come down blocking our path and we had to find a new route – there was also debris on the road which caused some concern. Overall though we pulled together and I was very impressed by how professional, calm and collected we were as a team.
What started out a simple drive home from a cold, wet Stockport station turned into a traumatising event that will forever send chills through my body. Darkness had fallen, just like the trees around us – weaving in and out to beat the dropping branches in the Renault Clio. We managed to reach the driveway of Roach Hall after hours of panic, but were stopped in our tracks as a tree slammed down uttering as Gandalf, ‘YOU SHALL NOT PASS’! …We must walk. Showing indomitable courage in the face of adversity, we finally reach the bright lights of safety. Constructing Equality 1, Mother Nature 0. (Beer all present and correct)
Last night…F*@k me! One of the most petrifying nights that I have ever experienced! It was like something off a film…driving through a forest with trees on the verge of landing on top of us in a little blue Renault Clio rocking as if it was a boat out at sea!
We came across 4 blown over trees; the big b@*****ds! Just lying there like a massive dead weight blocking our path to the house. Driving around in f*@king circles trying to find a route to get to our house with that annoying sat nav telling us to “perform a U turn” in the worst tone of voice you could imagine. Pr*@k!
It was that bad I was on the verge of ringing my mummy!
The Return of The King (or the Epic of Matt)
The countryside – long had I been away from my natural home. With my trusty driver at the wheel, we sallied forth from Ost Roaches to collect the squires from Macclesgard (a township of those still holding fast against the growing Shadow in The South). Peter the Bold and Patrick the Meticulous were to complete our Fellowship at Ost Roaches and so we stopped at a local merchant house to acquire suitable provisions and a plentiful supply of wine to toast our victories over the last year.
Being simple townfolk, my retinue were unaware of the perilous terrain through which we would be venturing. Their spirits began high, the squires regaling us with tales of their adventures on the road, of train delays and foul orcs who had dogged their steps for many hours.
As we neared our destination, the creatures of nature recognised the return of their rightful ruler, and approached to show their deference. Even a number of the mighty tree-folk came close and lay down in the road to welcome me.
As I have mentioned, my humble retinue were unused to such displays, and many grew sore afraid. We decided to finish our journey on foot, to honour my woodland subjects with a greater chance to gaze upon me in wonder and with the light of squire Patrick’s lantern glinting in the eyes of fawns, trolls, boggarts and other folk we passed by.