08 May 2006

Sultan's Elephant : Part 1

As I walked from Westminster tube I did wonder how I was going to find the Elephant because the map and itinerary (I never realised elephants were so organised whilst travelling) were a bit vague. And then I turned into Horse Guards Road and there was the distant sound of an incredibly loud live band playing that specific brand of French pop music. I knew I was in the right place. And there were to crowds too, they were a bit of a give away.

I was brave and went on my own. I decided that I would go to the finale as I couldn’t go for long and wanted to make sure that I spent that time well. We are, at Froosh Towers, awaiting the transformation of bump to baby so we don’t like to stray too far from the nest for too long. It turned out to be a great decision.

Just as I arrived at the parade, which was full of people the Little Girl and the Elephant were making their way round the corner from the Mall. I managed to wriggle my way quite near the front as they came past.

It was awesome. It made me feel a bit tearful, actually. There were lots of small children on people’s shoulders (it was the must-have accessory) and I thought I wish I’d seen this when I was a kid and then I realised that it didn’t matter that I wasn’t a kid because it was working the same old magic. It’s nice sometimes to realise that life hasn’t got you trapped in its icy grip quite as tightly as you thought.

Its the Royal Court's fifieth anniversary this year and there are lots of events and galas celebrating fifty years of one of the great british theatres. The Sultan's Elephant goes to show that we, in this country, know nothing about theatre. Timely bit of Arts Council funding there.

Anyway, here are some photos.

And then Elephant squirted water out of its trunk over the crowd and I was so amazed that I forgot to duck like the rest of the crowd and got a bit wet.

See the tiny, tiny people on top of the elephant - that's how big the elephant was. The sultan is the guy in the red hat, I think.

Here's the Elephant, here's his steeple (trunk) look inside and here are the people. That's how it works! I get it. Oh, no actually I don't. Its still amazing.

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