I dropped him again near a train station and headed back to Alexandra Park for Round Two, expecting locked gates and jobsworths and not being disappointed.
At Gate 1 I told them I was a steelband booked to play in the park. The kind security lady told me I couldn't come into the carpark and that I should have got there before 11 a.m. That I had just driven over from Leeds washed over her. I drove round a bit and found a parking space close by. That was a parallel park and a half! Quite cheered me up.
I phoned Damien, and the other four players and I found each other. Yes, four: Wanda, Vicky, Kirsty and Yi Bai. Eventually Damien got us into the carpark [quite enjoyable] but driving to the performance spot was not happening. Here's Wanda wheeling the music down, and below Vicky lining up cases on the set back down.
But then it was a kinda magic. People came up and played our tambourines. One lady brought her own cowbell. People danced and a visitor from Blackpool phoned up later to book us there, and said we were the "jewel in the crown". The film-maker rushed off to get a new battery, and then we hugged a bit. He said [oh why did I think I would just remember their names], "I was looking around the arena, thinking where are the steelbands and here you are."
Anyway Yi Bai braved the van journey back with me [it was Gary yesterday], and I only had a ten-minute panic attack coming out of Rochdale, and Yi Bai didn't even notice.
From here down it's just pictures.