Isn’t it surprising how many marches there are in the centre of Sofia these days? I am not talking politics here. I am talking roads.
What’s the running score on twisted ankles, do you reckon? Up in the hundreds? Maybe this is what is proclaimed on some of the banners held high! Others perhaps offer even more detailed stats, as in American Football. ‘With 14 down and who knows how many to go, we have had 33 great assists and two stretchers so far on this march and there’s still Parliament Square to negotiate!’
Yes, the big challenge about staging a demonstration on the hoof in the capital is the state of the merciless streets themselves. Which presumably is why there is now a trend for people to protest in more novel ways rather than just to march up and down the darn things any more.
Like drive up and down the darn things instead, as did the herd of farmers and other country folk who came to town a while back to market the odd grouse. Came up to town minus any wine growers, that is. Maybe fuelled up on their own stash, those lads took a wrong turn just outside Veliko Turnovo and currently can be found halfway through Romania pickled in a ditch? Anyhow, clearly aware of the state of the roads, the agricultural stalwarts that did make it to Sofia wisely came on their tractors.
The only surprise was that they didn’t bring some muck spreaders along too, but then again what would have ‘bin’ the point? Who’d have noticed?
The good old boys in blue also took a clever tack. They decided to literally smoke out a pay rise. Unfortunately "happiness wasn’t a cigar called Hamlet" on that day, however, and so their tobacco wasn’t the only thing to go up in smoke. Thus the police gathered once again, this time for a "quiet drink". Was the clear liquid in the water bottles something more spirited though? Was that why the quiet drink turned into a punch-up? Whatever gents, power to your elbows for the creative zing in your thinking!
In the same vein, I take my hat off to the chemists of the capital. Recently they staged a 10 minute walk-out about some headache or other. Or that was the idea. Only most pharmacists are so barricaded into their shops by glass partitions that they couldn’t actually get out at the right moment, and hence had to stay put. Which made the point much better methinks, as a sit-in is a well understood way to protest, a sit-out is more of a barbecue isn’t it? Again this was a shrewd move by organisers, a fine bit of lateral thought.
Anyway, as we get closer to the election, here’s hoping that whatever gripe of choice folk protest about, they don’t lose their sense of humour. Gum up the streets by all means, but at least do it with a smile on your faces. That way the grins will also remain on everyone else’s!