It was an adventure, the Annie’s were never seen again but then that may have been because the cast and crew retreated en Masse to a new encampment and no more cake was required. Even before they’d left, we had received intelligence of their next possible advance. Almost simultaneously I received a badly coded message from their generals. I say badly coded because it came complete with address and coordinates. It invited me to give myself up for capture the following day. What was I to do? It seemed the only courageous thing was to protect our throng by obeying without question and in order to make sure I upheld all demands and made it look effortless I returned home to sleep, maybe one last time in my own bed and got up bright and early to prepare. A deep cleanse Dead Sea face mask, shaving of legs etc. lengthy hair coifing rituals and painstaking make up routine designed to disguise me as a drop dead gorgeous thirty something . With somewhat limited success I advanced upon the coordinates with the use of my in car GPS which I had never once thought useful in my home county. I was right, it took me to somewhere wholly familiar with but via a route that added nearly eight miles to the journey.
The sentry’s were expecting me it seemed. The tension mounted. I was escorted to a huge trailer where two elderly old crones had succeeded far better than me to disguise themselves as stunningly beautiful young women but then that may have been down to years of training and a seemingly endless array of make up, brushes and technical prowess. I was surrounded by photos of other transformative disguises where dashing young men had been turned into poc marked pirate types with bad orthodontics. For a brief second I wondered if I had been taken prisoner by an entirely different army but then I was escorted to their wardrobe trailer and there it was! A long dark coat, not quite black and it was flanked by an array of waistcoats, tricorn hats and long boots. Opposite was a rail with a selection of earthy coloured long dresses and next to that an Aladdin’s cave of velvets and silks all atopped with millinery heaven! Feathers and bows and veils and brims of all sizes. They had anticipated my arrival and everything had been hoisted up to ten feet in the air so I could look but not touch, play dressing up or indeed rush for my car in a stolen riding habit that would have gaped at every fastening by a couple of feet!
“We’re taking you down now” went the cry.
Without resistance (clearly it was futile and may have messed up my hair!) I held out my wrists for fluffy pink handcuffs but was bundled into a vehicle with three officers, all very high ranking I may add. To add to my confusion one of them shared my first name. I am sure they went an unnecessary route so that I couldn’t replicate it. To my delight on arrival I spotted my posse from an opposing flank, well dug in and hiding themselves by waving like mad and wearing big hats. I think further training on the art of concealment may be required if we survive the campaign. Worryingly the pink coat was nowhere in site. Fangirl Down again I wondered? Where was Margaret? Had she too be captured or perhaps she’d escaped with that turncoat scoundrel Liam!
I was introduced to loads of lovely people who seemed genuinely pleased to meet me ( brilliant acting I thought but then I realised they were crew and just really nice!) and then we walked into a dip to admire the scenery. The scenery in question were two young men going by the names of Harry and Tom. Now, this was also some complicated ruse designed to confuse me as in the Poldark books there is a double act called Tom and Harry ( also with the surname “Harry”,..Winston had run out of names that day) and they are NOT nice people! This pair however were Tom and Harry aka. Sam and Drake, Carne. Confused?… You will be. Tom has the kind of pale green eyes that you think you may instantly drown in, if only you could reach them, ( tall!) and Harry’s shy delightful smile is guaranteed to melt you on sight! I was given a set of “cans” to hear the dialogue over the Atlantic shore break, but in truth I just watched slightly mesmerised as these two paraded up and down the coast path in front of me, torture!
Liam was nowhere to be seen, either with Margaret somewhere south of Bolivia by now, or shot for spying.
The officers led me back up the hill to meet more nice people and take my picture with them. Possibly for their rogues gallery of excluded fans. Gliding towards me was a Titian headed goddess planted to let me know in no uncertain terms that my efforts in hair and make-up that morning were to no avail whatsoever. She too was utterly lovely and just to reinforce this they filmed her looking like something that the Gods had cooked up to torment men and keep women like me firmly in their place. To make sure I got the message they ensured I watched this as long as possible by plying me with delicious food and drink! I mean, how low? How mean?!… And then “Himself”!
Silhouetted on the headland ( tricorn, not quite black full length coat, trusty steed beside him) there was no mistaking him. I was one sentence away from “take me to your leader!”, when it was suggested quite casually that I may like to come and meet Aidan. I tried to make my reply sound casual and disaffected, I think I pulled it off. Inside of course my well hidden heart was pounding and I was secretly wishing I’d sold my house and invested its entire equity in a full face and body lift. When we got round the coast watch building everyone was feasting and making merry and Himself was sitting down taking in the late afternoon sun glinting on the sea. I was proud that we had laid on some spectacular weather for them again!
“Pull up a chair” he said. “…. love your scarf”.
“Thank you, but it wouldn’t go with your costume”……..wtf???? I’m sitting next to Aidan Turner, god amongst men, “Himself”, on one of the most scenic headlands in the country and I refuse him my scarf! What I meant to say of course is ” have it, it’s yours, wear it everyday for a year then send it back to me unlaundered,pleeeease” followed up with ” anything else I can get you?…,Nectar? Ambrosia? (not the rice pudding sort) Fatted calf? Your favourite vaping liquid? Here let me lie at your feet and you can rest those manly boots on my inarticulate awkwardness!”
He was charming and funny and clearly his army adore him! Then just to top it all off he leapt effortlessly aloft his trusty steed Seamus (a Pegasus amongst horses!) and cantered up and down the cliff edge as if he was actually conceived and born on horseback. This is the part where all other mere men of the world groan and slide back behind the sports pages of their papers and stuff their faces with Haribo!
I gazed in some wonder on the sight before me and accepted another sandwich for the proffered platter and promptly inhaled a large piece crust and a slice of tomato. I tried unsuccessfully to muffle the ensuing coughing fit as the cameras were rolling! Oh God, kill me now! God didn’t have to intervene, the death sandwich was apparently doing its worse and the other Karen (a much more important one than me) was exceptionally concerned as I lost my voice and what remained of my dignity. No wonder that I was ushered into one of the first cars to leave set that evening. I was sitting with the delightful Harry with the winning smile as we drove past my posse en route! They were obviously attempting some sort of rescue mission for me! Thanks girls, no need on this occasion but I’ll try and get captured again soon!