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We did go to the bonfire in Rye on Saturday. We usually watch the fireworks from a ways down the road to avoid the crush of traffic, so this was my first (second?) time seeing the procession through the town.

It was awesome! Rye is quite small and hilly, with ancient buildings and little twisty cobbled roads. The parade winds through the town twice before ending in a field by the river for bonfire and fireworks.

It’s all drums and fire and spooky costumes. So much noise. So much fire. I’m amazed nobody goes up like a Christmas tree — all the crews are carrying proper torches, the kind with oily rags on sticks. They throw them down in the road when they’re spent and light new ones, and men with loud rattly metal carts come last, picking up the torches and making bonfires in the carts. Tons of pyrotechnics they let off in the town as they wind through.

Oh, and THIS GUY. The dragon. I was unprepared for him. His head turns side to side, fire shoots out his nostrils, he opens his mouth with a hiss and more fire comes out his mouth. Beautifully done. I’m in love. I circled back around to get video of him, but they dropped him off before the final lap, so no good pictures.

And then the bonfire and the fireworks and it rained like a bastard and we got soaked walking to the car. The end.


Comment from Stark Dickflüssig
Time: November 10, 2014, 10:13 pm


Comment from Mojo
Time: November 10, 2014, 10:52 pm

Was Saint Georgie hanging around as well?

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: November 10, 2014, 11:02 pm

I found a little bit of video of the dragon from last year, but it’s him queueing up. Not belching fire. It’ll give you an idea of his size, though: hisself.

Comment from Stark Dickflüssig
Time: November 10, 2014, 11:28 pm

It’s like burning man with less dust!

Comment from PatAZ
Time: November 11, 2014, 12:39 am

Sounds like a good time was had by all.

Comment from gromulin
Time: November 11, 2014, 2:20 am

…and a .22LR casing found on the roadway makes the news.

Comment from Feynmangroupie
Time: November 11, 2014, 2:24 am

I think the only US city that would allow pyrotechnic activity like that is Ferguson, MO.

Comment from Stark Dickflüssig
Time: November 11, 2014, 2:46 am

Comment from gromulin
Time: November 11, 2014, 2:20 am
…and a .22LR casing found on the roadway makes the news.

What?! They found a fully automatic assault weapon 30-round clip right next to a child?!!

Comment from Mojo
Time: November 11, 2014, 5:05 am

I like that they hung a warning lamp on the dragon’s tail.

And the next float back appears to be being driven by a Clamper.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: November 11, 2014, 5:38 am

You got rained on and didn’t wear your Swiss Army Camouflage poncho?

Comment from SCOTTtheBADGER
Time: November 11, 2014, 6:16 am

The rabbit ears were cute.

Comment from Wolfus Aurelius
Time: November 11, 2014, 4:47 pm

In the video, the dragon procession and the people lining the street remind me of Mardi Gras. Years ago, the night parades used to feature “flambeaux” carriers, young men (almost all of ’em were black) who would carry the torches ahead of and behind the floats, twirl their flambeaux, dance, and scoop up coins thrown to them by appreciative watchers. By the time these parades got to my house, they’d covered some 4-5 miles, but these guys were still energetic.

They’re gone now, I think. The old line Carnival clubs don’t parade as much anymore — long story, having to do with political correctness — and the newer ones have adopted Safety as a watchword, and electric lights for illumination. I guess I don’t blame ’em much. You wouldn’t want to have a papier-mache float with people on board catch fire in the middle of a crowd.

Comment from .
Time: November 11, 2014, 4:57 pm

35 years old and still getting better.

Comment from Mojo
Time: November 11, 2014, 8:19 pm

Totally OT: the mug for Unka B


Or possibly James May. Could go either way.

Comment from Argentium G. Tiger
Time: November 11, 2014, 10:42 pm

This year’s Dragon: Rye Bonfire Procession 2014

Dragon footage starts 40 seconds in.

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