On Monday, RollOnFriday joined thousands of people taking to the streets for the London Legal Walk, a gruelling 10km amble. The aim was to raise money for the London Legal Support Trust, an independent charity which scares up funds for free legal services in London and the South East. This is the story of that momentous 5pm - 7.45pm.
The walk began around the back of the RCJ, behind the bikesheds. RoF James and I decided against stamina-boosting waffles, so I did some groin stretches while he went off to find the cat called Tom Paine who lives in the nearby Seven Stars pub. He failed. Here's Tom anyway though, and yes that is its ruff.
Despite fears it would be a London Legal Swim, the rain stopped, the clouds melted away and it was actually a bit unpleasant walking into the blinding sunlight. Also, RoF James set me a quiz about London which was infernally difficult, boring and almost drove me to seek free legal services myself. Try it now
! These negligent officers refused to arrest him.
The massive traffic jams caused by 9,000 walkers using the same pedestrian crossing provided some distraction, as did this dog sporting a natty T-shirt-and-nappy combo.
Maybe it wasn't a nappy. Anyway, before that could be investigated, two legal aid warriors dressed as hedges shuffled into view.
Having not got the memo, they are still posed as a bush in Green park, waiting to assault a Chris Grayling who will never come.
Before we knew it, we were striding through Middle Temple, where a canny clerk had realised that the passing trade that evening might willingly take his rubbish away for him.
Armfuls of EC law and Arbitration books would have weighed us down too much, though, and the McDonalds bag was empty so we carried on.
Just round the corner it became clear that someone else had gotten wind that thousands of legal types would be in the vicinity, and parked their van accordingly.
But it wasn't just canny tradesman indulging in sharp practices. About 3k along the route, we stumbled across this cheat:
For some reason everyone was too polite, or stunned, to raise an objection. It took us another 20 minutes to overtake Lance Armstrong, but when we did we were gratified to see that she had abandoned her scooter and was being carried by a member of her support team, whether due to exhaustion or a comedown from massive doses of injected red blood cells it wasn't clear. Nonetheless we immediately notified the stewards.
Then this guy was hilarious.
Look at him! He doesn't care that he can't chew off his stitches which he got after doing something awesome. He's just happy to be out!
Pure, stupid joy.
A moment of reflection followed as we passed the mass graves of walkers who fell during the 2014 campaign.
This year's corpses had been more hurriedly covered.
Their mounds will be landscaped more attractively in time for 2016's event. It was a moving reminder of the reason we were presumably walking.
Well aren't you the cutest legal walker!
High spirits were restored by this proud little fella, and with the sun on our backs and a song in our hearts, we raced home, though this team's t-shirts gave us pause.
The dripping font didn't make much sense until we saw the acronym printed on the front, which looked even weirder.
From there we were cheered home by the stewards, embarrassing because we were only walking. And before we knew it we had completed the walk. With free drink tokens raining down like confetti, more incompetent
hacks would have forgotten to take any photos of the scenes of celebration, but not RoF:
If you want to find out more about the London Legal Support Trust's fine work, click here
. On another more serious note, the street party featured a Delete Blood Cancer UK stall set up with the help of criminal barrister David Herbert. David was recently diagnosed with a blood cancer, Acute Myeloid Leukaemia, and you should really find out if you can help David or someone like him by checking if your blood is eligible for donation
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