No, that guy isn’t watering those thorns in the hope that they’ll suddenly come back to life, though the sprinkling probably has some sort of ceremonial or religious significance. Can you see what’s coming, kids, as the rest of this ritual unravels? Needless to say, to most eyes outside that circle of people, this will look like one weird custom. Painful too.
That’s got to hurt and the guy is still only under Starter’s orders. A pain in the butt gets you every time. Everyone is pretty psyched though. The guy in grey looks up for it, while the dude behind is pointing at us like he’s not happy. Maybe it’s his camera.
And he’s off! Face to the thorns for the first time – and those things are sharp. The nerve endings must really know something is up. Meanwhile, the crowd goes wild; and the Starter guy is certainly enjoying himself. Notice red and pink are all the rage.
First roll onto the back and even the Starter seems to feel the pain. Children in the background are standing on stuff to get a better view, though people on the right have backed off now. Only the little girl in red there looks like she’s seen it all before.
Now that’s a face bearing more than just an ounce of pain. Still, he should be proud: he’s done one complete roll and gotten a fair way down the track. The guy in grey is actually unmoved by it all, but now the girl in red looks slightly shocked. Aww.
The Starter has stepped in and it seems like the bottled water serves a practical purpose as well. Let’s hope it’s easing the pain. At least it’s finally got a reaction out of the guy in grey; but we really need it to give our guy a second wind.
Everyone seems to be stepping up now to give encouragement to the man. That’s as cool as we hope the water is; he looks like he needs all the help he can get. Have you noticed he’s wearing socks but no shoes? He’s definitely in a lot of pain now too.
OK, this isn’t funny any more and that cut is definitely no joke. It makes you wonder what inspires such practices. Rites the world over show that people will endure all kinds of pain in the name of cultural and religious ideas.
Woah, look at that shoulder – and the guy just keeps on rolling. You can sense the temperature has upped a notch among the watching crowd. There are a lot of cameras out but, hey, if nothing else it sure is a spectacle.
It’s reaching fever pitch out here now folks. The Starter seems to be performing some kind of invocation, perhaps summoning strength for the guy. Lordy, those thorns must hurt a back that’s already in bits. Pain becomes agony…
Some solace that one more thorn in your side probably doesn’t make much difference when you’re already in a world of pain. It’s difficult to know what to make of the whole thing, but if belief is involved it’s a thorny issue.
Let’s just hope the guy made it to the finish line. His skin is simply shredded; it has to be time to throw in the towel even if he didn’t quite get there. If anyone knows more about this ritual, let us know. Till then, give us hot coals and nose piercings any day.