What follows is a travelogue, and if I’m honest its more like tracking our progress more than anything else. It’s the first such accounting in LARPBook as travel to larps has become routine. Fairweather Manor 3 was our first international larp. Making it a more interesting journey. One that also put a few pertinent thoughts in my head. So lets account the travel and consider what was discovered.
Fairweather Manor 3 , is a Nordic larp about life in a grand English Country house during 1917. Of course it’s not run in England. Have the seen the price of hiring a castle or manor in the UK! So were were off to Moszna in Poland. Not really a problem given that flights to Poland are cheaper than train journeys to London (at least for me), these days.
So up at unearthly o’clock and over to Bristol Airport. Normally waiting for a flight isn’t very exciting. But this time we were meeting people in Poland and also other UK players were on the flight. This did not mean wait. This meant checking in and messaging on Facebook, which was a lot of fun.
Then we boarded the plane to Wroclaw. Our gateway to Poland.
It was a mostly uneventful flight (Seriously does anyone ever want an eventful flight?). I say mostly as the landing was full of banking, sliding, bouncing and sliding. The pilot received a much deserved round of applause when we finally came to a halt (and a place on the high score table to boot).
Getting through security was a breeze. LARPBook was in Poland.
Flight schedules had put us in Poland a day earlier than the larp. No problem as Fairweather Manor larp has a very active player community and we had started talking to a group from Denmark and Sweden who had the same problem. They were looking for players to share a hired mini bus. We’d agreed to pay our share so all we had to was meet up with them.
Of our group (the Bus People) we arrived first. So we waited drank coffee and then they were there. By “they were there” I mean one of up had sneaked up behind me and whispered into my ear. First fright of Poland achieved! I am compelled to say that our Bus People were a fantastic bunch. Reinforcing my long held belief that larpers are the most wonderful people.
The bus gave us freedom. Freedom to visit Wroclaw for lunch, a wander and a bit of shopping. Getting into Wroclaw was easy. We followed the signs. For or next phase we elected to use a Sat-Nav. Our hired unit turned out to be the GPS from Hell! It was pretty much impossible to set a destination. Even if the managed the stunning feat of inputting an address. All that would happen is that it would give you directions to something hundreds of kilometres out of your way. We had to abandon using this treacherous little brute. Instead turning to iPad based maps and ultimately the navigator on an iPhone.
Eventually though we were on the Road to Moszna. That curiously had some enormous walls around it as we left Wroclaw. Night fell on the bus as we travelled away from the city, deeper into the Polish countryside. We couldn’t see much as we lost light but occasionally we’d glimpse churches and villages lit for the night.
Then we saw castle Moszna for the first time. More properly I should say Moszna Zamek, if I’m trying to get things right. There were giggles. People said Wow. Moszna Zamek is an impressive and inspirational sight at any time of day.
We had arrived.
Tomorrow the workshops would be run and the day after the larp itself would start.
So here are some thoughts
International travel to a larp is not significantly harder than travelling to a larp in your own country. If you drive it just means the travel time is longer. If you fly, just watch your baggage limits.
Using budget airlines makes travelling to somewhere like Poland is cheap.
When you get there work with other people. Share your knowledge, experience and costs. You’ll have a far better and cheaper trip
Larpers are Larpers. Once you travel abroad you’ll discover that all larpers are fantastic people. This trip both in the bus and in the castle has taught me that the international larp community is full of people that really should be met.