Ordinary World

The summit of Lion Rock was flat and calm. We climbed a few last gentle steps to the highest point, then descended a few more to look at a tank of water. To the north we had a magnificent view of cloud, while on both east and west sides the white stuff roiled for miles. Only to the south was there any variation The cloud in this direction was slightly denser and grey.

Quite unlike the aerial shots in the Save A Prayer video then. When that was filmed, the hilltop rose in stark sunlight, and the surrounding forests shimmered below. Two lone figures danced and sang in white.

No-one sang today. Instead a hundred people milled aimlessly, at best doing cartwheels.

Rock from hotel

I began to realise there were a number of anomalies to the music video. No clouds for starters, not one. No other people too. And how did Simon Le Bon keep his suit so white?

Most likely, no-one in Duran Duran climbed up at all. They rode in the helicopter from which they shot the video. Probably the whole site was cleared too. Or filmed very early in the morning before anyone else arrived. If there even were as many visitors then, when air travel was expensive and the global population was only four and half billion.

Gazing skyward

This had to be the difference between the world then – 1982’s youthful dreams – and our more ordinary world now. Or perhaps it was the difference between fantasy and reality, between what we anticipate and what we find.

C’est la vie. Now that’s a pop song too.

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