This was unexpected and to my everlasting shame – I didn’t have a camera.
While I was staying in the center of the city, we often had to run up and down the six flights of stairs to let people into the building. The buzzer was broken or non-existent, I’m not sure which. One warm afternoon – on one of these doorman runs – I got caught up talking to Kate in the entryway to the building. She was complaining about a rave happening in Old Town Square which blocked her route home. Then I noticed a the uncharacteristic throbbing bass coming from the square… which was getting louder.
Moments later; an enormous, soviet troop-transport vehicle rolled around the corner, drawing a rag-tag mob behind it. The truck’s bed was roofed with canvas and it’s tail was blocked by gianormous speakers, blasting that fantastically loud bass. The sides of the truck were built from the wooden slats and topped with barbed wire – to protect the team of grotesquely costumed DJs working from within.
Dancing in tow behind the truck came a few-hundred ravers, dressed in ridiculous costumes and fueled by strange substances – like a drug addled Halloween parade led by the Pied Piper of Prague. Here, it should be duly noted that amongst this scene it’s popular to shave your head leaving only a handful of dreads on the very back – like a tail. Also, to gauge your ears until a golf ball can fit into the gapping hole.
Once the first group passed, it was followed by a van and another group of ravers – dancing as the marched along the street. And then another group. Then another. All told, the moving rave seemed to contain no less than twenty vehicles – each DJing to a different music to a different group of dancers. Whenever a DJ-van would stop it would set off the alarms of the surrounding cars – like the vehicles were getting into the scene and trying to pitch in some noise to the madness. All the sudden the street – which moments before was a cobbled, 19th century fantasy – was a wild party: with dancing, whooping, drinking lunatics having fun on the go.
It took about forty minutes (and my attention span) for the storm to pass. But as I was retreating back into the apartment building to seek refuge from the noise, the metal door in the entrance hall picked up the vibrations of the bass so well that it sounded like a dozen people were banging on the door in time with the music (begging me to join them). To add another brick to my wall of everlasting-shame, I didn’t and I never found out exactly where that rave went.