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Strange alliances
Originally uploaded by she_who_must

This year the Big Meeting - the ">Durham Miners' Gala - fell on Bastille Day, though none of the platform speakers seemed aware of this. We followed the banners down to the race course under a slate grey sky, expecting rain at any moment, visited a variety of stalls, bought second-hand books and miscellaneous postcards, sampled the Co-op's fairly traded rosé (Chilean merlot, very nice), then gravitated to the platform in time to hear the speakers.

The wind roared in the amplification and made it hard to hear some of the earlier speakers, but gradually the skies cleared, and the speeches improved in both audibility and oratory, until I found myself listening to Dennis Skinner's knockabout routine, lying flat out on the grass under a blazing blue sky.

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