Simon says: ‘You’ll never escape.’

Okay, first thing’s first:

Yes, I haven’t written anything in like two weeks.

Yes, I am ashamed.

And yes, it will happen again. I could make plenty of excuses as to why I Hobbit-holed myself (Well, I am never saying that again.) But the truth is that I’m lazy and up until now, I’ve done well to hide that fact.

But fear not, as I have returned with stories of dark rooms and floating chairs. That’s right folks, I got myself locked in another escape room. This seems to be becoming a problem, and I should probably seek help. I would say it’s because I love working as a team and bonding with people, but in reality I probably have some sadistic dark side that has become BFF’s with my competitive demon.

This time it was with a new company, Lucardo (The name kind of reminds me of that blue ninja – fox Pokemon.) and I had a fresh team: Ian, his brother Ali, and my sister, Ruby. To be honest, I had no faith in us. I thought we’d just end up bullying each-other and the guy would just let us out before anyone died.

Lucardo’s building is pretty scary. You have to press a button to get in, and once you step inside there is what looks like an abandoned reception desk. It looked like a huge corporate company (Wait, are they the same thing?) with white walls and the smell of an empty hospital. I guess you could say it looked apocalypse-y, and you had to climb up a lot of stairs until you found the massive Lucardo sign.

Inside ‘the waiting room’ was nicely decorated, but then black and red are my favourite colours so maybe I’m biased.

The staff were friendly, Luke was our own personal Oversee-er. He was very helpful and clear when giving us clues, though if anything I think maybe he was a little too helpful. Without him, we wouldn’t have escaped, as he gave a lot away, compared to other escape rooms where they would help us through riddles.

So thanks Luke, if not for you and health and safety laws, we would still be stuck in that room.

The room we did was called The Dream, though personally I think it should be called ‘Wasted’ or ‘God, I should not have smoked that.’

The story is basically that you’re dreaming you’ve won the lottery, but to actually win you have to wake up and escape your subconscious, or be trapped there forever. Sort of spooky, sort of random.

Our newfound buddy Luke blindfolded us before leading us into the room, and when we took them off I didn’t know what to look at first. The floating chairs, the sheep (Toys, not real. Though that would have been a twist), the bike wheel or the watering cans full of balls. It was insane.

A few of the decorations were just there to throw you off, which was different to the other escape rooms I’ve done. I also spent a good ten minutes playing Simon says before Luke told me that I was supposed to do that later. I’m glad he told me, because I would have been touching my toes and lifting my arms for the whole hour.

And my team worked surprisingly well. I stood around sounding stupid, Ali and Ian figured out the puzzles and Ruby put the codes into the lock. It was pretty smooth and we escaped with two minutes to spare.

I feel like the room was decorated amazingly, and it has a lot of potential. I think the two problems I had was that the website description didn’t really advertise it well enough, and the numbers don’t really work with the dream theme. Maybe it should be called The Lottery, because saying you’re getting ‘locked in the dream room’ doesn’t sound very PG.

Overall it was a fun experience, and definitely worth a try. I feel like Lucardo is much more suited to families than Breakout, and would be great for kids as well as adults.

We finished our day with a victory Nando’s, and I totally dragged Ruby along to see Hotel Transylvania 3. You can tell from this photo how much fun she had!

40570058_267535130753152_321434532093886464_n

FYI: Yes, I know Ali is prettier than me. Damn him.

Toasties and… torture?

It has been another blazing week since I last wrote, and people have been enjoying the heat in traditional ways, with BBQ’s and beach visits. I, however, spent my day off paying to be locked in a room with my brother and boyfriend.

That’s right folks, my little brother, who is actually a teenager and isn’t very little, came to stay and I thought we’d go to Manchester for the afternoon and do an escape room.

‘But what does that have to do with the delicious sandwich at the top of this post?’ I hear you ask, even though you probably didn’t. And the answer is absolutely nothing, except that it was my brothers dinner at Northern Soul Grilled Cheese. They do delicious mac and cheese toasties for a fiver, and honestly it was so worth it. Jak’s had pulled pork added to it, whereas mine was in a pot mixed with sriracha, sausage and crispy onions. I think my taste buds had a little food orgasm, it was that good.

Anyway, that was the only photo I took through the whole day as I’m very much a ‘live in the moment’ type of person. So, let’s get back to talking about the escape room.

We booked a room called ‘Captured’ as I wanted to do a scary one. I’m a sucker for horror games and basically being scared. I actually find it interesting that humans seek enjoyment from the thing that most species avoid. You don’t see mice going up to cats for the thrill, or fish pretending to flop about on land for a few seconds. We’re so weird.

We were blindfolded and taken to the room, where a video started playing and we took the blindfolds off. We didn’t get very far after that, though I think we were about half way when the timer ran out. The room was Saw themed, and each time we got a clue the jigsaw laugh played, which got a bit annoying when I was stressed.

I won’t go through all the puzzles, because spoilers, but for one of them you had to pull a rope to lift up these little doors. This was the first thing that went disastrously wrong. I went up to the rope, and started pulling on it, and as far as I knew, it didn’t do anything.  But then, from behind me, Ian said ‘The doors are moving! I think they’re giving us a clue.’

But instead of putting two and two together, I just went over to Ian and watched the doors. They didn’t move again, so I assumed my boyfriend was a nutter and went back to pulling the rope. I heard Ian gasp and say ‘Did you see that?’ So I stopped, checked, and nothing was happening. I went back to pulling the rope, this time frowning and getting a bit frustrated. This went on for a while before Jak noticed what was happening, and informed Ian that I was the one activating the doors.

If Jak wasn’t there, I swear we wouldn’t have got past that first puzzle. Which is actually really bad, considering me and Ian live alone together and might start a family one day.  That is not a day the world will ever be prepared for.

We also broke a puzzle, and the woman had to come down into the room and fetch the key for us. We worked terribly as a team, the boys hopping from one puzzle to the other, and not listening to anything I said. I’m aware that what I say most of the time is pretty stupid, but they could have at least tried my guesses when we were stuck.

Basically, I wanted to kill them both by the end of it, and to make things 100x worse we had to run for the train.

I am not a graceful runner, and I was not in a sports bra. Instead I was in skinny jeans, docs and a low cut top. My boobs were bouncing in pain, almost hitting me in the face. I was also out of breath and sweaty, and then the guys decided that since I couldn’t talk through my panting, they would tease and insult me about the whole ordeal.

Overall, I loved having Jak over to stay, even though we do not work well as a team and I feel like I have discovered that me and Ian are as stupid as each-other. Pray for us.