Well after years of planning for zombie apocalypse by hypothesizing about it and watching zombies movies my training was finally over and I was ready. The end of the world had finally come and the zombie apocalypse had started at Daejeon.
Unfortunately the road to judgment day wasn’t so easy. We got the bus station with plenty of time however being a Saturday all the bus tickets were sold out! With no other way to get there we almost gave up but with the aid of a friendly Korean we found out if we got a bus for 40 minutes to another bus station quickly we might be lucky enough to get a ticket to Daejeon from there. So on a whim and a pray we ran to the connecting bus, rode the bus nervously then ran to the next bus station. Luckily we were able to get a bus but it would still be close time wise. So we jumped on the bus and tried to relax.
As soon as we arrived in Daejeon we grabbed a tourist map and taxi and will some gesticulating and miming we were able to get the taxi man going towards the “ice cream cone tower”. Unfortunately the clock was ticking and the rush hour traffic was kicking in. A 10 min cab ride took near half an hour and with only 5 minutes to registration closing were at the front of a huge expo park. So another “amazing race” style run we made it to the starting line. After a quick change and a stretch we were ready to go.
The race started with style with the presenter thanking all the sponsors only to be interrupted by air raid sirens and ambulances. Then breaking news came of a virus that had taken over the city and we were all to flee for our lives. Alas before we could escape zombies surrounded the amphitheater but before eating us they broke into a cracking version of Michael Jackson’s Thriller. After the zombies died from dancing we made a brake to the start line.
We had strategized to go in the second wave of survivors as we thought the zombies would be tired from chasing those toned and sculpted people who cared about their time. Also with all the fatties in our group we stood a better chance of survival. I yelled one piece of advice to our group (being to pro I am!) as the starting horn echoed through the expo centre, “Stay as a group and we will survive”. Now I didn’t do this out of care for my group but for the selfish reason of a human shield!
As we set off I actually had a nervous look around at our surroundings. I had ignored them in the rush to get here. It was the perfect setting for the event. The Daejeon expo centre was made in 1993 and hadn’t been used, maintained or cared for since. There were many unique but derelict buildings to look at as we made our first run. We were all excited and nervous as we rounded the first corning, keenly looking out for zombies and squealing at anything in the afternoon sun. However ever after the first 100 meters we saw our first zombie. Boy was it creepy. Imagine an abandoned building and a zombie nurse dragging herself along the ground trying to claw your face.
While we were distracted looking at her zombies ambushed us from the other side. It was on like Donkey Kong now. Jennie and I made a break for it sprinting down a side path. But that soon stopped when our entire group realized we had put no training in and was coming back to haunt us. It had become a zombie “walk” with indispursed runs. Luckily there was clearly marked zombie zones which were packing with fit zombies looking to kill you. They could only kill you by taking away your 3 life bands that hang by your waste by Velcro.
After recovering from the shock of the first zombie attack we restored our energy and walked to the next zombie zone abed much sweating and panting. We would all be dead if this was a real zombie invasion. Cardio cardio cardio!! Bloody posters told us that we were now entering our first real zombie attack. These zombies weren’t the slow push over zombies but the fit young 20 something zombies who got a kick out of killing us.
Sadly Jennies speed and dexterity couldn’t match mine and she fell behind but she always seemed to make it through. My fighting instincts were kicking in real bad now and however tempting it was to kick or punch a zombie it wasn’t allowed. That doesn’t mean that all my kung fu skills couldn’t be used. I found that all zombies were using the double arm grab to steal my lives. Ha ha ha a simple karate block that redirected both arms usually sent them spinning out of the way. This most satisfying and still technically within the rules just the same there was a few startled yells after they span away.
Jennie not having the same natural gifts for speed and agility as me resulted to devious mind games and tricks to get past zombies. She pretended to be dead or scavenged lives or tricked zombies into giving her lives back. What a devious girl!
Our course took us past abandoned buildings, next to the expo tower, around the alien star craft home, along the abandoned roller coaster, through the run castle, by the old Korean temple, along forest paths and through a Korean graveyard. Best zombie course ever.
We were now entering the final stretch and the last few zombies were the most zealous. Refusing to give up on the prey and even chasing them to the finish line. With a last final dash we made over the line and we can say that we survived the zombie invasion uninfected…. until next year!!
Written by Andrew Batten