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. . . I looked around me at the folk who were stood and sat all around within the huge circle in the centre of Stonehenge. The usual array of stoners, hippes, bikers, witches and druids were my companions that morning.
But one group caught my attention. They were seven or eight young men, about my age (I was 22 at the time), and they looked very happy and excited. They werre about 15 feet away from me. They all had long and well-washed hair, (neatly trimmed,) and were clan shaven. Their clothes were soft leather jerkins over leather trousers and moccasin style knee length boots, some were in brown, some in grey, and almost all their clothes were identical. The clothes were stitched with strips of leather too, but done with twists and knots that made them look superb.
Some carried long staves, slender and decorated with plaited leather sections. The wood was polished - not varnished. Some of the guys sat on the smaller stones, which others lounged about beside them, they stood idly chatting, laughing and grinning at each other, almost as if they had got into a major cup final - for free. They pointed things out on the campsite to each other, nodding approval at the tents and banners. They were clearly elated, and really very pleased with what they saw.
I watched them for about ten minutes, marvelling at the similarity of their clothes and the wind blowing their long hair about. I imagined they were some kind of back-to-nature bikers, probably with a keen interest in advanced leathercraft...
Then I looked away for a few moments to look at the druids, and when I looked back, the group of guys had vanished. Completely. But the space where they had stood and sat, was empty - though we were all hard packed together within the stones. Other people moved to stand or sit where they had been. A few people were looking puzzled, but in that atmosphere (after a long night of psychadelic excess) I guess they just thought they were gettting some kind of flashback or something.
I personally wasn't wrecked or stoned, and was even reasonably sober.
I've never mentioned this since to anyone except my wife. But Big Steves account of meeting the 'one eyed man' brought the whole scene into focus again for me. Twenty five years on, I can still clearly see those guys in my minds' eye, and still feel their great sense of elation and deep love for the festival. I wrote reports of that years' festival for several music magazines that I was contributing to at that time, and while I was tempted to mention the incident with those guys, common sense dictated that my editors would probably scrap that section as being just too way out...
I wonder if anyone else remembers them appearing/dissapearing that cool morning? Were/are they the Guardians of the Stones? Travellers from another age or dimension? I have no idea - just a lot of conjectures and theories. But one thing is for sure - they were absolutely loving the event!