Trinity’s Mental Health Week got off to a soulful start with an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for largest Soul Train Dance, with the support of Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union, Student 2 Student, Trinity VDP, The Phil and DU Dance. Although the gathering at the campanile definitely didn’t exceed the 427 people required, those present made up for it with sheer enthusiasm. Some were lured by the promise of prizes, such as a Trinity Ball ticket and a goodie bag from the Science Gallery full of unknown treasures, while others relished the chance to show off their dancing in daylight (in turns daring, Daddish and, on occasion, dirty). There were even some who had taken the opportunity to get dressed up in their best 70’s getups, along with wigs that were a good reminder of why the hairdos of that era have, thankfully, not come back into fashion. The group of slightly bewildered tourists press ganged into joining seemed to enjoy themselves too, some taking the opportunity to get a campanile selfie unlike any other.
Although it has to be said that, had the event been better organised, maybe with more effective publicity and possibly at a time when more people were free, the record might have been within reach, the atmosphere of spontaneous fun was one of its best aspects. Despite a brief smattering of threatening rain drops, the sun held out for the whole of the event. Although towards the end it began to feel repetitive and one dancer – who also wanted to know what happened to the free Mooch and Tolteca vouchers – wondered if this was a runaway train she would be stuck on forever, it was certainly a memorable experience, and one that left us all beaming on a day of the week that can so easily get you down.