The Real Watership Down Header

'You Can't Imagine it Unless You've Been There',

in May and June 1983.


Sorry, this should be the Crixa from low level.
A rabbit's eye view of the Crixa.
High-res
From chapter 34, 'General Woundwort':

'"At the Crixa, sir." (Campion meant the crossing point of the two bridle-paths, which was about fifty yards away, among the trees.) "Two of my patrol are with him."
Woundwort made his way back to the Crixa. Chervil, being on duty with his mark, remained where he was. Campion accompanied the General.
At this hour the Crixa was all green shade, with red gleams of sun that winked through the moving leaves. the damp grass along the edges of the paths was dotted with spikes of mauve bugle, and the sanicles and yellow archangels flowered thickly. Under an edler bush, on the far side of the track, two Owslafa or Council police, were waiting; and with them was a stranger....'

Sorry, this should be the gate, to hold you in.
A gate, to hold you in.
High-res
Sorry, this should be looking south from the Crixa.
Looking south from the Crixa, toward the iron road.
High-res

You may not have been there but for a few moments try to imagine what it might have been like to have lived in Efrafa.... Then read the words to a song written by Mike Batt for the film. This was to have been sung by Barbara Dickson for Hyzenthlay. It is called 'Run Like the Wind' but it didn't make the final version of the film. Recorded in 1976, Dickson's version finally reached the public in 1982 on her "All for a Song" album. Mike Batt included another version on his 1979 Tarot Suite album, which also included the third song written for the film: "Loosing Your Way in the Rain".

This is one of three songs written
for the film. It would have been the last to be
heard. The three songs date from the first production year of the film, while John Hubley
was still the writer and director. I understand
there were disagreements between Hubley
and Rosen as to what the film should be like.
When Hubley left the project, this song
was one of the things that
effectively went with him.

Hyzenthlay can see things about Watership Down.

'Run Like the Wind', music and lyrics by Mike Batt.

     There's an eagle in the Eastern sky,
     turning in the wind,
     out across the evening,
     resting on the wing.
     If I had the wings of an eagle,
     there'd be no holding me:
     I'd be free, sailing free.

(Chorus)
     And one day soon I'm gonna run like the wind,
     one day soon.
     Gonna break away from everything,
     one day soon.
     Nothing in the world's gonna hold me down
     and nothing's gonna keep me in.
     I'm gonna run like the wind.

     And if you should tell me
     that you want to hold me down;
     before the glow of morning
     I'll be gone without a sound.
     The more you try to keep me in
     the less you will succeed!
     Sailing and free, sailing free.

(Chorus repeats twice to end)

Sorry, this should be looking out from the Near Hind toward the iron road.
Looking out from the Near Hind toward the iron road.
High-res
This is the view from the Near Hind mark holes. In the distance you can see the railway with the arch spanning a track at the bottom of the dip. The ash tree is long gone I am afraid to say, as is the meadow, both swept away by the pressure of intensive agriculture. Probably gone even before 1967 when Adams was writing Watership Down.

This would have been the sight that frustrated Bigwig and tantalised Hyzenthlay. In Efrafa Bigwig was alone yet those he knew and loved were just beyond that railway. It may as well have been ten miles away. It was to be the thunder that gave him his chance to break free from Efrafa, the thunder broke the unseen bonds that held him and Hyzenthlay and the other Near Hind does. The thunder that said: 'Your storm, Thlayli-rah. Use it.'


ReturnClick Bigwig here to return to select another location, and get your paws off Hyzenthlay!