Quick work saved me - Womad man

05:01, Mar 18 2012
tdn anda
Quick thinking from bystanders helped save a Womad performer from serious injuries when he was burned during a cooking demonstration

Quick thinking from bystanders helped save a Womad performer from serious injuries when he was burned during a cooking demonstration on Friday, the festival's opening night.

Nars, of the Mongolian band Anda Union, said he could not believe how many strangers came to his aid when the accident happened.

"The doctor said the emergency part was done so well, the first 20 minutes with everyone pouring water on me.''

Speaking through an interpreter backstage before the band's Saturday night performance, Nars said it all happened so quickly he had no time to be scared.

He was performing in the Taste of the World tent while other band members cooked behind him.

While "steaming Mongolian bowls'' for the traditional fare, a pan of boiling water was accidently knocked over his shoulder and spilled over his neck.

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"At that moment I just felt a sting and then hot gas goes up from my shoulder. At that moment I thought 'argh''', he said.

After "two seconds'' he took off his clothes so the wounds could be treated.

His arm was heavily bandaged on Saturday night when the Daily News caught up with him, and he had the dressing changed earlier in the day after performing during a workshop.

"I had it changed, it was yellow and watery after (the performance).''

He said he could still play his musical instrument but the doctor had advised him not to get too sweaty - a difficult task for him.

"At concerts I get so much sweat, so I put a towel on to stop the sweat now.''

Nars said he was grateful to the people who had helped him, but also that he was wearing a big jacket that helped limit the water's spread.

At first he was afraid he would be burned right down to his feet.

"If wearing no jacket, I can't even imagine...'' he said.

Due to get married in December, he was also glad the boiling water didn't touch his face.

And the experience had ensured Womad New Zealand and New Plymouth had left a very deep impression, he said.

"I will never forget it,'' he said, with a smile.

As for cooking, he didn't even need a translator to confirm if the experience had put him off whipping up any dishes in the future.

"No,'' was the emphatic answer.

"I can make very delicious food, it was just an accident.''

Nars said he found the nature in New Zealand very beautiful, and the people here protected it well.

Mongolians were nomadic people who depended on nature so they could identify with it, he said.

A sound technician from Womad stayed up late on Friday night welding a guard to the front of the stage in the Taste the World tent to avoid further accidents.   

Taranaki Daily News