Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Glastonbury Diaries 2016

First of all, it wasn't really that muddy and it is what everyone raves on about it being the best place in the world.

Glastonbury was during the Brexit build-up and anticipated result weekend as well as being Pride week the week itself was always going to be a bit of a big one anyway. Add in some of the best musicians in the world and most amazing talent on offer it's pretty much going to be amazing without fail. We chose to stay from the Tuesday to the Monday so nearly a week of camping which turned out to absolutely fly by. Although the music doesn't properly start until the Thursday there's endless things to keep your time more than occupied. From exploring underground caves, secret raves and silent disco's time sort of loses itself and is completely irrelevant as soon as you pitch your tent or in our case unpack. 

We decided to pay extra for a tent to be already set-up for us and we got the luxury of clean toilets and showers to use. Although you may laugh and think thats not the real Glastonbury I have no regrets. The car park was also five minutes away from the campsite which as you can imagine carrying a week's worth of alcohol and a solid twelve outfits, three pairs of shoes and all the other random stuff I decided to take with me, was ideal. Being able to shower and have time in front of a mirror to make myself look decent made me feel ten times better. If you're looking to go to any festival and want that little bit of extra cleanliness then Tangerine Fields is the place to be. Honestly so worth the money and you get your own blow up bar dome for the people in the campsite which is pretty cool.

The first night we arrived we ended up in the Greenpeace fields around a fire in a tent with unlimited tea and a really comfy sofa that I'm sure was slowly sinking into the mud. We had a little wonder around and found a treehouse bar and I bumped into a guy I go to uni with who was also wondering about and was the strangest moment seeing him. Two wanted to go home and two (one was me) wanted to stay out and continue exploring random caves and a giant cube than was a rave but we went home and to be honest it was the right decision.


THURSDAY: Our first full day included climbing up the giant hill to take a photo with the actually not that big GLASTONBURY sign made from recycled materials. You feel like it's the iconic Hollywood sign when you're up there and you can see the whole festival in all its glory and beauty. Giant tipi's looked like little white triangles in the very far distance and you could see the perfect lightning strike tribute to Bowie amongst the fields filling up with tents and flags flying proudly. After taking a load of photo's and taking a seat to enjoy a lukewarm cider on the hill we continued our exploring to find food. There's hundreds of food stalls and I don't think I saw the same stall twice over the whole festival. Anything you want they have from Welsh oggie's (still don't know what they are) to thai food and a fresh sushi bar, it's all there. We galavanted for hours getting our bearings and headed back to the tent to enjoy the sunset over the fields and headed back into the main fields. A lot of drinks and mud wading happened, we watched MURA MASA for bit and watched over the Beat Hotel which was literally piled with people.


FRIDAY: Last night whilst I got food Pamela fell off her blow-up bed. I'm not just talking accidentally slipped off I'm talking full on pinged off onto the middle bit after trying to jump on it. This was hilarious and even though I wasn't there to see it I'm still laughing now thinking about it. Waking up hangover free was delightful however waking up to read that we're out of the EU wasn't. Although it was a bit over cast and threatening to rain we were so ready to just get up and go. The showers were free and no queue to I scooted in there, headed back to make myself look festival ready (cue space buns and an entire tub of glitter) and headed back to the tent. We poured unacceptable amounts of alcohol into pouches and water bottles to prepare for the day and I carried a bag of wine. We saw James in the morning who was the first person to talk about the referendum results and he shared his sorrow for the youth of Britain but encouraged us all to stay strong which even though we were standing in a field with thousands of other people made me feel a bit safer when everyone was cheering around me. When you're at Glastonbury you feel like you're in this safe bubble and that nothing on the outside can touch you. You have no worries or fears the whole time you're there and I can say it's the best feeling I've had in a long time. I felt so at peace with myself. After that we headed over to see Blossoms who were without a doubt nothing but beautiful. They're heartwarming tribute to Viola Beach which made it extra special. As an up incoming band they definitely put on a show worth seeing and a crowd more than up for a dance which we provided. We again galavanted around peering into every other tent to see what's on and slugged through the mud to the Pyramid stage to see the end of Skepta which was a good time filler but I was very confused as to why there were so many people riding bikes on the stage. Two drink pouches down already and half a bottle of a sea green concoction Two Door Cinema Club were on and it was raining. Dancing followed suit and the ponchos came out for the first time. After hitting the dab way too many times we decided to head over to see Jack Garrat who was surprisingly in the John Peel tent when after seeing him he deserved to be on a main stage. From watching him you can see he puts in his absolute all into his performance and he was absolutely cheesing with himself. He couldn't help but thank the crowd and his parents who were watching in the wings for helping him get to where he was and he deserves to be that smug guy he comes across as. I also managed to get onto the main screens somehow and I look like a total tube but I got very excited and I'm pretty sure Jack himself saw me a giggled. If you watch it back I'm the girl with the space buns totally freaking out because I can see myself on the screen. After being totally exhausted dancing and enjoying every minute of it we ended up back at the Pyramid stage to see Foals who had an absolute gem of a show. From start to finish they were there to impress and I loved every minute (both the music and their beautiful bodies). So after Foals we went for food and a quick pee before wiggling back into the crowd to see Muse which I'd like to add aren't my favourite band but I heard they are one of those bands you just need to see to experience in life. This was an incorrect statement.


Between me and a friend, he blanked out about an hour of the set and all I wished was to be at Disclosure the whole time. I think if you were a massive Muse fan it would have been utterly amazing but I wasn't and I didn't really enjoy it. But at Glastonbury you can't always get what you want when there's a 20 minute sludge through the mud to get to another stage in time to probably only catch the end of a final song. After a not so exciting headliner we rushed as best we could to go see our DJ Queen Annie Mac. SHE WAS BRILLIANT. We danced into the early hours of Saturday morning, I fell into the mud because my feet got stuck dancing, couldn't get back up so sat quite content until a man in a poncho pulled me out and I saw tiny little hot air balloons as lanterns in a hidden forest.

SATURDAY:  We woke up disappointingly late and missed a couple bands we planned on seeing which was annoying but after a giant cheese toastie and a trusted bacon baguette we were off on a total mission to make today a big one. We're still laughing about Pam falling off the bed and I fear we'll never stop. With a bottle of homemade infused Gin, pouches at the ready and a bag of wine from yesterday we never drank we were totally set. We saw Lapsley first and she provided the edgy sweetness we needed to start the day and along with a cold freshly brewed beers it all went down fabulously. After a wonder around we found ourselves in the Pussy Parlour to see SG Lewis who was one of my highlights of the whole weekend. Such a chilled vibes guy but I can honestly say I was everything but chilled vibes because only Niall bloody Horan from bloody One Direction was in the crowd less than a meter in front of me. Now, anyone that knows me well enough understands I rather enjoy One Direction and this was a very exciting moment for me. I'm saying no more because I'll just embarrass myself but I did call my friend right after and I was very happy and excited for a long time and still am. So after that we walked to get more cold beer and I was still very much high on life. We went to the Pyramid Stage and planned to stay there for the foreseeable evening. 

The Last Shadow Puppets were as seducing and sexy as I'm sure you can only imagine but seeing the way Alex Turner and Miles Kane look at each other did something to me I can't describe. It's like seeing absolute perfection in real life but a thousand times better. Then we finally opened the wine which was actually not as warm as you would imagine and we cheered to such an amazing weekend so far. Followed by some delightfully infused Gin and Malibu Tame Impala came on and a little rainbow appeared which gave the crowd a lot to be excited about. We started to wiggle forward and as it got darker we started to play the name game which actually became a very major part of our weekend whilst waiting for bands to come on. Except you will soon realise there isn't that many celebrities with their first name starting with W or N. What happened next I can only describe as one of the most emotional moments I've ever had. Given that I'm already a pretty emotional person being able to see someone who hasn't only made me realise it's ok to be sad sometimes but has always been there to sing what I want to say this was pretty major for me.


 Adele was perfect. I can't say anymore that would justify her listening to her voice. She's hilarious, witty and real. Although I was laughed at a lot by my own friends and surrounding people I cried the whole way through it but it was so so surreal. Her voice is somehow even better in person and even more moving to listen to. If you've ever seen her live you'll understand. If you haven't please do because she's so capturing to watch. After being an absolute emotional mess and getting myself together we headed to the beast that is Arcadia. This is crazy. It's a giant spider that shoots out fire and lasers whilst a DJ stands inside it and plays the best set to a huge field of people. There was so much fire, so much dancing and I ended up being on the water. Probably from dehydrating myself after crying so much.


SUNDAY: It rained a lot. But not that heavy rain just misty rain that gets you soaked without realising it. Because it was our last day we attempted to make a total day of it so got up early, caked on the glitter and headed straight to the main site. We watched Catfish and the Bottlemen (DID WE ?) who I never really listened to before but they're total indie heaven with a little bit of a heave edge to them which I was all over by the end of it. In the afternoon we saw Years & Years and they were so so beautiful. Ollie made such an inspiring speech about equality and love I honestly don't think there was a dry eye in the crowd. Also as a side note: I was totally mesmerised by Ollie's incredible multicoloured cape he wore. It was amazing and you need to google it ASAP! We also went to see a great guy called Michael Kewanuka who's voice was exactly what you needed on a rainy Sunday afternoon. His little babies were running about the stage area too and he invited them to join which was so heartwarming to watch. Whilst we sucked up the rain I ate the best noodles I've ever had and I can't remember the name of the van but they were so so so good. The tempura veg that went with them too was the best tempura ever.

Cold beer was a necessity today to keep us going and because it was the last day we decided to treat ourselves to ice-cold beverages which were surprisingly very fairly priced. After this we went to see Craig David who I can hand on heart say was one of my highlights. He was insane and there's no other words to describe it. Although he was in a tent that was far too small for him we were in the huge overspill sinking into the mud, in the rain and didn't stop dancing for a good hour. He played all the classics and played a crazy DJ set and did all the best covers both old and new. The atmosphere was pure excitement and there wasn't one person there who didn't know every line of every song he sang and played. Everyone was so up for a good time it just made that hour one of the best moments of the whole weekend. We met a group of girls who has been pitched up for a while waiting for him and I was glad to see they were carrying bags of wine too. After Craig we ventured to the Pyramid Stage and en route picked up free willow stalks to plant at home and followed a secret flower path through hundreds of tents. We grabbed a couple more drinks and attempted to wiggle our way through the crowd to try and at least see the stage. Even though Coldplay got a bit of bad press when it was announced they were headlining it felt like everyone across the whole campsite was there waiting in anticipation. Foals came on and we had a little dance and finished off the infused Gin from last night. As a band Foals have this ability to make you feel like they're playing to you and a few friends. They talked as if they were playing to a little gig down the pub, danced about obviously enjoying every minute of it and played an amazing set that was perfect prep for what was coming. Again we waited and waited till the Coldplay came on, playing our favourite name game with anyone who was keen to join until they came onto the stage. From start to finish it was perfect. I can't say much more than if you've never seen them live and you're not a massive fan and unsure it's 100% worth every minute. The effort and love as a band they put into every song was unbelievable. Even the classics 'Yellow' and 'Clocks' they played as if it was the first time they played them to us. Chris Martin has a talent to make you feel like you're sitting in his living room just chatting one-on-one and you feel so special being able to be a part of something so creatively stunning. Their tribute to Viola Beach was so touching and a perfect gesture from the whole of Glastonbury. I obviously cried and various moments throughout the performance but it was a bit of a blur because I was trying so hard to take every second of it in. Coldplay are a band who play big gig songs and know you'll sing every word to it but they're so humble and so genuinely grateful I felt a part of something really special whilst they played. Unfortunately I had a few too many because I got far too excited watching Coldplay and it all caught up on me from the whole weekend we had to make our way back to the tent. We had planned to adventure to the hidden caves or Arcadia but instead my loving friends took me back to the tent. I hope to my beautiful friends reading this you'll forgive me for cutting Sunday short! When we got back to the tent Pam decided that getting into bed was far too much of a hassle so tried her hardest to sleep with her legs out the tent because her wellies wouldn't come off but Grant came to the rescue and pulled them off. Don't think that this wasn't another Pam flying off the be moment because it was another hilarious moment and I'll never forget the image of Pam's little legs peeking out the tent.

Across the whole weekend there were a lot of emotion shared from speeches about Brexit, equality and me just breaking down at Adele. People spoke about things they truly cared about and people listened. I felt so inspired and happy the whole time because you let go of every inhibition and worry. For those 5 days i've never felt so free before. So many memories were made and I saw so much good music it was totally worth all the planning and saving. If after reading this you're even thinking a tiny bit about going please please do. You'll never experience something so unbelievably great unless you go. The headliners believe it or not are such a small part of the weekend. From healing fields to finding glitter in tiny tents its the best place in the world with so much to offer you. I cannot express my utter love for Glastonbury and what it does for and to people for the 5 days I was there. I saw so much happiness and spending it with my favourite people made it so much better.

PS: Pam falling off the blow up bed is still funny.


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