Mud. Lots and lots of mud.
Thick, gloopy, sticky, and slippy all at once, my legs feel very toned after a few days of dealing with it, but hey, what’s a little mud amongst friends?
Glastonbury, for me, is a strange place full of experiences weird and wonderful, of random conversations with friendly strangers, of magical moments of connection, all underpinned by a sense of togetherness, a sense of something good and positive. Given the events that transpired whilst we were away it was a welcome distraction.
Glastonbury is also about performances. Music dominates, but everywhere you turn there is something to catch your eye. It’s a wonderful space, full of diversity and vibrancy.
Alas the mud – the effort of trawling through it at least – meant that my wanderings were more limited than in previous years. I didn’t make it to Shangri-la, nor to Greenfields, and only one wander through the Circus/Cabaret area, with the rest of my time spent wandering from music venue to music venue.
It did mean I caught a lot of acts, but few full sets – John Grant, Madness, ELO and Muse the only acts to get that distinction – but this was no bad thing.
Thursday was a quieter day, a day for wandering and sussing out where the muddiest spots were. It’s also a day for the Heds Party silent disco. It runs from 8pm to 7am and whilst we were virtually first in the queue, we did tap out around 1am, but ohhh it’s such fun!!
Friday saw us go our separate ways which for me meant catching Unknown Mortal Orchestra, White Denim, and Muse. I had planned on more but I’ve given up being too prescribed, so just went with the flow, stopping to listen to a catchy oompa-loompa style folk band at the bandstand, and chilling out whilst I ate some food with a reggae band who’s name I completely missed.
Saturday was a day for more determined wandering. Haelos, Nothing But Thieves, Squeeze, Madness, John Grant, Fatboy Slim and New Order before my legs told me to stop being such an idiot and an early night was called. Still wish I’d been able to get to the Philip Glass Heroes Symphony but c’est la vie.
Sunday brought us ELO (who didn’t bring blue skies but did stop the rain at least), Band of Horses, Of Monsters and Men, Beck, PJ Harvey and Earth, Wind and Fire. And then a nice smooth drive out of a very muddy field (phew) and on past Bristol before 2am!
Now, back to the run of the mill life. A place with indoor toilets, baths, and very little mud. It’s quite nice.
I did watch some of the BBC recordings to see what else I missed and have to admit that there is something charmingly down-to-earth about Adele’s reaction, and that Coldplay do put on a good upbeat anthemic show. It also allowed me to see some of the acts I’d hoped to catch but couldn’t (far too many conflicts!) including Grimes, Guy Garvey, LCD Soundsystem, Roisin Murphy, Aurora, Explosions in the Sky and many more.
The weather was a bit of a dampener for sure, and I wasn’t really feeling right all the way through the weekend but regardless of a dodgy stomach, Glastonbury continues to be a unique experience and, money permitting, I’m hoping to make it back next year and praying that the mud won’t be quite as bad!