The 30 year old festival virgin

Picture courtesy of Jade Knowlden.
Picture courtesy of Jade Knowlden.
Yep, that’s right. I have managed to get to the grand old age of 30 without ever having camped at a weekend festival. I did go to T in the Park when I was a teenager, but only for the day. In fact, when I say ‘without ever having camped at a weekend festival’ I could actually shorten that to ‘without ever having camped’. Yep, even worse, I know. I have no memory of ever sleeping in a tent. Up until now, that is.

This weekend I went to Fieldview Festival in Chippenham. The festival itself was founded by the Cameron brothers, who started it as an annual summer party for themselves and their friends, but has since grown to become the biggest little festival in Wiltshire. I guess you could say it was an education, so here are a few things I learned.

  • It is very hard to get into a sleeping bag when you’re drunk.
  • Glitter really does get everywhere. I’m still finding it in incredibly random places…
  • I seem to be able to sleep through quite a lot of noise; we slept about 100 metres from the main stage (and I’m too old to party from midday till 4am).
  • Complete strangers will start to feel like your best friends. This was a small festival, so people you met on the first night would undoubtedly cross your path again (with the exception of the very attractive man I met on the first night, who promptly disappeared into thin air and was never seen again. So if you happen to know a 34 year old property developer named Steven who resides in the Knowle area of Bristol, let me know…)
  • You will find it difficult to differentiate between tan lines and what is actually just ingrained dirt…

muddy feet

  • I will happily pay £5 to charge my phone in the knowledge that the money is going to charity. In fact, all profit from the Fieldview Festival is donated to various charities.
  • The bands and performers integrate with the other festival goers and in my eyes adopted a kind of celebrity status… I won’t pretend I wasn’t a little excited to realise that our camping neighbour was the sax player from Killamonjambo.
  • Bumbags are quite possibly the best invention ever. I may start wearing mine on a daily basis. They are work appropriate, right?
  • Let’s not forget the importance of dry shampoo. 
  • It’s perfectly acceptable at a festival to crack open the cider/beer straight after breakfast.
  • It’s very important to remember to bin the baby wipes after you’ve had your baby wipe wash. No one wants to accidentally come across that later in the day.
  • A weekend that consists of 80s attire, blow up flamingos named Flavia, pineapples with sunglasses, cups with clips that attach to your belt, halloumi wraps and veggie chilli nachos, beer, cider, rum, wine, taking selfies with bands while they are on stage in attempt to win a bottle of homebrew beer (See pic below, we didn’t win), staring at hot man because you can’t not stare at him, speed dating in a field, tug of war, sack races, hip hop classes where a student apparently became the teacher, giant nets, hula hoops, flowers, tropical head dresses, giant juice cartons, wasps (maybe not so much the wasps), drinking rum out of a giant ceramic jug, dancing barefoot in the grass, taking shadow pictures, where the sun always shines and the people are friendly and chatty and hangovers don’t last longer than the time it takes to brush your teeth…

I loved you Fieldview, I’m so glad you were my first and I am definitely coming to see you again next year.

Pic courtesy of Juliet Austin and featuring Goodnight Lenin.
Pic courtesy of Juliet Austin and featuring Goodnight Lenin.

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