Date of attendance: 2004 and 2005
It is hard to sum up the Glastonbury Music Festival in one short blog, but I’m sure as hell going to try. First of all, Glastonbury is not just any ordinary music festival. It is a mind-blowing experience that offers an escape from our everyday mundane lives. A temporary wonder-city that, for 5 days out of every year, conquers the hearts, minds and ears of thousands of festival goers. Every former attendee can testify to the fact that they, even for just one fleeting moment, lived the life of a hippy, and loved it.
What makes Glastonbury differ from many other music festivals is that tickets go on sale before any bands are even announced for the festival. They sell out, and no-one even knows who they are going to see! This tells you that people are going for much more than just the music.
Of course, every year Glastonbury offers up a plethora of behemoth hard hitting bands and many brilliant smaller unknowns spread across numerous stages, with such a diverse range to cater for all tastes. They’ve even got circus acts, comedians, outdoor cinemas, silent discos and themed parties spread around the many ‘streets’ contained within the walls of Glastonbury festival town.
And there’s such a great buzz about the place. Unlike other festivals I’ve been to, everyone is happy, friendly, chatty and willing to just have a bloody great time with you.
Although the main event kicks off from the Friday to the Sunday night, its worth getting there on the Wednesday, not only to secure a good tent spot, but to just let Glastonbury ‘soak in’ before the crowds and the craziness sets in. What a lot of people tend to do is set their tents up in a circle with their mates, keep a small patch of grass in the centre to be used as their own personal ‘chill-out’ zone, chuck some wood in the middle, and get a fire going. There really is nothing like chilling out in deck chairs in front of the fire after a long day, talking rubbish until 3 in the morning (or later).
Of course, Glastonbury does cop its fair share of flak. I have to admit, the constant rain and mud is a real pain, but you learn to live with it and eventually accept it as a part of Glastonbury. The hardcore amongst the crowd actually get into mud fights, ending up covered in it, while others paddle their canoe down flooded ‘streets’ and I once even saw some dudes fishing while relaxing on a floating inflatable couch. I’m not quite sure what they caught, but I know for damn sure it wasn’t fish. The toilets also leave something to be desired, and are some of the worse I’ve ever come across, but I know that they’ve been improving a lot over the years. I always kept my trusty friend Imodium handy. To avoid a toilet catastrophe its better to just plug it up and you’re away laughing.
A few pointers:
Make sure you have a quality tent, or a rubbish one you can leave behind afterward.
Make sure you get there on the Wednesday or Thursday at the latest and get a good tent spot on a hill to avoid a lot of mud or worse, flooding.
Bring plenty of wet wipes. Without showers, wet wipes will become your friend
Bring a flashlight, to find your tent when you stumble home at 4am.
Bring plenty of beers (I once saw a guy bring in a shopping trolley full of beer. Genius).
I’ve got plenty of stories about Glastonbury, and I’m sure some of you out there have too. Feel free to post a comment if you have any questions or just want to reminisce.
Points to highlight: Everything. From the incredible vibe you feel, to the brilliant diverse range of music, Glastonbury is something that everyone just HAS to experience at least once in their lives.
I’ll never forget sitting with hundreds of others in stone circle, scraggy blanket draped over me, watching the sun rise at 5.30am, with hundreds of Chinese lanterns slowly drifting toward the sky..
Would you recommend this festival: Yes
Overall rating: 5/5
By: Luke Falkner