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Glastonbury 2007

Be In The Place- And get off your face!

Actually, I didn’t get off my face. What’s the point in going to the best festival in the world and not remembering it afterwards? I don’t get that mentality.

Anyway, my review of Glastonbury 2007: Wow!!! I would go so far to say this was the best one I’ve ever been to (except possibly 1995). For years with the line-up steadily getting worse each time, this year it was finally pretty decent. Still a lack of big American names (with the exception of Iggy and the Stooges), but they certainly got the best of British.

The weather. In some weird premonition thingy, both my hubby and I had strong feelings it was going to be a wet one. He even bought himself a pair of ugly waterproof over-trousers, which is a very big step beyond cool for him. I’d bought some too; though mine were a very nice looking soft-lined hiking trousers that I purchased as a bargain from e-bay. We also bought a pop-up shelter by Quechua, which turned out to be a pretty nifty buy. (Mini review: Cost £20 from Decathlon – a brilliant outdoor sports shop at Lakeside, Thurrock. It folds into a lightweight flat bundle, and literally pops out when you undo it. More tricky to fold it down again, but we’d had practice with a similar style Tweenies tent! It has a zip up doorway and actually I’ve been looking for something like this for ages for wetsuit changing on the beach. It proved waterproof overhead, but slight mud seapage through the back floor seam. Overall, very impressed.) When it was raining through a pyramid stage act, we set it up at the top of the hill where we could see the screens easily. The kids kicked off their wellies and sat in the back and Chris and I sat at the front with our army boots sticking out in front. This worked very well indeed.

We also bought 4 mini fold-out camping chairs. (£5 each, also by Quechua from Decathlon). Officially designed for kids (unfortunately boring navy though, not cool colours), but they stood up to our weight, which was waaaaaaaaay over the amount specified on the label! They folded into a bag and were light enough for even the kids to carry around with them all day without complaining. We couldn’t have done without them. The adult sized ones are just too heavy; but chairs are essential at a muddy festival. By far the worst thing about the mud is the fact that you can’t sit down in it. Trudging through mud and then standing around is impossible on Chris’s feet and my back. You could set these up in mud though and happily watch the bands; or in Chris’s case, wait around while I look at all the stalls.

Anyway, the atmosphere was amazing. I heard nothing of tent robberies. I wasn’t approached by drug sellers at all (but then I never went to the dance village). Between the showers the sun shone and I’ve come back with a nice tan. I met up with an old friend and caught up and had a good chat. The music was brilliant. Saw loads of acts in the circus tent that were very impressive. The kids had a fantastic time in the Kidz Field. Ate some delicous mushrooms from the Garlic Kitchen. Pulling the heavy trolley through the mud back to the car yesterday meant I lost 2lbs! I overcame shyness when I was interviewed on Worthy FM about Be In The Place. And overall it was just a very nice chilled out Glastonbury.

Oh one more thing about the mud: Hat’s off to Michael Eavis for sorting out the drainage. Having done the muddy years of ’97 and ’98 I know exactly how bad it can be. Back then you couldn’t even get between the main stage and the other stage because it was so deep. You also couldn’t make it to most food and clothes stalls you wanted to. This year you could get around everywhere as long as you concentrated on not falling over in the slippery bits. No campsites flooded at all – not even the areas that were 2m deep in 2005, and straw and bark chippings were delivered by tractors to bad areas. Well prepared.

One gripe: The worthy focus this year was the campaign against climate change. I’m totally for finding alternative energy; recycling; using energy saving lightbulbs etc; but I’m afraid I have been convinced by a book and a couple of documentaries that all this has nothing to do with climate change at all. Eg. there were vineyards in London when there was a hot period in medieval times. The ice caps melted then too, but the polar bears still survived. Anyway; I would have preferred to see continued support for making poverty history, which was the main campaign in 2005. I suppose they have to go with whatever’s the current thing.

Best act: The Marley brothers.

Worst act: There was a juggler in the circus tent who continuously dropped his balls!

This year’s personal discovery: The Veez.

This year’s fashion trend: Hats! Mostly straw ones with plastic flowers in them.

This year’s weird craze: cross-dressing. Girls with fake or drawn on moustaches, and men in dresses were absolutely everywhere.

Where were they?: Poi. Strangely absent this year.

Complaint: Too many people

Biggest improvement: At last! Big screens at The Other Stage.

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