We’re off on our annual pilgrimage to the musical shrine that is Glastonbury this weekend. However, not as brave as some, we’re leaving the Little S.H.I.T.s at home with the grandparents.
It’s a sacred zone for us, not to be tarnished with children demanding wee wees and iPaddy in the middle of a muddy field, just as your favourite band of all time are about to come on stage.
So we are about to embark on my favourite weekend of the year when I can truly pretend I’m 24 again and nobody knows that I’m a mother of three with piles of washing, piles of admin that never gets done, piles of plastic tat all over my house, and well just piles, quite frankly.
And in my excited pre-festival state, I thought I’d put together my top 7 tips for the glorious middle-aged festival goer:
Just don’t try to see it all. You’ll spend your time checking the programme like a nervy bird spotter, desperate not to miss the rarest Bush Warbler (not really sure what that is to be honest, but it sounds good). There’s no chance you can see it all. So relax. A contestant on Supermarket Sweep you are not, running around with Dale, trying to shove as much in your trolley as possible.
Take in the random tent you happen to stumble across. You never know, you might find it’s Steve Davis inside (yup, the ginge snooker player one) spinning the decks – this is a true story.
Get as many selfies as poss
Have no shame when it comes to a sleb selfie. The uncoolness of it seems to be forgiven in ‘festival land’. I’ve managed to blissfully stalk many a famous face from Z-lister reality stars to the slightly more A-lister, through the mud of Glasto. For some reason accosting them doesn’t seem so desperate in this peace loving world. Or maybe it is, but I’m just oblivious after inhaling 25 vodka jellies.
Forget it. Bring face wipes and moisturiser if you can be arsed, then slap on a swipe of lippy to take the attention away from those tired eyes (which will be very, very tired) as suggested by top makeup artist Florrie white in our recent interview. And you’re good to go.
OK, now this is a biggy because there are no two ways about it – the loos are heinously, hideously disgusting. Beyond revolting. Think of a swamp of swimming poo.
Amazing that in normal circumstances you will hover in disgust above a loo seat in a semi-cleanish service station, but after half a day of your average festival sanitary conditions, those service station loos seem clean enough to eat your dinner off.
But it’s a fact, so you’re just going to have to man or woman up to it, as there’s no way round it apart from wearing a giant nappy.
Wear what you like because nobody really cares, unless you’re Kate Moss of course and you can carry off festival cool with aplomb.
But the most vital item is the wellington boot. You may have seen pics of the likes of Alexa & co. in their Hunters and thought it was just part of their festival boho chic, but no, they’re an absolute necessity. The tiniest drop of rain and the place is a scene from a tough mudder obstacle course. You’ll be slipping and sliding all over the place and there’s no point even trying to look cool.
The people are the thing, besides the music of course, that I love the most. From the youngies to the oldies with the middlies in between, everybody is nice to each other. It sounds a cliche but there really is so much love and peace around. Strangers talk to one another. I know, utterly ridiculous in this anonymous world we live in, but it’s so refreshing. The common love is the music and it brings people of all shapes and sizes together.
You’re 24 again
And lastly, remember it’s the one time of the year when you can genuinely be 24 again (even if you look 104 after the first night). Nobody knows you’re a mother, father, teacher, accountant, butcher, baker or candlestick maker, and nobody gives a monkeys.
You have no responsibilities, nobody calling your name every five seconds, nobody to get to school in ten seconds flat, nobody screaming at you to retrieve their fidget spinner out of a bush of stinging nettles.
It’s just you and Radiohead and a pint of gin and tonic.
Enjoy every minute.