Thursday, 24 June 2010

Glastonbury is 40 (and so is Big O)

Last year my mate Owen turned 40. At the same time, tickets for the 40th Glastonbury went on sale. Synchronicity as Sting might say. So, in an attempt to drag out his birthday celebrations as long as possible, he (Owen, not Sting) bravely toiled in front of a hot computer and successfully secured three tickets to the "largest greenfield music and performing arts festival in the world".

So, on Wednesday evening, I threw my rucksack, tent, sleeping bag and wet wipes into the car and headed over the Pennines to Timperley - home of Frank Sidebottom (R.I.P.), various Stone Roses, and Owen (hereafter referred to as Big O). More stuff chucked into the car and a final stop in Holmes Chapel to pick up the third member of our team, Martin (Higginson - hereafter referred to as Higgo).

We hit the M6 and headed south, iPod on-the-go playlist loaded with singalong tunes and the three of us loaded with coffee and anticipation. Apart from a brief double espresso stop we wasted little time and arrived at the festival gates in the small hours of Thursday morning, encountering very little traffic (presumably few other people are daft enough to be turning up at this time).

First impressions were good - the volunteer car park marshals seemed as excited to be there as we were and directed us towards the camping areas. Big O had done his usual level of in-depth research and had half an idea of where we wanted to camp (somewhere quiet, far away from dance tents, toilets and young people) and after a half hour hike we found a spot near the perimeter fence which was flat, spacious and devoid of glowstick-waving youngsters. Tents were erected and in Big O's case, staircases, bathrooms and kitchens installed (we never got a full tour of his tent but I heard that on the second floor he had a games room with pool tables and a bar).

As the sun rose over the John Peel Tent, we went to sleep...

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