Sunday, July 05, 2015

Review: Glastonbury Festival 2015, Part 2

It was Friday morning at Glastonbury. I had been on Worthy Farm for five days now and finally I had to start work. Also today the music would begin so I knew it was going to be a long exciting day. The queue was too long to get breakfast so I just had a couple of cups of coffee to wake me up. Rain had been forecast so I packed my raincoat in my little back pack. I also pulled on my bright yellow veterans t-shirt to impress the other team members. I didn't wear it for long though, I'll tell you why in a minute. Finally at 5.30 I marched off down Muddy Lane to get to Arcadia. It was quite a long walk and I was knackered by the time I got there. Arcadia is this huge metal structure that looks like a great 3 legged spider. At night it breathes fire which can be seen all over the site and they have lots of performances on it. This morning though it was deserted except the field was covered in rubbish that we had to clear up. I was worried about being late but when I arrived there was just one couple there.They were called Rob and Alison from Chatham in Kent who were there with their daughter and her friend. I had a spare litter-picking stick which I gave to Alison. All of our team were great but it was them who I talked to most over the next four shifts. Gradually all our team arrived and our leader Jeremy arrived pushing the wheelbarrow laden with boxes of rubbish bags. Over the next four days I realised that our team was the best because we had the best leader. Jeremy knew how to motivate people without getting stressed about it. There were 48 of us I think and what I liked about our team was it covered all age groups from teenagers upwards. The previous year I was in a small team where I was the oldest by about 3 decades so I didn't feel out of place this year.

                                                                        After roll call we all helped ourselves to plastic bags from the wheelbarrow. Black bags for stuff that can't be recycled, blue bags for cans and plastic bottles etc, and white recyclable bags for organic waste like cardboard cups and plates and wooden knives and forks and food etc. 47% of all the waste at Glasto is recycled which is quite an achievement. Then we all formed a line in the corner by the ice-cream van and moved across the field picking up the rubbish. In previous years I had just used my gloves to pick stuff up with but this year I had a litter-picking grabber and I got on really well with it and my back didn't ache like in other years. In areas like Arcadia one of the things you get a lot of is nitrous-oxide containers and balloons. This seems to be the craze these days, squirting the gas into a balloon and inhaling it. It all seems a bit silly to me. Anyway, the gas cylinders are really valuable aluminium material so they went in the blue bag. The time went really quickly and by 9.00 we had Arcadia looking spick and span.
 The sun came out and it started to get really hot and I discovered the problem with my bright yellow veterans t-shirt. It attracted lots of tiny little black flies. I think they were trying to pollinate me. Luckily I had another t-shirt on underneath so I reversed them which solved the problem. After Arcadia we had a welcome break and then carried on towards The Glade. Some of the worse mess was around the litter bins where they had overflowed. There are 2,500 bins at Glasto but even that doesn't seem to be enough. Anyway, our great team soon cleared that mess up. The Glade is the oldest dance area at Glastonbury. I can remember it being there in the 1990's. It is nice and shady in there amongst the trees, hence, chillin' out in the Glade. Today it was relatively easy in that area and we were more or less done by 10.30 but that was too early to go home and Jeremy got instructions that we were to help out the Park team who were struggling. It was quite a gruelling walk up the hill but we didn't mind and we worked our way right up to the Glastonbury sign and were rewarded with the magnificent view. Finally Jeremy got the word from HQ that the work was all done for the day. Jeremy signed us out and gave us our meal tickets. Our first shift was over.

                                                                         When I got back to Tom's field I found  the queue for lunch was too long, it was going out the door. There were 1,800 hungry litter-pickers in our field. I decided not to bother, I had places to go and people to see so after a quick wash at the tap I headed back down the lane and bought a delicious vegetarian Cornish pasty. I didn't eat meat once at Glasto, the vegetarian food was that nice. Then I wandered on and I wanted to hear some music. It was a music festival after all. I went to the Leftfield stage because I had heard that there was a 'Pussy Riot' going on which sounded very exciting but when I got there all I found was some Russian women talking about what a bastard Vladimir Putin is (Joke!)  I got bored after about 20 minutes, I'm sure Vladimir isn't any worse than David Cameron. They are all as bad as each other in my opinion. I carried on to the Theatre field. I love the theatre bar where I stopped for a drink because you only have to sit outside it for a few minutes and something amazing will happen. Sure enough two men dressed as Arctic explorers came by and I had my picture taken with them. Then I saw this man who I had seen last year. He was dressed like a character from Dickens and plays an upright piano but it moves along by him cycling a device underneath. This year he had a girl who was about 8 years old standing in the piano dressed as a cat and singing a song called 'It Ain't Wot You Want, It's Wot You Get'. That is why you don't need drugs at Glasto, reality is amazing enough.

                                                                        I had arranged to meet Margaret and Wayne at the Acoustic Stage bar at 2.00 and as well as them it was great to see my niece Lee and her friends and Neil and his mate Dominic from Westbury. On the stage I saw a nice band called 'Red Sky July' who are a 3 piece band formed of ex members of Texas and Alisha's Attic. I thought they were really good playing Country/Americana type music. After that we watched 'Stornoway' who were great. As you know Stornoway is in Scotland but when the band were formed they had never been to Stornoway, they come from Oxford but they had heard Stornoway on the Shipping Forecast and liked the name.
 I'll tell you the real reason I spent so much time at the Acoustic Stage on Friday afternoon. It was because the predicted rain had started and I had stupidly left my raincoat in my tent so I was trapped in the Acoustic Stage. I didn't mind though because the music was great. I particularly enjoyed the set by 'Duke Special'. I have had the pleasure of meeting him on a couple of occasions and some of my friends are big fan's of his and I have promised them I'll write an individual review of his show. I'll do that after I have completed this mammoth review. After Duke I saw a bit of 'J.D.McPherson' which was really good but the rain was easing off and I was determined to get some dinner after missing breakfast and lunch. As I marched back up the lane I could hear 'Motorhead' singing The Ace Of Spades on the Pyramid Stage.

                                                                          After dinner I had a nap in my tent and woke up at 9.00 in time to see a magnificent show by 'Christy Moore' who headlined the Acoustic Stage. It was so great I wrote a whole review of his show and since I published it a few days ago Christy read it himself and sent me a nice message. If you scroll down you can read my Christy review if you want.I finally got in my tent at 12.30. It had been a fabulous day but Glastonbury 2015 was to get even better the following day........................


To be continued soon...............................
                                                                                         

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