Hey guys! Over the weekend I went to my first ever festival (and my second). Hit that “Read More” tag to see how it all went in SUPER detail!
Despite being excited to see people such as Catfish and The Bottlemen and Justin Bieber, the actual festival experience had me freaked. I’ve been to many concerts before and have absolutely loved (most of) them, but from what I’ve seen festivals are completely different. Building up to the days before the festival I had no idea what to even expect: would people be stood the entire time? What do people wear? What bag do I bring? Do I bring a jacket? So many questions (most probably just me over thinking it all).
On the 1st July I went to a festival called Community where artists such as The Wombats and Catfish and The Bottlemen were headlining. After checking the weather beforehand I decided it’d be around 23 degrees with sunny intervals so thought it’d definitely be shorts weather… of course I was wrong. The sunny intervals part was a lie and instead was constantly cloudy making it so cold! Most people however were smart enough to bring a jacket, but obviously not me. Me in my shorts and bodysuit carried on freezing my bum off the entire night. Even though I was wearing shorts and felt completely undressed the entire time, turns out most people wear close to nothing to festivals. A lot of the people were aged 16-23 at this festival and almost all the under 20s had an extreme lack of clothing. The shorts they were wearing could pretty much be classed as underwear. I don’t even know how they called that tiny bit of fabric covering their boobs “a top”.
The festival layout was quite nice, they had a couple of stages in a large field where they had a standing area for each one and then you could just sit in the surrounding grass. My friend and I both decided to stay sitting on the grass for the majority until The Wombats came on. Sitting on the grass however was super nice and chill and I’d happily do it again. It’s a shame though because the food and drink prices were so extortionate that we didn’t bother getting anything to eat/drink. When we went into the standing pit I found it actually awful. People were throwing bottles of beer (or whatever they even put in there) making everyone soaked and gross. I’m pretty sure some girl was sick on the back of my leg as well. For those of you that don’t know, I’m quite small at around 5’2 which made it difficult for me in many ways. For one thing, I literally couldn’t see anything (not even the massive screen) because so many tall people were infront. Also, because I’m small it almost made me a “target” for people. If anyone wanted to move or get past they would literally shove me out of the way and not even apologise pretty much just because they could. For me it was an awful experience and just lead to me feeling panicked. The crowd was way too rowdy for my liking.
Keep in mind however I had a festival the following day. I got home at around midnight on the 1st and was extremely cold and tired. I was so worried that the festival I had on the day after would be the exact same. If that was the case then I knew I really wouldn’t enjoy myself.
Next day came and I was extremely excited to see one of my absolute favourites Justin Bieber! This festival was called Barclaycard’s British Summer Time. The prices for this was extremely pricey in comparison to Community. BST cost around £80 for an average ticket (or we bought a £130 ticket to get in the pit next to the stage) whereas Community was only £35 which might explain why so many young people went. In the morning I ended up having an extreme panic as I lost the tickets. A fellow Habboxer named Cerys came with me and I had her ticket. I was absolutely freaked knowing I’d lost over £260 worth of tickets. After a good 50 minutes of looking I found them under my desk (luckily) and set off to meet Cerys.
After my previous experience I warned her that drinks were extremely pricey and we should pre-drink at a Wetherspoons. Of course drinks were still extremely pricey (London prices and all) but still better than festival prices. When we arrived at the festival we bought a bottle of wine because you can’t bring your own food/drink in and it cost us £23 (insane!). We then went and sat into our Premium section by the stage and chilled there for a bit. It was extremely hot though with sun right on us and again I wasn’t dressed for the weather. Luckily I had a spare top in my bag so I could get changed into something a bit thinner but it was still long sleeved. Neither of us were smart enough to bother wearing suncream either so both ended up getting really sunburnt after being in the sun from 12:00 onwards.
As the day went on we ended up having quite a lot to drink and it all added up. We bought 4 bottles of wine between us. With each bottle being so pricey and our drinks in wetherspoons, in total we spent almost £120 on just drinks yesterday. Cerys got so drunk however and then went off to buy us food. After about 10 minutes a couple behind me asked whether she was okay hahaha! When Cerys came back we ended up chatting to the people behind us and had some lovely chats. They were a really cute lesbian couple who tried to convince me and Cerys to become lesbian ourselves (although they were over double our age).
The atmosphere was so different at this festival though, maybe because we were in the expensive bit so the 16 year-olds couldn’t afford to come in? It was so much more relaxed and so much more family friendly (which I definitely preferred). We stayed in our space and just danced along to all the artists and by Justin Bieber we were pretty much sober again. It got super packed though when Justin came on compared to all the other artists. However, still a lot better than at Community. Cerys even managed to have me on her shoulders for a solid 2 minutes which was so insane seeing it so clearly and not having heads in the way! Honestly one of my all-time favourite days ever spent with one of my favourite people, seeing one of my favourite people, whilst meeting some of the most lovely people.
The way back however wasn’t quite as fun. After it finished we had to get the tube back to where we were staying. We were both super hungry and dehydrated after being in the sun for so long and drinking so much alcohol (not so much water/soft drinks). We got the tube back to another area in London where we stayed in a Travelodge. Luckily there was a nearby Tesco so we bought a couple of bottles of lemonade and some cake, then headed back to our hotel room. The nicest surprise was that I ended up buying Wi-Fi for our room and ended up forgetting!
We were both super tired and super thirsty, so pretty much went asleep when we got in at around 12. My bed however was the most uncomfortable bed I’ve ever slept in. I could genuinely feel every single spring from the mattress going into my back. It was also super cold in our room, but Travelodge could only afford to give us sheets instead of duvets. I tried showing Cerys how hard my mattress was by hitting it. Cerys responded my telling me off for hitting the wall which I soon explained was actually my mattress. I then complained about how uncomfortable the beds were and Travelodge replied telling me how the beds were picked after extensive research… yeah ok.
I suppose festivals are super common for people to go to (especially for people around my age) but if you’re like me and haven’t been to one/don’t know what to expect then here’s a summary of points:
- Check the weather before! Also bring a jacket because it’ll only get colder through the day, just tie it around your waist
- Only bring a small bag! A small rucksack is probably best, I brought a sidebag to Community and was so hard to do anything (or if possible a fanny bag is even better even though theyre ugly A LOT of people have them)
- If you’re going to drink then make you keep eating/drink other stuff as well!
- Make sure you wear sun cream (even as a precaution!)
- Talk to new people! Make the most of where you are
- Go to the toilet before you go because festival toilets are minging
- Premier Inn is better than Travelodge
- Make sure you have enough money and a safe way to get home!
- Try and know as many words to songs as possible
- And most importantly, enjoy yourself!
Sorry for the super long and personal post but I hope its given you some insight to festivals (and my weekend) in case any of you were interested! Hope it’s not too boring x