I’ve wanted to write about my love of festivals for a long time, but have never been able to find the *right* words to describe it. I wanted to write something from the heart, but everything kept ending up as a twee “REASONS I LOVE FESTIVALS” listicle somehow. So, I’m just going to give it a go and see what happens.
I love festivals. I love them SO much. As soon as the weather started getting sunny last week, my brain was instantly in a count-down to our first festival of the summer (Slam Dunk North, for anyone wondering). This year, we only have 2 festivals penciled in our diaries – Slam Dunk and Leeds Fest – and I’m already counting down the days. Fingers crossed we have weather as gorgeous as 2017!
When I try pinpoint what it is about festivals that has my heart skipping a beat, it’s difficult. And the reason it’s difficult is because there aren’t necessarily specific reasons, it’s more just a general feeling.
When I go to a festival, especially one that I attend every year (or, most years), I feel like I’m coming home as soon as I step onto the site. Familiar faces, the feel of community, everyone being there for the same reason. It’s that instant feeling of leaving my “real life” behind, where every possible weight is lifted from my shoulders and the only thing I care about is what band I’m going to see next and when I’m next going to the bar for a few days that keeps me coming back.
For one weekend, or even one day for Slam Dunk, anything else I have going on in life disappears and all I have to do is spend time with friends, sing along to some of my favourite bands, discover new bands, drink cider and eat.
If you know me, or have read any of my festival content before, you’ll know I’m not a ~traditional~ festival goer, in that I don’t camp when I’m there. There are a few reasons for this, the first being that I hate camping but the main being that I can’t realistically camp because of my bad back – it’s either too painful or too expensive because of all the extra things I need to be comfortable. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’ve done it in the past and I know how fun it can be, but it’s definitely not for me anymore.
But, because of this, I actually enjoy festivals even more. The weekend ones we attend (usually Download and Leeds Fest) are treated more like holidays, or mini staycations. We treat ourselves to a nice hotel and really make the most of the weekend, meaning I enjoy it even more. You can’t beat a hot bath after spending the day on your feet!
There’s a sense of freedom at festivals. They’re the one place I go every year where I feel excited about putting together outfits, makeup looks and hair. This comes with the whole “I don’t camp” thing, I’m sure – I have no idea how anyone who’s camping can be bothered doing anything than some dry shampoo and a bit of BB cream. I’m a big believer in practical festival fashion, but it’s so fun to be able to push boundaries with my wardrobe, try new things and always feel at home with it.
If you’ve never been to a festival, I would definitely say do it at least once. They’re unlike anywhere else. If it rains, get yourself a drink, a poncho, some wellies and have a dance. If it’s sunny, slap on some SPF, get yourself a drink and have a dance. Whatever you do, just get yourself a drink, have a dance and I can promise you you’ll have the absolute time of your life.
Now… how many days until Slam Dunk?