Exeposé Lifestyle Issue 655, Page 18 (31 May 2016) and Exeposé Lifestyle online (6 June 2016)
You’ve paid the extortionate ticket price, bought a rubbish tent from Argos and discovered your perfect knee-high-socks-and-wellies selfie angle. The bag’s packed, the sunnies are on and the pre-fest Insta’s looking on point. You’re ready for your first ever weekender – or are you?
I mean, 17-year-old me thought so when the shuttle bus rocked up at Leeds Fest 2K12. Three days later that bruised, flu-ridden shell of a woman vowed never to do “the festival thing” ever again. But age brings wisdom – and while at 21, I may not have learned how to French-plait my hair or open a shop-bought sandwich, this OAP’s got the fest thing sussed. Want to know how to survive a muddy weekender in the midlands? Here’s some absolute top-priority advice from a gal who’s been there and done it. Horrifically badly…
Always have a hill buddy
So after a wet, miserable Thursday night in Orange Camp, my friends wanted to go to the pre-fest party to see some shit band I’d never heard of. “Rudimental” or something. Anyway, soon I’d had enough drum and bass for one night.
Alone, I began the uphill trek to Orange Camp – which in one night had somehow become a mudslide. Near the summit, I paused to catch my breath. Straightened up. Began teetering backwards. Didn’t have anyone to grab. The next thing anyone knew, Han was rising from the mud at the hill’s base like some kind of tipsy swamp monster. No amount of baby wipes would fix this.
Don’t take that cute bracelet your boyfriend bought you in Spain
It’s a no-brainer, right? Tell that to the wasted teenager dancing to ‘Mr Brightside’ in the silent disco while bawling her eyes out because she lost her ‘Te Amo’ bracelet. Apparently it was one of the most simultaneously hilarious yet heartbreaking things my friend had ever witnessed.
Don’t take the boyfriend either
…no, not for that reason. It’s just, this weekend will probably be the most disgusting you’ve felt in your entire life. Your baby wipes have enough responsibility on their shoulders without adding dubious bodily fluids to the mix. Of course, everyone’s relationship is unique – and if you can handle seeing your partner in varying degrees of grossness, go ahead. Just maybe keep your hands off each other for the weekend.
Pack carbs. Lots of carbs!
And you thought Pret was overpriced. Late night munchies aren’t fun when we’re talking £7 for a box of noodles. Save yourself the hassle and just cram some nondescript carbs in your face once you’ve crawled into the sleeping bag. I went for crackers.
Get on someone’s shoulders during your favourite song
… because why would anyone put themselves through all of this? For those precious moments screaming ‘The Pretender’ from the shoulders of a randomer, of course. Top tip: if you want to prevent them putting you down again, just keep that grip up. It’s probably best to do thigh exercises in preparation.
Sack it off and get cheap flights to Barcelona instead
Did I say that one out loud?