Glastonbury 2011: hashtags, ham and hangovers

This time a week ago I was being perpetually sucked off at the ankles by a pounding mudfest the size of Bath.

I spent today hunched over my desk dreading an impending Weight Watchers weigh-in and doing my best impression of  a civilised office worker.

The mackems take on Glasto

For those of you who don’t know by now, I’m experiencing The Glasto Comedown. Fortunately, I know I’m not the only one; my Facebook feed is a Glasto graveyard of messy photos,  sad smileys and sprawling statuses filled with in-jokes – mostly written by the posse of wonderful mackems with whom I camped, drank, raved, walked, moaned, and laughed until my spleen came out through my navel.

I know I’m not alone when I say that our week was nothing short of spectacular.

From the honeymooning couple we stumbled across and with whom we got absolutely muntered and peaked far too soon on Thursday night/Friday morning, to climbing on to a sturdy pair of shoulders just as the Chemical Brothers‘ clown visual looked like it was about to eat me whole.

From wandering the post-apocalytpic, truly, amazingly, twisted Shangri La and Block 9 stumbling across transexuals splayed on nightclub counters spraying dubious-looking bulges with whipped cream, to raving next to haggard 40 year-old pillheads in a sauna-esque disco.

Even to dealing with the paralysingly awkward moment when the illiterate scouser we nicknamed Pervy Pete – camped alone in a 1 man tent beside our gazebo – came uninvited, mid babywipe bath, to tell us (in barely recognisable slurs and 4-day-old underpants) of his hopes of a promotion from festival litter picker to toilet cleaner, or better still, a 3-year apprenticeship in wizardry from his mate in the healing fields.

But like any good rollercoaster, after the mind-blowing highs, come the inevitable lows.

Going back to work – even after a 17 hour sleep, a dominos, and a Krispy Kreme – was mine. It seems that partying so hard in an environment so removed fromthe 9-5 brings with it a delightful sense that real life doesn’t exist anymore. For those few days you spend waking up under the canvas wearing all of your clothes and a glowstick necklace, at least.

So while in the short term, I’m fairly sure I can cope with being (or at least pretending to be) a civilised member of society, Glastonbury has re-awakened the pierced up, liberated, laughs-like-a-hyena part of me I knew so well as a carefree, debt-free, worry-free teenager.

Now I’m not saying I’m about to buy a tipi and become some kind of nomadic, dreadlocked, stoner  – let’s face it,  no one likes crusties. But I’d like to think it might encourage me at the very least to laugh more (big, aching, belly laughs), take a few more chances and stay up until the early hours with good friends and loved ones more often. And that can only be a good thing.

It’s safe to say that though the weather was a world away from my first Glastonbury during the 2010 heatwave, there wasn’t a moment I would take back.

Well, maybe the one at 5am when I realised my ability to squat was lost somewhere with the lasers in the hardcore rave we’d just left, and that I was ever so slightly having a wee on my leggings.

I’d love to know your favourite memories of Glastonbury – 2011 or otherwise – so please share them in the comments!


  1. Barry

    Absolutely tremendous that Laura! I couldn’t have summed it up better myself. The Glasto come down has been hard this year but I suppose that goes to show how much of an amazing time we all had! You’ve made one Mackem very happy :o)

  2. sarah arnott

    whiz whiz whiz come on laura walk up that bank u can do it ya want more more lol. xxxxx

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