This time last year I tentatively told readers of my Bath Chronicle column/blog about the nerves I felt as I was about to break my Glastonbury Festival ‘virginity’.
Despite being a big music fan all my life, the ‘tempting’ lure of the big-festivals-in-a-field had always passed me by until last year at the tender age of 45, I made my first appearance in that famous Somerset field in Pilton.
The lure of The Boss (that’s Bruce Springsteen for the uninitiated) was what finally convinced me to get off the sofa and get on the road but as I confided to you all 12 months ago, it was not without major trepidation.
For a start when you get to your mid 40s – especially if like me you’ve managed to avoid camping at all costs – you do realise how much you come to rely on the comforts of life. A night away should involve a comfortable hotel bed – not a piece of ground recently vacated by cows.
And then of course there was the greatest fear for me – The Legend Of The Glastonbury Toilets. I know it may not sound very manly of me but I do think that the private, indoor flushing toilet is one of the greatest inventions of all time (up there with the wheel and DVD boxsets) and frankly sharing this most basic of amenities with thousands of other people from all over the globe appealed not a jot.
My son, who will be accompanying me again this year, once cuttingly said of me “when God was inventing man, I don’t think you were quite what he had in mind” and I realised that this was never more true than when it comes to planning a camping trip in a field where the toilet paper wasn’t on tap and didn’t smell of peach.
But as those of you will know who read my subsequent adjective-laden report after my first visit to Glastonbury, I had an absolute ball. The music was truly amazing but I also came away with the impression that you could have the most wonderful experience, even if you never heard a note.
It is just such an unusual, diverse and appealing community experience where the music is the glue that holds everything together but the fellowship, camaraderie, fun and genuine sense of peace and contentment is just as important.So, having not only survived but I think prospered as a result of my first Glastonbury, I’m off there again this year.
Indeed by the time some of you read this I may already be settled into my stunning one-man tent looking forward to another weekend of music, mayhem and (hopefully) mud-free fields.So can I just say to all the other nervous ‘Glastonbury virgins’ out there about to embark on their first foray into festival fun to just relax and get set for a truly amazing time.
Oh and don’t forget the loo paper (or the sun cream!)