Tuesday 25 June 2013

I'm so surprised you want to dance with me now.

I’m going to Glastonbury tomorrow! It’s my seventh one so I thought I would share with you some of my top tips for a pleasant festival experience, especially if you’re Glasto-bound too.

Comfortable Sleeping
Tents are cold and the ground is hard, and those sleeping mat thingies do bloomin’ nothing. Airbeds are great, but heavy, so the next best thing is... a lilo! They add padding between you and the ground and as they’re so cheap, you can just deflate them and throw them away before you leave the festival. You can get them from Asda, or eBay!

Quiet Sleeping
People in campsites like to talk. And play music. And get out their acoustic guitars and sing Wonderwall. All of these people deserve to be shot, obviously, but a slightly less illegal alternative is to drown them the heck out. As a light sleeper, I’m a big earplugs advocate anyway – but they are never quite good enough to drown out the idiots two tents over who just won’t shut up. Last time, I discovered a method that worked perfectly – insert earplugs, then put over-ear headphones over the top and play soothing music (I recommend The National because they’re wonderful). It completely blocks out external sound, so you can drift off to sleep to your favourite song. So good! Last time I used my old iPod, but it’s on its last legs and I don’t think the battery will hold out – so this time I have gone retro and bought a discman from Argos for just a tenner. The best thing is, the battery won’t die because I can just replace it. So clever!

Keeping Warm
Let’s face it, we know that a British summer isn’t actually summer any more. It’s cold, man! Especially at night. My top tip is layers, not just on top but everywhere. You’d be amazed what popping a pair of leggings over your tights does. So warm!

Minimising Muddiness
If it’s muddy, you’ll never escape it entirely, sorry. But you can minimise its effect by dressing correctly. Short skirts, dresses or shorts are your best bet, and tights. Tights dry fast, and as they don’t weigh much it’s easy to cram loads of spare pairs into your rucksack. If they get muddy, just swap ‘em over.

Optimum Dryness
Well, that sounds like an advert for some kind of feminine hygiene product, doesn’t it? But I’m talking about rain here, people. And the most important thing to remember is that DENIM IS NOT YOUR FRIEND. Look, I’ll allow mid-thigh denim. Shorts, miniskirts, pinafores – you can stay. But jeans? GTFO. If you’ve ever experienced the exquisite hell that is trying to put on a pair of wet jeans, you’ll understand. There’s nowhere to hang clothes to dry at festivals, unless it’s sunny. If your denim clad legs get wet, you’re going to be an uncomfortable little sausage for the rest of the weekend.

Easy Access
The toilets at Glastonbury are a lot better than they used to be, but believe me, you are still going to want to get in and out as quickly as possible. That’s why skirts are the best option – tights down, tights up. Done! As practical as playsuits, dungarees and jumpsuits appear, they’re really not. Especially if it’s late, and you’ve layered your playsuit over a pair of tights, with a jumper and a kagoul on top of that – it’s a freaking nightmare! Plus, all you need is to get a portaloo with a dodgy door, and the whole queue will see you pretty much naked trying to have a wee. Plus, imagine if you lost your grip on your playsuit and it falls to the floor? You’d better HOPE that’s just mud.

Oh, and on the toilets subject – get your wristband put on your, er, non-wiping hand. You’ll feel a lot better about wearing it for four days, trust me.

Stay Sun-Aware
You can still burn, even if it’s cloudy. Wear sun cream, wear a hat, keep hydrated. As someone who has had sunstroke at Glastonbury before, I can tell you that it’s not bloody pleasant. You do not want to walk through a festival site feeling like you’re going to be sick, believe me. Ugh. The total worst.

Pack for every eventuality
What’s that? They’ve predicted sun for every day at the festival? Yeah, you’d best pack your wellies. TRUST ME. I’ve been in this situation before, and the result was the Great Wellington Boot Drought of 2005. My friend sold his for £100! I had to tramp about in a pair 2 sizes too big for me! And I was one of the lucky ones! Look, if you don’t bring your wellies, then it will rain, and IT WILL BE YOUR FAULT.

Have fun! You’re going to feel like death at the end of it, but it’ll be amazing. Trust me.



  1. Haha the non-wiping hand tip is my favourite one!

    I always warn people away from playsuits at festivals. Nothing worse than fighting through five layers just to have a wee.

  2. It's not fair you are making me soooo jealous I'm not going to a festival this year :-(
    I hope you have a fab time!xxx

  3. Great tips! I haven't been to a festival since my teens...7 Glastoburys is impressive! x

  4. Have fun. As you know, I've never done a festival, and tbf reading this, I think I'm probs a bit too prissy for it. I just don't enjoy being cold, and wet and uncomfortable and not being able to sleep. I'd be pissed if I brought my friends brought me along, put it that way!

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  6. Oops - sorry! Ah... Glastonbury, how I miss you! We're thinking about going to Latitude with some other families next year. I'm interested to see how a festival with a bit less music is - and one that apparently has far cleaner showers and stuff. I am excited!

  7. Have fun! Might see you there! :-)

    This'll be my 8th Glastonbury (or Pilton, everyone in Somerset calls it Pilton). My first shift is Thursday daytime and then I'm working Friday and Saturday daytime. Hoping to go in each night and during the day Sunday! Looking forward to Nick Cave and Mumford and Sons on Sunday night :-)

    I did a Glastonbury blog post last weekend - an alternative checklist - essential items for the Pilton worker! :-) x

  8. Haha! This post made me snort with laughter on a bus. I don't want to imagine you figuring out the non-wiping hand trick for the first time...

    Have a marvellous time, Sarah x


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