Sunday, 7 September 2014

The End of the Road

I ran away for the long weekend to The End of the Road festival...after a very tumultuous few weeks it was nice to be in a festival environment out in a field where you could see the stars for miles and miles. I like nature, in small doses, and Larmer Tree Gardens where the festival is held is the most beautiful of them all.

The clear air gave me a lot of time to think...I'm starting a new ghost writing set of novels soon and being away from the hustle and bustle let me solidify things in my head. One day I should like to have a little house in the country where I can retreat to and write my new best seller. Maybe with a little log fire and giant trees for the birds to sit in and clear clear skies for miles and miles on either side. A vegetable patch when I learn to grow things without everything dying on me. My cat.

I took too many photos at the festival. Here are my favourites, the rest are on Flickr. Be kind, my poor little camera is sick, it's scratched on the lens. I need a new one money money. Blah blah blah.

I think the thing I love the most about festivals is that everyone around you is a victim of the power of music. It's like this great unconscious force that brings people together and automatically binds us to each other; the power to relate to someone's innermost feelings. The admiration at the nerve it takes to express them. I saw people from all walks of life together singing along down the front before the acts and it was beautiful, this feeling of community that exists in the ether of music shows. I think that I shall be like my father, frequenting the backs of smoky gig-halls for as long as I live, and maybe even after I'm gone. Being a ghost in a venue wouldn't be that bad at all.

Some highlights:

Cheetahs who sound like My Vitriol. The Black Lips who had the most excellent banter of the entire festival "I see a lotta English people wearing sunglasses in the rain" and "Thanks, enjoy the sun". British Sea Power and their dancing bear and fairy-lights and forest of reclaimed branches.  A secret St Vincent Q & A in a tiny stage surrounded by browning trees. The Ghost of a Sabertooth Tiger spooking me back to the 60s. Tuneyards turning the main stage into a carnival. The Felice Brothers barn-dance party with added fiddle, the blaring message in my head that I WILL finish my sci-fi novel one day.

The Flaming Lips.

(not my photo, I was having too much fun, click to go to the site for more)

The Flaming Lips.

How can I describe the whole thing properly? When I came away from the performance I was sobbing. I couldn't speak. I'm usually such a cold-hearted bitch. There was a moment when I was in the midst of the glitter, having been thrown out by the glitter cannons, that I looked up as Wayne Coyne was atop a giant LED screen with visuals of a naked woman in greens and reds and blues, as he stood there in an electric blue spray-painted suit swinging four giant blue lights that I realised that the only place in the world I ever wanted to be at that exact moment was right there. It's hard for anything or anyone to make me loose my mind completely, but I was so in the moment I forgot who I was and where I was and it was glorious. Other highlights, a black-milkesk body suit with tinsel cock and matching jacket and tinsel feather-boa, a giant balloon saying "fuck yeah end of the road", Wayne Coyne like above in a big old zorb-ball rolling over the crowd, a baby and a strobe light from behind like a religious icon, a sing along to Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds with that smile that I've seen here and there of pure happiness on Wayne Coyne's face. So much glitter. More boys should like glitter. All the lights, everywhere, all around. By the end, everyone was crying. Giant blow up aliens, giant blow up sun, giant blow up...whatever. If you'd asked me right after they stopped playing I'd have told you I was in love with Wayne Coyne. I think I still might be, just a little bit.

At one point when I was alone I went exploring in the forest. Larmer Tree Gardens Forest is a sprawling interspersed with benches and greenery. The parts you were supposed to walk round were littered with fairy lights and art installations...

Including games and little recording studios...and a piano that I never got a chance to try and play.

If you explored a little further there were secret boxes and hidden things in the bottom of the trees. I confess I walked the whole thing, even the parts I wasn't supposed to...where the most beautiful plants and ponds were, and this tiny little grotto made of flint with a god inside of it. I like to imagine he controlled the weather so I gave him a little high-five to cheer him up and it was sunny for the rest of the day.

If I ever found myself in the situation I think I would like to get married in Larmer Tree Gardens. I can imagine setting signs up for my wedding guests to the little grotto, making them walk the long way in their outfits through the nature. Kissing my faceless lover in the grotto in front of a few of our friends, sending them all back through the forest littered with fairy-lights like it was for the past four days. Small wedding big party kinda deal.

Now I'm back in the comfort of my beautiful slice of heaven in North London. I've decorated my balcony with lights and fake ivy to remind myself of the beautiful forest...tomorrow it's back to work and off into a detox from the inevitable carb-fest a gluten-free dairy-free girl ends up eating at a festival anywhere other than London or Brighton. You wouldn't believe how much my body is craving fruit. I have four days worth of inspiration to write down, but first, some real sleep...

Love love love, in all it's great forms. x