I can confirm that David Cameron was most definitely at the Wilderness festival, because one of my tribe got a selfie with him. We had very divided opinions about whether he should be seen drinking and smoking and generally loving life, just a year after leaving our sinking ship and whilst I was personally ready to stab him with my butter knife, I was told off for being unreasonable because of course he is allowed to have a life after politics – “he’s only human after all.” I might have had words with him as we were all at the same banquet, but his wife was with him and it wasn’t the time or the place. I’m surprised Theresa May wasn’t there running through fields of wheat – it would have been just her thing. Vince Cable was doing a talk (that we missed) and rumour has it that Zac Goldsmith was dining with David Cameron – so what with the viral selfie of the girl wearing a Corbyn jacket, the festival had a veritable feast going on from all walks of our political landscape.
This was my first Wilderness Festival experience and I loved it. It’s like a teeny weeny Glastonbury, mixed with the Hay Festival. Very easy to get around and lots and lots to do. I got a last minute invite from my oldest friend when her even older friend had to go into hospital for an operation. I felt so sorry for her – not just missing all the fun, but having to get ridiculous updates on what we were all up to from her hospital bed. Lots of their children and friends came too, making it one big happy three day party. I’m definitely going to try and take my children next year, they’d love it.
We stayed in her camper van which was extremely comfortable – my job was to do endless dust busting, which was certainly a lot better than being in charge of changing the wee bucket (no poo’s allowed). The one downside of having a camper van with bells and whistles on was that all the teenagers in the party gathered there for pre’s, dinner and for breakfast. I had to beg my friend not to make me have to cook a full english breakfast for twenty young adults (mostly vegetarian, interestingly), because I don’t even cook much at home, but she was having none of it.
EXHAUSTING (although to be fair one of them took over from me because I was so inept)…
Especially because the food on site is FANTASTIC. I would have happily paid for all their meals rather than have to cook it, but then again we saved a fortune. It’s like being in a huge grown up dressing up box as they most certainly encourage you to dress up. There was a theme every day and whilst you didn’t have to participate, most did. They included twinning day and glitter day – something we managed to merge. The last day was Warriors day…but basically anything goes.
Here were the far cooler, much younger twins:-
I of course had to be caught on camera lugging my box of wine around:-
Because of the size, you can get up close and personal with all the bands if you want. First Aid Kit were playing who I love – they played at Glastonbury – two very talented sisters singing country style. Two Door Cinema Club headlined on the Friday night and Bonobo did on the Saturday evening followed by a splendid light show and a floaty astronaut dancing in the air. Grace Jones was on Sunday but we missed her AND Michael Kiwanuka who I’m really disappointed not to have seen, love him.
One of the best things we saw was Letters Live – my favourite thing at the Hay Festival. We managed to catch a secret performance on the Saturday night – very late. As per usual Jamie Byng introduced the readers and then out came Benedict Cumberbatch, Tom Hollander, Mark Strong, Zawe Ashton and others to read music related letters old and new. Tom Hollander read out a hilarious and graphic love letter by Country Gardens composer Percy Grainger. They also got us to sing Happy Birthday TWICE. Once to Mark Strong whose birthday it was, then Benedict came back out for his second reading and got us all to sing Happy Birthday to his mother “Wanda”, whilst he video’d the whole thing. Hope she enjoyed it!
Our long table banquet was fun on the Saturday night, although we were all in agreement that the food was disappointing for the price (AND THEY WOULDN’T LET US HAVE ENOUGH WHITE WINE)…
We saw some great late night cabaret – especially good was Monsieur Le Bon Bon (Le Bum Bum?). Here he is spotted earlier in the day entertaining the children!
We highlighted lots of earnest things such as “State of the Nation” and “Are we heading towards a second cold war” in the programme, but missed them all for no other reason than we were all too busy eating, drinking, dressing up and people watching. There were lots of rides for the kids and areas designed specifically for hippies where you could do things like dreadlock your own pubic hair or buy piercings and tattoos. You could also go swimming in the lake if you wanted (I didn’t, it looked very cold), I watched from the edge whilst my friend swam amongst lots of naked people. Nudity seemed to be quite a thing. The cricket match played on the Sunday morning was hi-jacked by many a male and female naked body running up and down the pitch. Two poor men ran around naked for a while only to come back to the crowd to find their clothes had been stolen.
Lots of fun had by all….
Spot the streaker:-
and we were all tired and emotional by day three:-