The Cornbury Music Festival - Part 2

7 years ago

The first day of the Cornbury Music Festival dawned..... at 5.45am to be precise. After spending half the night awake, shivering from the cold, I was awoken by a fierce sun that bathed the inside of the tent with light. I groaned and buried my head in my sleeping bag in a desperate attempt to try and get some more sleep.

Within ten minutes it became clear that my attempts were futile; not only was the tent illuminated, but the sun's warmth had started to permeate the enclosed sleeping area. With a lack of ventilation, it was a heavy, plastic laden, humid type of heat that makes your scalp sweat and your body feel sticky. Totally gross.

I struggled out of my sleeping bag; my joints aching after sleeping on a hard camping mat, and my head aching from a lack of sleep. Bloody hell, camping isn't a holiday, it's a bloody endurance test.

Pic.No.1. The superheated interior of the tent

"Where is the bathroom?" I asked sleepily.

"Outside and over there," came the reply, "just follow the fence and you'll get there."

I quickly changed out of my pyjamas, and made my way to the bathroom. Boy, was I in for a shock. There was no bathroom. Instead there was a line of green portable toilets, each one with a huge queue. Sacre bleu! It was like being in Guantanamo Bay, except less civilised and without the stylish orange jumpsuits.


Pic.No.2. Bathroom? What bathroom? This was as good as the hygiene provision got

After fifteen minutes waiting in line, my turn for the porta-loo experience finally came. I can honestly say that I was traumatised; a bit like Lindsay Lohan when she got sentenced to three months earlier this week. Forget marble sinks and fresh, white fluffy towels; this cubicle didn't even have toilet tissue or a sink (it had antiseptic handwash instead). And to add to the vomit-inducing surroundings, the sickly smell of warm human plop hung in the air. 

'Jeez, this can't be legal,' I thought to myself as I desperately rushed to get out of there, touching as little of anything as I could. Ugh. I felt unclean.

Pic.No.3. Trying to find my way back to the tent when they all look the same

Once back at the tent (and finding it in the sea of canvas domes was tricky enough), I sat gulping in lungfuls of fresh air in order to try and get the smell of baking plop out of my nostrils. Eventually, I was calm once more, and ready to tackle the showers.

"So, where are the showers?" I asked Steve when I got back.

"Don't even bother, the queue is an hour and a half," came the reply.

"Ermmm, if I can't have a shower, what am I supposed to do?" I demanded, feeling a bit panicky.

"Wash with this."

I was unceremoniously handed a small bowl full of water with a sponge in it.

So yeh, I had to resort to this: Squatting in a baking hot tent, trying to wash with a thimbleful of water and a dirty sponge. Let's put it in perspective, if I made Izzy wash like that at home, there would be a clear case for calling in the Child Protection unit.

Finally, by 9am I was fully washed and dressed, and the smell of cooking bacon was drifting from the stove. I sat in my camping chair and a mug of hot tea was thrust into my hands.

'Ummm yes, I think I am cut out for this camping milarky,' I thought to myself as I took the first bite of my bacon sandwich. I was like a Sherpa living off the land and always on full alert in case of danger. 

Bring on the music festival...... !

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