Glasto’s Final Roar: Hippie Vibes, Music Legends, and Life-Defining Moments Under the Stars!
- Published on Sunday, 30 July 2023 11:10
- Last Updated on 23 July 2023
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Glasto‘s Final Roar: Hippie Vibes, Music Legends, and Life-Defining Moments Under the Stars! Day 4 – Woken up by a bass drum practising before the perf, ‘d-df … d-df… d-df…’ sounding like a heartbeat. Omg, a call to all the sleepy heads that the dance floor awaits for one final push. It reminded me of elephants communicating by sending deep sounds reverberating across the earth of the savannah.
Park stage began with a mellow Celtic band, something melodic to bring us back slowly.
The last day, but we try not to think about that and the 5am coach tomorrow morning. 5am…? No but. WTF. How does that work. I checked with ground staff about flexibility, there is none. So… get up 3:30? Or better still, we dance it out. That means collapsing the tent and packing this evening. It’s all too much to think through. Leaving Eden.
I’m pretty broken, all routines messed up, and I have a headache from too much head banging, originating in muscles on the right hand side of my neck which have been sending STOP signals across the whole network. Problem is, it’s what the bass tells my body to do, amongst other outrageous moves that the Telegraph wouldn’t approve of. Why are they even there? No Telegraph reader is ever going to go.
I head for the healing fields, which is probably the final remnant of the original Glasto. There’s a hippie tent village decorated with Indian textiles, flowers and handmade wooden signs. I get a Shiatsu neck massage from an old guy with a hide like a walnut. He sits with his legs akimbo and gestures to put my head between them. Christ, you think, is this in any way regulated. Is he going to get a hard-on. Gotta trust haven’t you? He knows his stuff, as it happens. Coz I know my Shiatsu. His thumb finds the muscle-lock and after some skull pulling and searing pressure, the pain is released.
Hare Krishas were singing and parading lovingly and soulfully in festive red garb. We were invited to join in, and I just welled up:
I love you’
I thought of our son who died of cancer due to medical mistakes. But it’s something that should be said to all our children because we parents all make mistakes and damage our children in some way. We can only hope that there’s enough green growth left inside them to heal themselves as adults. ‘Everyone cries at Glasto ‘ Nick said.
We were invited to hug a stranger and the smiles vanished. I turned to my right-hand neighbour and we made eye contact with visible relief. Ok I said, chuckling and bracing. But it was actually really heartwarming. Helped he was hot. Girlfriend wasn’t playing.
Luvvy thought of the day- If Spotify is music’s Almighty – all-streaming and all-knowing of our every mood – then Glasto is the Messiah come amongst us.
I had a hydrating hibiscus tea, and carrot cake by the fire pit, and nearby saw a shaded spot with strangers sleeping alongside each other. Isn’t this just wonderful? The ultimate sign of trust. I crashed, on the grass under these long billowing strips of fabric which were bunched round a pole to create a shaded tee-pee effect.
Outside the Handfastings shack, the hippy version of a marriage blessing, a lady was tying colourful ribbons to a twiggy bush, representing shared hopes. Aw.
The phone started buzzing and another big Glasto game started: meeting up with someone in a sea of 250k other people. Essential kit: loud clothes and Vodafone, people, giffgaff is hopeless.
Blondie was on at pyramid stage, Blondie! One of my teen icons. ‘Your hair is beautiful’, Atomic’, ‘Call me’, ‘Heart of Glass’. People carpeted the whole valley wall. To be brutal, many were waiting for Elton John who was performing his umpteenth ‘last gig’.
As we waited, Poppy and I were talking about Nick’s fave stage again, where it all started 3 days ago and I quipped, maybe he’ll ask you to marry him there?! She stared back at me and I read the silence. I had just staggered off home after a big old rave with them last night and… out of the blue:
He said: Will you marry me?
She said: Ya joking
He said: No
She said: Yes!
She explained ‘We don’t believe in marriage, but it’s a manner of saying, will you be my life-partner’. I just sobbed and hugged and sobbed some more, all three of us. So I am totally OTM and we propose to have a meeting of the clans soon.
Back to the music. Blondie was in good shape, too much work on the face maybe. Her voice had lost its strength, but she could sing in tune. The two guitars carried her with exciting solos. I’m not convinced all ageing stars should be resuscitated like this… although I was thrilled to see her ‘in person’ as in, on a great screen, live. To have actually seen her, she would have needed to be 60 ft high.
Our final hurrah was Pop at Woodsies. Talking about music legends, we boycotted Elton John as none of us wanted to go out on a bunch of ballads that we would never choose to listen to under normal circumstances anyway. Caroline Polachek put on a great show, with a constantly changing creative backdrop, but especially her dance routines were so polished. She moved like a goddess, totally synched to the music. She radiated joy and gratitude that we were there and had given Elton the slip.
About 11pm, mid rave, 6 hours before departure, I asked Poppy how it’s gonna play out, seriously, this coach. I found that others of our group were coming too, and they’d look after me. Such sweethearts. I went back and packed. Around 1am I got a message to get up 3:30 and be ready to move out at 4am. I got 2 hours sleep. Some delay later, we got to London and dispersed, back to Reality. But I have decided to keep the dancing going, even on Putney Bridge, to annoy all the drivers stranded in traffic.
Hi! I have a ‘portfolio’ lifestyle, jumping between mum, journalist, curator of my own museum, chauffeur, French tutor and carer. I love music, dance, theatre and dancing in the evenings, and helping others to enjoy life. I’ve been through the mill healthwise, along with my family, and am grateful for every day.