Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Isle of Wight Festival 2014

I am an extremely indecisive person. So indecisive that when I started thinking of what to blog about next I didn't know where to start. I originally intended to do a post about the festival lifesaver products that got me through the entire four day event, but then decided I'd do an entire review of the whole thing seeing as my blog motivation has been lacking for a while (hey it's summer...give me a break!) Hopefully you'll take some of my advice on board if you're going away to a festival yourself this year! 

The decision to go to the Isle of Wight Festival all came down to the fact that I was pretty much a festival virgin and wanted to reward myself after completing my first year of university (thank goodness for that...). After my wristband had been purchased via the lovely Ticketmaster, it dawned on me that my lack of camping experience meant that I actually didn't have a clue about what to take in my rucksack (I know...first world problems). A month before we left, my boyfriend and I even set up the tent in the garden so I could get some 'festival practise' seeing as I am what everyone calls a 'city girl at heart'. I think without a shadow of a doubt my 'go-to' festival product would most definitely have to be Pampers baby wipes! You don't realise how amazing these little things are until you've been to a festival. I could take my make-up off with them, take them with me to those god awful toilets you have to use (and sorry Isle of Wight but I'm not paying for a £19 wristband to gain entry into the luxury 'When Nature Calls' loos even if I am squeamish about hygiene), have a mini shower with them to cool yourself under the unbearable heat that was Thursday afternoon or even become a domestic goddess and wash the used pots and pans with them! Whoever thought that a toiletry to wipe a baby's bum would be so useful?  I cannot stress enough how important it is to take a small little shoulder bag for walking around and being in large crowds. It will be light enough to not get in the way of anything but will be able to keep your ID, money, lip balm and sun cream in just in case. My strawberry anti bacterial hand gel from Primark came everywhere with me because it was always in the bag and was used as an alternative to the gross sinks and washing facilities. Girls, if you want to remain sane then TAKE A DRY SHAMPOO WITH YOU! Batiste Dry Shampoo really helped to spruce up my hair whenever it felt greasy and disgusting. I know that's all part of the festival experience but we still want to look and feel gorgeous don't we? I bought the one called 'Fruity and Cheeky' and sprayed it in every night before I hit the pillow so it worked into the hair for the morning. It has a lovely, strong cherry smell that lasted throughout the day and made me feel a bit fresher, which is always good. Another idea is to purchase a hat... not just because it looks pretty and bohemian, but it will keep the heat off your head.  

There were of course many highlights. A worm slithering across my bare foot is one I wish to remove from my memory but besides that it was an incredible weekend. Biffy Clyro proved that you can still sound even better live than your studio recorded album (I bought the T-shirt!) and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers' stage presence was on point, gaining them a new fan and my car some new tunes to blast as a result. The Red Arrows were also spectacular... even if it scared the living daylights out of me as they came out of nowhere whilst myself and my camp mates were tending to the tedious barbecue.       

Some lessons were also learnt throughout that weekend... but we all learn from our mistakes right? When we were queuing up to pitch an area for our tents I developed a rather unpleasant sunburn that wasn't a bundle of laughs when it came to sleeping on the blow up mattress.  I had stupidly left my sun cream back in my car and didn't have anything to cover my sore shoulders. Luckily enough I was able to walk into town the next day to buy a summer shawl... this definitely saved me a festival full of pain and misery. So ladies if you get burnt this year, then invest in one of these! Not only do they look so fashionable, they are also really light to wear so you can wear them at whatever time during the day. No matter what you tell yourself, you will become skint and poor no matter how much you try to budget your spending. Most of your hard earned cash will be spent on food and of course booze (never down a vodka slush puppy in a drunken attempt to get to the main stage on time). I don't understand what was going through the event planner's heads because we NEVER USED THE FESTIVAL APP. The reason? Because for the duration of the weekend you will more than likely have a dead phone battery and will have to do a half an hour sweaty trek to your car just to charge it an extra worthless 10%. Also it's a festival... you want to enjoy being with your mates and having a laugh instead of checking your news feed on Facebook every minute of the day. My camp mates came up with a good idea for next time... to print the line up and have it stuck around the campsites (everyone wins). Also, whenever you are at a festival a guy named 'Alan' will be shouted over a billion times in a sort of call/response type thing... apparently this is what people call 'festival tradition'. No one ever found out who Alan was, but he seemed to be quite popular amongst everyone late at night. 

All I know is that my first festival experience was an awesome one with some hilarious memories! Which festivals are you heading off to this year?