Glastonbury

Last week I had the absolutely amazing pleasure of being at Glastonbury Festival. For one week you can forget about bills and flat hunting and just enjoy being out in the country doing whatever you want. Where else in the world can you enjoy a conversation about shoving tampons up your nose with a stranger in the queue for the most disgusting toilets ever created?

I’m going to sound like a typical whiny millennial for a while here but the freedom that comes with being at a festival for a week is the best thing. The daily grind of work and university back in London is some days unbearable and although I love being in the big city and I love my job it is so nice to get away and be free.

And it isn’t just about being in a place where there are A-list acts around every corner. My favourite days in the festival where the ones spent watching speakers talk about nuclear power or evolution or how climate change can affect human health. I was learning so much last week that I started talking notes!

So now when my lecturer complains about me missing one lesson that was a repeat of something I’ve already done anyway I can tell her I was at a very important lecture about sustainability within the NHS…followed by a Clean Bandit concert of course.

It isn’t even just about the freedom and the immense number of activities to do. Whilst I was there I met someone who was asking if there were any gay places to hang out. They only exist in reality because they were a safe haven for people but at Glastonbury there was no such need for a safe haven because equality permeated the site. Gays and straights drank tea in harmony and the lay people rubbed shoulders with the stars and we all managed to not get muddy together! (Thank you weather god for blessing us with sunshine)

I long for the day when my life and life around me feels just a little bit more like a festival. I want to wake up every day being excited and not quite knowing what I’ll learn or what to expect. I want to be able to talk to anyone, anywhere and not be met with a look of horror because talking on the tube isn’t the done thing. I want to walk down the street and find The Jacksons playing on a stage in the park….okay the last one I can do without.

But is it so bad that people want these freedoms? Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t but that may be a post for another day. For now it’s back to the daily grind. (But not the daily grindr, 27 days without!)

Until next time Glastonbury, Adios!

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America #2

After the training week there were nine weeks of camp. Generally ever week we’d get a new set of kids although some did stay for a few weeks or come back later in the summer. For members of the YMCA (who ran the camp) it costs around £620 for one week at camp. One kid was there for seven weeks! That’s one expensive summer.

Every week followed a similar routine, we’d wake the kids up nice and early to head to the canteen for breakfast and we always tried to be the first to arrive, which we did on several occasions! That meant we got the fresh hot food as we were at the front of the queue. Tuesday was the best day for breakfast and lunch, pancakes and pizza! Although for the entire lunch period on a Tuesday they would play a song called ‘All I Eat is Pizza’ which I loved…some people not so much.

Between breakfast and lunch the kids would be split down the middle, half doing land activities and half doing water activities. I ended up working at the rifle range most weeks, which was absolutely fine with me! Spending a day out in the sun shooting with some awesome kids. What could be better? Then after lunch we’d head back to the cabins for some down town then back out to switch to land or water.

We were assigned our cabins at the beginning of every week and there would usually be two or three councillors (the grown ups) in each cabin with about ten kids. That was our little family for the week. After dinner we’d get ready for the evening activity. On a Monday this was usually some camp wide activity but there would be multiple routes a cabin could take through the story. One week I had the pleasure of being a Chitauri (from The Avengers) and the kids went round camp doing Marvel related stuff…like a real life video game.

As for time off, we’d have lunch to ourselves one day and then on alternating weeks we’d have a long night or a short night. The short night we could leave once the kids were settled in for dinner but we had to be back by…I can’t remember what time but we had a few hours off. On a long night I think the curfew was 1am so we’d go out for dinner, take a trip to Walmart to stock up on sweets then head back to camp. At least that’s what I did.