Day 1,046: A Night At The Opera


Did I mention Mandy and I had a music festival to go to? Perhaps I should have, cos we did. With Portishead, Flaming Lips and The National on the billing, it was not something I wanted to miss, even if it meant a frantic dash to Sydney afterwards.

With all my things packed up in the morning, we headed over to Matheus’ house and met up with our fellow festival-goers. For reasons I still don’t 100% understand we took a stretched limo to the festival – apparently, between us it was cheaper than getting the bus(!). Yes, I’ve finally become all my worst nightmares of middle-class festival goers skilfully lampooned here by Adam Buxton:

But the limo was pretty damn cool, so I’m not complaining. It’s been an AGE since I’ve been to a music festival: which feels weird for me since I normally go to several every year. Here’s a bunch of drunken festive nonsense I filmed over the last decade.

Today’s festival, “The Gathering”, was a one-dayer, which was good news as I had to get to Sydney as soon as it finished. Like the Leeds festival, it was held on the grounds of a country mansion: a great setting for a gig. This being the first year of The Gathering, there were plenty of teething problems. One major hitch was the shortage of pretty much everything: queues for the toilets, booze, food etc. stretched for miles. If you hate queuing as much as I do that means that you ended up going the whole day without eating anything (I did).

But the music… ah, the music. With the likes of Mercury Rev, The Family Stone and TV On The Radio to watch whilst whiling away the afternoon, not a cloud in the sky and a good bunch of fellow festival-goers I couldn’t be happier. And then, all too soon, it was all over.

It was time to race to Sydney.

Graham Hughes

Graham Hughes is a British adventurer, presenter, filmmaker and author. He is the only person to have travelled to every country in the world without flying. From 2014 to 2017 he lived off-grid on a private island that he won in a game show, before returning to the UK to campaign for a better future for the generations to come.

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