A festival virgin at Virgin Festival...

This year marked the 21st birtday of V Fest in Chelmsford (V Fest is a music festival put on by The Virgin Group. Chelmsford was a town up until recently when it was given city status. It's about 23 miles from where I grew up and about 8 miles from where I live now.)

I had always wanted to go to V Fest but I was too busy being old and married and having babies 21 years ago so I never got round to it until this weekend. Now my boys are both grown ups, my youngest just turned 18 last week and our eldest is nearly 20. I kind of felt this was our time, it was now or never. This year I've been determined to start ticking off things of my 'never done that before' list. (I can't bare the term bucket list, it's too depressing).

I had heard a lot from other people as to what to expect, mostly assured that it was good fun but the toilets were a constant source of dread. But I didn't know how I would feel at a music festival, I have never ever been to one in my life. I'm not really very comfortable in big crowds and not terribly into music. 

I couldn't possibly have foreseen how much I absolutely loved it! It came as much as a shock to me as it has other people. I loved everything, ok so the toilets are a little on the grim side but not as bad as I imagined they were going to be and as I wore wellies (rain boots for you Cindy) and took antibacterial wipes with me it made the experience do able, that and holding your breath and you're set. Believe me when I say I've been to worse loo's. One year we went to the Monaco Grand Prix, we were in a very expensive hospitality area,  the toilets there were like nothing on earth, all the supermodel looking girls strutting around took their bulimia to new lows when they simply walked in and sprayed the entire place with vomit, never seen anything like it, if you ever hear the saying 'oh how the other half live' don't automatically assume it's better, it looked ghastly from where I was standing! hahahahahah.

What do you wear for a festival? well judging by a lot of the young ladies there - not much! hahahahahah, which is all well and good for the young  and beautiful but as an overweight, 43 year old housewife, mother of two it wasn't an option. Day one I played it safe and went with a floaty top, skinny jeans and Wellington boots. By day two and having seen that literally anything goes and the sun had come out I wore shorts and a floaty top, I stuck with the wellie boot option though. I really did feel quite festivaly, without looking over the top. I did yearn for the face glitter but wasn't sure whether to commit to the look or not, but the very kind Leonie gave me a sequin to wear on my face. :)

The only downside is you can't return to your car once you're inside the festival which meant I had to carry all my supplies with me (although I did speak to a lovely man on the gate and he said if I really had an emergency then come and negotiate an arrangement for getting back in which I thought was really kind, so often you find people that are given instructions are not willing to listen to human problems and just stick to the rules coldly and robotically, I have seen a few stories of that nature in the press just lately, its a shame that people don't take the initiative and put themselves in other people's position, it would certainly make the world a nicer place).

We went to V as a family, well sort of, our sons camped there for the weekend, that was a step too far for my liking so hubs and I had daily tickets and bumped into the boys every now and then if we were watching the same bands.

Day one the weather was a bit rough, with high winds and loads of rain, even so I enjoyed it. It made sense to wear jeans and take jumpers for later on. Day two the sun came out most of the day ,the wind dropped and the music bloody brilliant! Wearing shorts was heaven, I was far more comfortable than the day before and I knew I could pretty much guarantee my bag wouldn't leak. We plonked ourselves on the slight hill by the MTV stage and stayed there for hours. Watching musicians I'd never heard of but loving every minute. What could be nicer than sitting eating great food with a glass of wine (bad bad wine as it happens but needs must!) and listening to great music. At one point during Lethal Bizzle's set I was tempted to rush down and join the mosh pit, but Chris did advise against it pointing out I've just spent weeks at a chiropractor trying to sort my back out.  :)  

So many best bits from the weekend, Jess Glynne, Mike Posner, James Morrison ,Zac Abel, Lethal Bizzle, Sigala, David Guetta to name but a few. But the biggest disappointments came in the form of the headline acts, ironically the only reason I wanted to go for to start with. Justin Bieber turned up (albeit early) but clearly didn't want to be there, kept calling Chelmsford London and at one point literally cried about how hard is life is......???... I feel bad for anyone going through a tough time but my goodness me Justin, if there's something wrong do something about it, give up the business of show and go do something fulfilling, don't whinge to an audience that have paid good money to see you, and then there was Rhianna, over half an hour late on stage, whilst we all stood in the rain, no apology -  and gave a lacklustre performance, apparently fame really does mean you can live your life in cliché's and be a diva. Although I had been really excited to see both of them we went off to watch other performers giving it their all on the other stages. Kaiser Chiefs were amazing by the way Rhi Rhi, you should have gone to see them!

Day 1, I decided to play it safe, having never been to a festival before I wanted to just blend in. Top from French Connection, Jeans Eden jeggings from Dorothy Perkins, Boots from Le Chameau.  

Day 1, I decided to play it safe, having never been to a festival before I wanted to just blend in.

Top from French Connection, Jeans Eden jeggings from Dorothy Perkins, Boots from Le Chameau.

 

By day 2 I had realised anything goes, plus the sun had come out, although experince told me to go with wellies despite the sunshine, just for visiting the loos. Top from French Connection, Shorts from Dorothy Perkins, Boots from Le Chameau, Bag from Gucci

By day 2 I had realised anything goes, plus the sun had come out, although experince told me to go with wellies despite the sunshine, just for visiting the loos.

Top from French Connection, Shorts from Dorothy Perkins, Boots from Le Chameau, Bag from Gucci

I truly hadn't expected any of it to be chilled out and relaxing,but it was just lovely sitting on the hill with my hubby watching artists I'd never heard of but loving it!

I truly hadn't expected any of it to be chilled out and relaxing,but it was just lovely sitting on the hill with my hubby watching artists I'd never heard of but loving it!

Bumping into our boys and some of their friends was great. My fave photo of the day is Ben with Arab on his shoulders, full rock chick mode!  Bless him, he did attempt to recreate this and let me go on his shoulders but I could feel him buckling under the strain!! I jest (sort of), although it was more to do with the fact I was terrified up there and thought I'd fall off, for the first time in my life I'm actually glad I'm short! :)   I had been of two minds if going to V fest was for me....now I know. I believe I experienced one of the very few times that having a colostomy is an absolute bonus!  Will I go next year?- very possibly. What do know is I'll definitely continue to tick off things of my never done that before list, what's there to lose!?

Bumping into our boys and some of their friends was great. My fave photo of the day is Ben with Arab on his shoulders, full rock chick mode!  Bless him, he did attempt to recreate this and let me go on his shoulders but I could feel him buckling under the strain!! I jest (sort of), although it was more to do with the fact I was terrified up there and thought I'd fall off, for the first time in my life I'm actually glad I'm short! :)

 

I had been of two minds if going to V fest was for me....now I know. I believe I experienced one of the very few times that having a colostomy is an absolute bonus!  Will I go next year?- very possibly. What do know is I'll definitely continue to tick off things of my never done that before list, what's there to lose!?