I don’t know how but for some reason Visions Festival somehow has managed to fall on the day before my changing something in my life drastically. Two years ago it was my quitting my job and starting uni, last year it was my moving to Stockholm and this year it was my last day of my summer in London. It sets up for a dramatic and wild day, that’s for sure.
The summer was everywhere and Daniel had convinced me to wear my black denim jeans so that I could crowd surf like last year. It sounded like a brilliant idea, reinforcing my false image of being a badass bitch. Out in the near 30 degree heat it seemed less fun though and one street down my hair was sticking to my back.
After lunch at the new Allpress Cafe in Dalston (go there it’s great!) we swung by the Princess May Car Boot Sale in Dalston where Amel and Astrid were hustling to try and scrape together some cash for their Greece trip. It didn’t go to well though, and three hours in they were too hot and too hungover and packed up.
By coincidence Danielle and Natalie were there too, hustling real hard.
Natalie had borrowed a car and driven there seven in the morning to get a good spot in between all the real car boot sale pros. Apparently some regulars had made comments like ‘I can tell that you’re new here, considering your price range. You’ll learn honey.’ and about how they laid up their stuff and all. DID NOT KNOW THAT THIS WAS A SPORT.
I adored how Danielle, like always, had gone full in for her look as a yard sale professional. <34546460
By this point my skin was boiling so Daniel and I went down the road to Voodoo Ray’s Pizza for some frozen margaritas. The streets were packed with mums carrying naughty tree year olds and Poundland bags and vendors screaming out extra price on tomatoes. About here Paul texted us to hurry down to Bethnal Green to pick up our wristbands and get the party starting. And so we did.
In a queue turning round three street corners we lined up with Seb, Wilma, Simon, Paul and Bex. Plus some ice creams and beers. I thought we would miss the whole day seeing this queue but it moved fairly quickly. Just as we approach the front I look at Saboune and his lip is as big as a camel’s! Somehow a bee had stung him without him noticing and his whole face was transforming into a gigantic balloon. So he had to turn in the door and head to the hospital. : ‘ (
The festival started up super weird and the first bands were shit!!!! Fortunately the live band settings are always pretty but halfway through JJ we left because those Swedes looked more miserable then I do in the midst of winter.
Instead we went to see the Spanish band Hinds, that I had never heard of but at the words ‘an all girls rock band declared Europe’s most exciting band by NME’ I was intrigued. And boy was it amazing. Paul was standing next to me screaming how these chick were incredible. With bras hanging out and ponytails twirling they went mad with their guitar riffs. Boys had boners and girls were drooling and I fell in love. Finally a band who love being on stage! Girls huh.
After the show I had to talk to the band so I hung around the fence, asked about touring and records and got my fangirl pic taken. The air in the venue was saturated with exasperation that turned the light into a mist.
The whole crowd was ecstatic afterwards talking about the performance.
We moved outside to buy burgers and beers, enjoying the approaching summer evening high on tunes and endorphins. An extroverts dream.
The whole afternoon we ran between venues screaming along to tracks we knew so well or heard for the first time, got stomped on by heavy doc martens, fell into puddles of spilled pints and moshed with band members. Fat White Family headlined around midnight and it felt like the whole festival had waited for this act all day, especially as they cancelled last minute last year.
The moment right before a big band walks on is my favourite. The crowd’s mumble has faded and you can hear the vibrations from the instruments’ amplifiers, screaming to get used. The expectations of the audience turns into electricity and with a boom the band storms out and the all around you hear the screaming of hundreds of full grown people, forgetting everything what it means to be composed. And of course they open with that one fucking song we all love.
We ended up in Paul and Bex’s living room doing stupid things and looking at taxidermy butterflies until four am. I walked home holding Daniel’s hand, feeling empty and tired. My black jeans didn’t crowd surf but they were pretty happy anyways. The morning after I was once again on a plane far away from everything I love.
Also see my previous festival adventures:
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