We woke on Saturday to a strange sound. The sound of no flapping canvas. Not, thankfully, because our tent had blown away in the night, but because the gale force gusts had dropped and all was strangely still.
Pit pat, pit pat.
The theme of the day had begun, it was going to be a wet one.
Coffee was needed to get us firing on all cylinders and at the Dorset Farmers Market tent we found the Dorset Coffee Co. who served the best, and cheapest (that we found) coffee on site. Even worth queuing in the rain to get it.
We had loads of stuff ticked on the programme to try and see on Saturday but the first one on the list was my choice alone, and alone I was as I stood in the crowd at the Castle Stage jumping up and down to Nellie the Elephant with Dick and Dom.
It does sound a bit odd as I type it in the cold light of day but we all have our guilty pleasures.
Dick and Dom were swiftly followed by the cast of West End Musical ‘School of Rock’ who gave us a brilliantly energetic taste of the show despite the rain which was still coming down steadily.
We spent a bit of time dodging in and out of the rain and, thanks to our tent being so close to the action, managed a quick afternoon kip to recharge our batteries. Plenty of energy was needed for the night ahead and the evening festivities began with Holly Johnson.
This was REALLY exciting for me. Frankie Goes to Hollywood were one of the first bands I saw live, 3rd April 1985 at The Brighton Centre, and I was a massive fan. I was a bit worried that HJ would only play his newer, solo stuff, but we got most of the Frankie hits thank goodness. He did seem a bit bewildered throughout the whole process, and unfortunately couldn’t give us Two Tribes due to time restrictions but as he was a childhood hero I can basically forgive him anything.
We had wormed our way to the front of the Castle Stage for Holly Johnson and were staying firmly put for Madness.
If there is such a thing as a slick shambles then Madness were it. They gave an artful impression of boyish larking around when, actually, they delivered a bang on professional set playing all the expected hits but still feeling fresh. I was hoping to see a bit more Nutty Boy dancing from the dads in the crowd but as we were right at the front it could have all been going on behind me. It was a feel good, upbeat, inclusive party – all sorts and all ages just having the best time.
Madness said goodnight and as they cleared the stage we realised that actually, it was raining really hard. The grass was disappearing and smooth rivers of mud were taking its place, thank God for wellies and not caring what you look like.
Final stop of the night was back in The Big Top for the Silent Disco. I am probably the only person in the civilised world to have not experienced a silent disco before now, they seem to be de rigueur at every 18th/21st/50th/wedding reception. However, as a silent disco virgin I was really looking forward to finding out what it was all about.
For those of you who have been living under the same rock as me and not SD’d before, it is basically a disco with no music playing through speakers only through wireless headphones worn by everyone in the room. It’s brilliant because you are all dancing away like crazy but then if you stop for a moment, remove the headphones and look around, there is just a sea of mad dancing folk but no music. A very surreal experience. Camp Bestival upped the ante by making it a DJ dance off – there were two channels on the headphones and you could choose which DJ to listen to. We had Soho Radio versus Dick and Dom, no prizes for guessing who I tuned in to!
We waded through the mud back to our tent and fell into a happy, danced out, rain soaked sleep, just keeping one ear open for Teen 2 as she crept back from the Bollywood tent at 2.45am.
Coming next: Adventures at Camp Bestival Episode 5 – The Final Chapter