We have been on tenterhooks for the past few months as we have waited to hear if we are going to be amongst the bloggers chosen to be Official Camp Bestival bloggers. At 5.30pm on Friday night we heard we were. News that makes me squeal, which is surprising really as I really don’t do festivals. Or indeed camping. But in an effort to get out of my comfort zone we did Camp Bestival last year and loved every second of it. Not just a music festival, but a family festival that encourages children to be children. To roll down hills, to climb trees, to build dens or to sit on the grass and watch Mr Tumble. If you think festivals can’t be for kids, then check out this list of things happening for youngsters at this year’s event: Camp Bestival for Kids. Camp Bestival is ALL about the kids, in fact being there without any last year really made me feel left out!
Ultimately though, this is also about music, and the line up this year is superb. Top of our “must see” list are the Kaiser Chiefs and Alison Moyet. Two of our favourites. I have never seen Alison Moyet, live so can’t wait for that. We have seen the Kaisers before, at the Royal Albert Hall but E was very poorly and incredibly she slept through most of their set. Very rock and roll! If we can tempt you to come, then please do. The legends that are Level 42 will also be there, no doubt accompanied by a few thousand of us on air slap bass for what will, I am sure, be one of those never to be forgotten gigs. Much like James last year who absolutely smashed it on the Castle Stage. As did Chas and Dave, of course.
There is also the Guardian Literary Institute which we loved last year. There is a book at bedtime for children, and throughout the day the chance to hear all sorts of authors chatting about their books, or what they are up to. It was lovely to sneak away from all the hustle and bustle of the main crowds and just sit for an hour and listen to the likes of Jo Wiley and Helen McGinn nattering.
Talking of Helen McGinn, rumour has it that she will be doing another wine tasting. If you don’t know Helen you really should. She is the founder of the Knackered Mothers’ Wine Club and takes all the pomp and snobbery out of wine. What she doesn’t know isn’t worth knowing and she is always happy to slip you a nugget of advice that means you can sound like an expert in seconds. I adore her and will be front and centre row for this wine tasting, it was standing room only last year.
It did all get a bit messy after that as it was in the Jam Jar Bar and um, well, let’s just say they didn’t scrimp on the measures of vodka in the bloody Mary’s and the rhubarb martinis were to die for.
Which was mostly what we did the following morning in our tent. Die. And try to cook bacon sandwiches on a fuelless camping stove thing that gave off as much heat as a tea light. Though we have booked Hotel Bell Tent again this year so we get access to the decent showers and loos. And plug sockets for the hair dryer.
Anybody know if I can get a solar charger for the waffle machine?
PS I have a new “must have” for festival season. You know there is always a “No Glass” rule? Rightly so with grass and bare feet and small children running about. Well there is a brilliant new thing called a Vinnebago. It’s a great flask that keep cold things ice cold for up to 24 hours, hot things hot for 12pm and holds a whole bottle of wine. When you can’t take a bottle of wine. Fill it up with gin and tonic on the way into the main Festival every morning, drink throughout the day and then fill up with coffee from one of the many coffee stalls on the way back to enjoy at 7am.