I actually drove past Henham Park on my way to Southwold for the day. The only clue to the magic behind the thick mass of trees was the yellow AA signs assuring you that this was the home of the Latitude Festival. I had the pleasure of driving through that wood later. Cleaning the mud from my wheel arches was super fun. With my special Arts Performer Pack, I checked myself in and drove to the special camp site. I hate to brag, but the showers were private and had gas canisters attached, from what I’ve heard about festival camping, this was a luxury. Con: it was quite the walk. Pro: it worked off the copious amount of free pizza I ate. Despite the name of the pack, I wasn’t there to perform but sell books. This loosely translates to hanging out in the Literature Tent, talking to cool people and running away intermittently to see awesome things.
There were some teething problems at the beginning, for example, the lack of tent and feeling ill from the ridiculous heat. But the tent thing was resolved and I remembered to drink water regularly. The drinking thing helped. Nothing could help me from the insects! Angry hungry gnats. They got me, there was no stopping them, and I’d even bought candles. Those special lemon smelly candles that keep them away! I had thirteen bites on my right leg, eighteen bites on my leg left and one on my hand. They were £2 for three candles! How could they not work?
After being a bug’s buffet, I settled down to sleep on my £12 camp bed from Argos for my first festival experience. It wasn’t my first camping. My family ‘glamped’ for a couple of years before discovering all inclusive package holidays to places with, you know, sunshine. I was used to air beds, electricity, fridges and gas. But that was all sold in favour of the sunshine holidays. So the night before I left for Latitude, I went on a panic buy at Argos: camp bed, torches, and an accessory kit that included a mallet and extra pegs. I was borrowing my aunt’s tent and she warned me there might be a few pegs missing. It went up fine and survived all of the rain that happened that weekend, thanks Auntie Sue and Unci Paul!