When I started this post I was sitting in the front of S&E's stall, selling dusty stock to the remnants of festival goers as they hunted for last minute bargains while BB and B helped pack up the stall behind me. This is what I wrote:
Our tent is down and packed in the car, we've refilled our water bottles with cool clear Mt Beerwah spring water, one of the best festival features IMHO, and we're ready to go once we feel we've helped a bit with the stall.
Just had a guy stop and look at himself in our hat mirror and exclaim "DUDE! Why did nobody tell me I had a green spider on my face??!!!1!?" All his friends looked hung over and just as startled. Sure enough, there was a lovely largish thin lime-green chappie, perched charmingly on his sideburn. Classic. We sold him a hat, but I told him the spider had looked better.
Last night we watched the Fire Ceremony to the accompaniment of the most dramatic lightning storm I've ever seen. Imagine a large cleared valley full of people, ringed by trees, with lightning flashing around the rim but not overhead, whilst at one side of the valley is a stage containing musicians and an enormous choir, a huge river of candles, fire-twirling morris dancers, a burning European-style windmill and screaming fireworks. The lightning varied between huge sheets running vertically, and long horizontal stripes that would suddenly fork and shoot out flashing balls. And there we all were, en mass, holding umbrellas in the open! Dear Ceiling Cat, thank you for keeping us all safe -- and entertained.
I have to say, as much as I loved BEING at Woodford, and there were many, many brilliant acts, there was nothing that sparkled about the festival this year, nothing that blew me away. The crowd has homogenised; there are very few eccentricities. I miss the ferals, I miss Rumple, the oddest clown of them all, who has been snaffled up by Cirque du Soleil (although how the hell they wrangle him, I have NO idea), I miss the 'freaks' and the people who used to walk nude around the Chai tent. Sigh. I guess they're finding their own groove somewhere else, somewhere that doesn't have online bookings and where people don't tell the Festival Director that they are annoyed by the number of people dancing in venues and spoiling the view for those who like to sit at concerts (true!).
Anyhoo, now we're back in the 'real' world. We've still got 2 weeks of holiday, and plan to wander down to Kyogle to stay with S&E, mosey over to the Dubbo Zoo, and then hunker down in the Blue Mountains for a while, and this time I have an ironclad excuse NOT to go bushwalking. Unfortunately we won't be catching up with Dr Sista Outlaw, because she has escaped to Vietnam, but when she returns we will be able to tell her just how well her pudding recipe worked served in the heat of a Brisbane Christmas.
So blogging will get sporadic again from here on in; I'm going to lose myself in some good books and a few movies. Thank you to those lovelies who showed and bought me a copy of the Ampersand magazine! It *is* magnificent, isn't it? Such a lovely Penguin flavour (carrying on that penguin daydream theme!). I will be keeping my eye on that one.