You’re approaching Glastonbury tickets all wrong
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If you're currently perusing this without registering for Glastonbury tickets, it's too late. It doesn't matter how many tips or tricks you look up, as registration closed weeks ago and it's a mandatory requirement for purchase.
Don't worry, Glastonbury is not a festival that will let you in without effort. This has been true since the festival's earliest days. When you arrive at Glastonbury, you are committing to a challenging physical and mental experience. The festival is not just about the music, but also about the journey you take to attend it. This is why Glastonbury is worth every penny you invest.
Where else would you carry your own place to stay, not find a bathroom, spend a lot of money on food and drinks, trudge through muddy areas and then awaken on a Sunday morning with dry mouth, wet tent and a drunken man urinating next to your head? And all of this expense and trouble for only £350?
Glastonbury is not a sanitized event, no matter how much people complain about its middle-class demographic (it's worth noting that the first generation of hippies were, in fact, middle class). The chaos starts right from obtaining a ticket, as the first round of them were sold out within 25 minutes on Thursday - just like Willy Wonka's golden tickets.
On Sunday morning at 9am, the biggest part will vanish quickly as groups of friends fight anxiously with their keyboards, yelling in aggravation as they get excluded, but curiously their closest companion prevails. There will be numerous winners flaunting their triumphs on social media with a "sorry, not sorry" attitude. (Note: behaving this way is unacceptable and deserving of social condemnation. Meanwhile, the rest of us will continue to search for access, by whatever means necessary.)
I've been to Glasto so many times, I can't even remember how many. The first time I went was when I was 18 and I tried to climb over the fence. I got stuck at the top, which was around 20 feet high. There were guard dogs barking on one side and a scary drop on the other. It felt like I was in the movie Escape from Alcatraz! Eventually, my annoyed friend helped me down and I almost broke my leg. I definitely wouldn't suggest trying to climb over the fence now - it's way too scary!
For a period of time, we endured several days without any rest, shelter, hydration, or companionship. This was during a time when basic mobile phones dominated (prior to the reign of iPhones), and signal towers were absent from Glastonbury. Our group separated mere hours after arriving and we never managed to reunite with them. They had possession of our food, tents, and clothing...it was a dreadful experience. Yet surprisingly, the following year I eagerly anticipated returning.
Glastonbury is all about enduring challenges for several days, with music being a secondary aspect. It's like participating in a Tough Mudder race, but for those who only wear Lycra if it's in hot pink and sparkly.
Our daily routine has become disgustingly comfortable. With services like Uber and Wizz Air, we can conveniently go anywhere we want. We can even get home deliveries for everything we need, so we don't have to face the long lines at the supermarket or the dreadful commute on the Central Line during rush hour - it feels like a scene straight out of Dante's Inferno. And with the ability to work from home, we can stay snug and cosy all day long. But let's face it, this is not what we were designed for. As humans, we flourish in challenging environments.
Why else would we dedicate our weekends to pushing ourselves in physically demanding sports? It's hard to venture into the countryside and not come across middle-aged men racing down the lanes on bicycles that cost a fortune. Even climbing Ben Nevis requires protective clothing. As for Glastonbury, the festival is all about experiencing both happiness and discomfort.
Drenched, chilly, and suffering from a hangover, I trudged through muddy terrain that reached up to my waist until my feet became pale. I shared a tent designed for six people with twenty individuals. During the festival in Glastonbury, I parted ways with my boyfriend since the environment brought forth the unmistakable aspects of our respective characteristics that separated us. He remained standing in the downpour while feeling mournful in front of the stage that Radiohead performed on back in 1997.
You trudge through long distances with weighty bags on your back, pulling damp tents behind you while some moms and dads - which I just can't wrap my head around - bring along their small children! Every time you go to the small portable building, the smell is overwhelming (not to mention that your bottom is repulsed by even peeking inside those buildings). Every trip to Somerset is simultaneously amazing and unpleasant.
Additionally, each year that I have attended has made a lasting impression on me. I vividly recall being onstage with The Orb during their rendition of "Little Fluffy Clouds" on a sunny day. I also remember watching Nile Rodgers perform "Let's Dance" backstage and standing beneath the starlit sky beneath the renowned oak tree while The White Stripes gave the performance of a lifetime. No one can forget Meg White's groundbreaking drum solo on that unforgettable night.
The one thing I regret the most in my life is when my girlfriend persuaded me to leave the unforgettable Sunday night Glastonbury concert performed by David Bowie in 2000. I have always held it against her.
If I were to offer a suggestion to Emily Eavis, it would be to keep Glasto exactly as it is and avoid including any modern-day amenities that cater solely to millennials. However, I do think it would be worth contemplating the idea of holding two Glastonburys per year.