Festival ramblings

I’m travelling home from the boyfriend (edit: ok, I’m home now, but I was on my way when writing this ;)). One of my trains had a slight delay, but because of my tight schedule, that originally lead to a delay of arrival-time in the town where I live of two hours. I managed to decrease that to an arrival one hour later than planned. Still, it’s no perfect ending to an almost perfect little week with the boyfriend.

We met friends of his, that I like a lot as well. We went to the swimmingpool (the plan was the sauna, but that was females only on mondays… not nice! but the pool was very relaxing too). We ate sushi at a nice restaurant, drank cocktails at another place. I made amazingly nice carrot-orange soup for him, and he cooked extremely good rice with baked turkey and manderin-thyme-creamsauce for me. But most importantly we went to a two day metal festival: the first time we were at a multiple day festival as a couple, and the first time we saw one of our favourite bands live together.

Being at the festival together-together took a little adjustment from me. The first two times I went to a festival (the summers of my 18th and 19th year, both years the same event) I went with my then boyfriend, and the huge amounts of (drunk) men scared me, so I never wanted to go anywhere alone without them, or anyone else we had in our small party. I also wasn’t into metal that much, so most of the bands did not matter much to me. Actually, looking back, there were no bands I would have minded not seeing. I went there because I liked the music in general, because my partners liked it, and probably because I liked the idea of going to a festival.

When I went that same festival again, I was 21 and I terribly regretted not going to the festival the year in between. In the time between the festival in my 19th and 21st year the asshole ex had broken up with me, I had become stronger, more self-aware, and I had met an amazing group of friends: my metal friends, who call themselves Heerschers. We rented a bus with our whole group, since the festival is quite long drive, and the whole festival-journey seemed like one huge school-trip. Only with better music and more alcohol. Because of the Heerschers and the safe environment they provided, other (male) metalheads didn’tt scare me anymore, and it felt amazing just walking there by myself, just being there. I had an amazing time, also because I had gotten way more into metal than before, and loved seeing certain bands.

The year thereafter, 2008, was the year I met the boyfriend and fell in love with him (technically I met him there for the 2nd time, but that is something for another time). Although we spent most of the festival together, I still had this since of ultimate freedom. To return to the here and now: the freedom had to be redifined this year, because of being with a boyfriend and because it was just the two of us and not a larger group. One of the things I always love at festivals are conversations with random strangers. Sometimes just about the bands playing or the weather, sometimes making weird jokes, sometimes unexpected deep talks. That is just more difficult with only your partner there, because talking to someone else very easily means somewhat “abandoning” the partner, especially if you are the more extravert of the couple. And I am very extravert, when I’m in the mood. Being a women, a minority group at a metal festival where at least 75% is male, also makes it very easy to be talked to by strangers, but being talked to for the reason of gender only is also something not very nice for the said partner. It happened that guys just started talking to me (another very likely topic: where you’re from and how long the travelling took), and they completely ignored the boyfriend. Com-ple-te-ly. After a little while (after getting back to our tents on the first day, I would say) we got into a rythm of how we both felt comfortable, and everything went quite smoothly from then on. I even got an unexpected kiss on the cheek from a strange guy for saying I did not like a certain band, which the boyfriend did not really like, but did not mind either (especially because it was really unexpected, and I probably couldn’t have done anything to prevent it). And there was some nice talk with a German guy and later on with someone from New Zealand.

So I enjoyed myself immensely and had lots of opportunity to relax the past days, before the moving and the start of my master thesis this week.

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