Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Saturday 27th August 11, Galtres Festival

I did a 10 til 1 shift working with Graham and Mel.  Our role was to take the biodegradable waste and recycle it by stacking it in static pallet bins, lined with cardboard.  Most of the biodegradable stuff was in fact paper plates, soiled with food, and a small amount of other stuff like donuts and pizza crusts. I'm sure that each cubic metre of material will heat up well and compost down pretty well. We didn't take the paper cups as most of them were not compostable; only one outlet had bought proper compostable cups with the compostable symbol on them.
So, we went through the green bins which had been provided for caterers to put waste food in... but unfortunately, most of them had been available for the public to use and had a mix of compostable plates and food, cans and plastics, and assorted other materials.  So we spent quite a bit of time sorting, but we reduced the amount of stuff heading for landfill, and we also sorted out a lot of other recyclables.  We also got extremely muddy.  Moving the green bins through the mud was very difficult, so at times we got lifts in the big tractor shovel which was being used to move bands equipment from backstage to the various performance areas.  This was fun, and speeded up the job.

I got my co-workers their £15 worth of vouchers for their shift, and started planning for my first Fiddlesticks appearance.  I had to get cleaned up, into costume, and then up to the Pash tent to do my show for 4.30pm. I had a shower... bliss.... and then walked with a little trolley borrowed from another camper which was able to carry my box of goodies plus unicycles, and went out of gate 4 (backstage) and up the road (mud-free) and into gate 2 which was nearer the Pash tent arena, so I didn't get TOO muddied up.

My show was tough to pull off.  There was intrusion from the nearby big stage, and the audience weren't all in the Pash tent for my show... many were just sheltering from the rain.  So there was a lot of extraneous noise.  I'm more used to an audience enraptured by my show, and relatively quiet, so my non-amplified voice is easily audible. However, it was a good show, seemed to be well received and there were loads of people wanting to join in... no shortage of volunteers.

So then I was free to have an evening of proper festival, and I ended up in the Arts Barge Marquee with quite a few good conversations, including my friend Sam, and Alison and her daughter Daniella, and music from the Dub Barn Collective, which got me up and dancing.... unusual these days in my mid 40s sobriety.

So, a good and hard-working day at the Galtres Festival.  Well worth being there, despite the awful ground conditions.

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