E+E column: Feeling dazed, but beautifully so…

Apologies for the pun-tastic title but having just come back from the Beautiful Days festival, held at our very local Escot near Ottery, I couldn’t resist the opportunity for the play on words! This was our first festival experience as a family and despite a lot of rain, a lot of mud and not much sleep, it was a resounding success…I think.

It was with quite a lot of apprehension that Dan and I approached the weekend. Were we mad to be taking 3 small children to a music festival, especially a six month old who likes to move and a 3 year old who doesn’t like loud or busy places?! But there’s a reason why Beautiful Days is known as a family festival and our every need was met. We took ear defenders which solved the noise issue for Isaac and a fire breathing robotic metal dragon absolutely delighted him and provided frequent requests of visiting it. We discovered ‘kids row’, a group of tents including a library, story telling tent and soft play tent that were free to go and hang out in, letting Elijah test out his new found crawling skills in a less muddy environment than the rest of the festival. And Sophia? Well, she loved it all. From the kids yurt where she taught a lady to finger knit to the circus skills tent to the upcycled drumming area to the fairground rides.

But actually what both of them loved the most was playing with their friends (old and new) and listening to good music. Dan and I were so happy to see them really engaging with some of the musicians we went to see, heads bobbing and great big smiles spreading over their faces. As lovers of music and keen amateur musicians, it was very gratifying to see that we have passed down the same appreciation for music. In fact, Sophia was so eager to be in the midst of it all that she ran off and managed to get semi lost, not once but three times, in her search for good music. Although stern words were had, it was hard to be too cross when it was such an innocent and sincere pursuit that sparked the action.

The weather, as you might have noticed (!) was fairly shocking and the continuous heavy showers actually led to us admitting defeat a day early and packing up and heading home on Sunday instead of Monday. We were sad to miss some of the artists that were billed for that afternoon and even sadder when the law of sods came into force and Sunday evening was beautifully warm and sunlit but such is life. The heavy rain on Monday vindicated our decision and we were glad to have enjoyed our first festival together as a family so thoroughly and to have left on a high rather than even wetter, muddier and let’s face it, probably pretty damn grumpy on the Monday instead!

23.08.15

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