Tuesday, 9 October 2012

I heard the party's here

And I'm back.
I previously stated that roadtripping to Rocking the Daisies could be at either end of extremes: awful or awesome. Maybe it was a bit of both, a bit of loneliness and fun and happiness and depression and incomprehension strewn in between just to mix it up. Maybe it was better this way.

When going to Koppi, I remember groups of people, camping together; making a fire; chilling in front of the stages and enjoying the music; and, partying at night together. The camp site there is an important place, since it is where you spend half of the time. Also, it is not unusual to just pitch up at some stranger's camp site, be offered a drink and make new friends. Oppikoppi is gezellig.

By comparison, RtD is not. Since it purports to be some kind of hippie-hipster-eco-festival, camping and cars are kept separate, and no glass is allowed in. Also no fires are allowed. Therefore, there is no reason to have a camp site to chill at, and the tents are just pitched at random. At Koppi you try to get a few trees, here you don't give a f*ck since you'll probably just be sleeping there. What neighbours? What sharing a beer? Not these cool kids.

Shock number two came after queuing for two hours to shower for a full five minutes. To me, showering at festivals is nice, but it is optional. You are there for the music, not to make sure you look your best. Again I was very wrong. These girls have ghd-straighteners and hair dryers. They also don't leave the shower-tent without putting on their made-up face. And I'm not talking just some mascara here. Hells no.

The outfits are also worth mentioning. I am used to taking semi-old clothes so that if something happens I don't mind throwing them away. Ahhhhhhhhh non. All these girls appear to be in dire need of nourishment, and they all wear their mother's high waisted jeans, but cut off just short enough to show the rounding of the gluteus maximus. The crop top, angle boots and large hats were also a staple. The gentlemen all looked like they weren't trying to look cool but that they were secretly spending quite some time on getting their hair looking just messy enough. The boys I went with spent more time in the bathroom getting ready than I did.

I mean, this is not necessarily a negative thing, but I felt as though at RtD the festival is a constant fashion show, and that music is just something happening in the background. Except for when Bloc Party played. They are INTERNATIONAL, after all. Rocking the Daisies was somewhat of a disappointment. No one seemed to respect the local bands, like the Dirty Bounce Collaboration (with Mr Cat and the Jackal contributing members), Machineri or even hip-star of the moment, Jeremy Loops. This festival felt as though it was more important to be seen, to tell others afterwards "Ja, bru, sorry I missed you at Daisies, hey, Ja, it was awesome", to have been there without really caring about any band past Bloc Party.

A festival is definitely not the place to be lonely. At Koppi, even when I went only with my friend Sliv, there were always others around to go party with, there were always random people that were willing to meet new people and just have a good time. Here, the cliques were already established, and no one new was cool enough to break into the established order of coolness. The Capetonians were constantly remoulding themselves to be more avant garde, more advanced, more hipstamatic than even the app. Me? I was stuck, rigid, a piece of unwanted, a Nokia 3310 in a sea of iPhone 5s.

Perhaps it is my own fault. I was pretty pissed (not the drunk pissed, the pissed off one) because my homeboys had their own agendas for the festival, which is fine. But it wasn't my fault that things had changed, that the original party was not going, and after three days of being supportive and understanding and adapting to other ways of doing things I just felt a bit die moer in.  If I could try to be understanding, so should they. On Saturday we had a tent-round-table, and sorted it out, which was great, since after that the last night of RtD was quite fun despite the rain and the cold. Nothing a bit of Havana Rum and freshly squeezed orange juice can't fix, hey.

The roadtrip, the Daisies, it was all an experience, neither best nor worst. Like gezellig, I am trying to find that one word to describe the festival, the one that will capture its essence. Beautiful? Eco? Different? I'll settle on oppervlakkig.

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