So, Earthcore, that bush doof / music festival I bought tickets to ages ago, finally happened! It was SO MUCH FUN, obviously, because how can you not have so much fun when you’re dancing like mad and jumping around in the dirt and camping out of a ride like this? We rented this hippie beast from a company called Wicked. The guys were initially disappointed that we got stuck with the Flower Power van – the other ones were a bit more badass (think Rolling Stones, Johnny Cash, Shrek). I thought it was hilarious though – driving around we got loads of funny stares that never made sense until we remembered what the outside of our van looked like. The back actually said “Pollinate the Nation, Ban the Pill.”
This is Tony’s lucky leprechaun mascot that held up the GPS. He was ultimately unlucky / useless because…
…we BROKE DOWN. Halfway between Sydney and Melbourne we heard a POP and smoke started to rise, green fluid was leaking everywhere and a big tube underneath the hood had violently split open like a roll of premade biscuit dough. As it turns out, when this happens it means your radiator has busted and you have to get towed back into civilization to get it fixed.
Not the plan at all.
Civilization meant a town called Holbrook, and we had to spend the night there. It’s the sort of place where excitement involves setting off fireworks behind the bakery and people put up HAVE YOU SEEN ME? signs in store windows when their chickens go missing. Abbey and I spotted a sign for a burlesque show at the town bar that night – we wanted to go, but surprisingly enough the guys shot us down. Lame! Anyway, this is Holbrook in all its glory.
The town has 1400 people and one claim to fame – the very large WWII submarine sitting in the middle of it. Sitting on it is one of the things you can do when you’re done setting off fireworks and looking for your neighbor’s lost chicken.
Our radiator arrived at 1 AM on a bus from Melbourne. We got up and snagged it and got the van sorted out in the morning. (We actually broke down again five minutes after leaving town. Luckily they were able to fix what was wrong and it only took them about an hour, during which time we sat in the park and hung out with a couple of Japanese hippies who gave us a demonstration of these little African shake-y gourd instruments they played. We met them several more times at the festival but they didn’t seem to remember us.)
But we finally made it!!
The main stage.
Somehow in my 27 years of being alive, this was the first music festival I’d ever been to. I’d been to concerts and one-day events before but never camped out. There were four stages that played music the entire three days – even shows at 6 and 7 am. Intense. I hadn’t heard of any of the artists that played – most of it was trance, which I knew (and, ok, still know) almost nothing about. To be honest I thought it might be too much for me because I’d never been much into that sort of thing. Previously, when I’d go out with groups of people on my travels, I used to get frustrated because I was forever outnumbered (especially by the Europeans) when it came to music choice. They always wanted to find some electronic nonsense to dance to, and my little American hip-hop-loving heart just wasn’t having it.
So I was really surprised to find that I loved it. Live trance on massive speakers in the dark out in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by an energetic crowd of people wearing fake fur coats/headdresses/hippie ponchos/steampunk goggles/things that glow is pretty surreal. I consider myself converted!