I know Meredith Music Festival came to an end roughly five days ago. I know the hangovers have subsided and the dust washed from each punters set of eyes. The sunburn has probably turned to a beautiful golden tan and the hours of sleep lost are now more than made up for. BUT, I didn’t want to not tell you all about my Meredith experience, a festival I will return to every year as long as I am living in Australia.
On Friday morning I joined Megan, Ellen, Tom and Jess in Brunswick to make our way out of the city and onward to Meredith. Most of the people I know attending the event had made plans to get up before the sun in order to secure the best possible camping spot. Luckily for us the other half of our team (Matt, Jake, Adelaide, Kate and Alex) sacrificed their sleep inns to take our tents along and set them up just meters from the entrance to The Meredith Super Natural Amphitheatre or ‘The Sup.’ We missed most of the traffic to arrive at Meredith at around 2pm to find out tents set up at Bush Camp. After air mattresses were pumped up and chilly bins were filled with ice it was time to take in the sites of the festival.
Before the music began at ‘The Sup’ the grass was green and lush. It was amazing to see this area when it was moderately untouched before hundreds of couches were bought in and set up to remain in their prime viewing spots between the gum trees for the remainder of the weekend. When the music started it seems as though everyone that possessed a ticket had arrived and the first glimpses of those that had had a little too much to drink began to appear. I watched one girl in the late afternoon vomit violently against a fence and another guy asleep under a pile of cans next to a rubbish bin.
Although the line-up did include some pretty stellar acts, no one really makes the trip to Meredith for the music. I must admit that even when I purchased my ticket there was only one or two names that were remotely familiar too me. However, after doing my research I feel in love with The War on Drugs who were a huge highlight on Friday night. When ‘Red Eyes’ came on you could long around ‘The Sup’ and see nothing but smiles. I ended up losing everyone and making my way back to the tent at around 2am (I think) to fall straight to sleep.
I woke up at 9am the next morning to what felt like a furnace burning inside the tent. I quickly popped my head outside to get a breath of air and wipe the thick layer of sweat of my forehead. The first thing that ran through my mind that morning was ‘How can I ever drink again? Little own start again in a few hours.’ I left the other dozy Australians at the tent to head back to the sup accompanied by my bottle of water to watch Tiny Ruins, a New Zealand musician who I had been following since early this year. As I sat on the slope with my chin resting on my fist as I listened to the sleepy tunes, rather fitting for that early set time. ‘Me at the Museum you at the Winter Gardens’ had been a favourite song of mine from this year so somehow I was bought to a much healthier state and when the set was complete I was able to stand without so much as a head rush.
The first beer to go down that day actually was surprisingly refreshing due to the extreme heat that was beaming down on a dusty Meredith. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th even better and by the time I was ready for my 5th can of Boags, I was ready to join the party that many others had already began around me. We ventured into see Ghostface Killah, Ty Segaull and De La Soul. It was at this stage that my memory began to become somewhat of a haze. My last memory was cradling a baby doll at the tent of my housemates and their group on the other side of the festival. Apparently I staggered home to Bush Camp at around 4am. That pretty much sums it up.
Meredith was a stand out festival in my eyes for many reasons, however I think that you could filter all those reasons under one umbrella: Meredith’s ‘No Dickhead’ policy. Not once did I see any kind of questionable behaviour from anyone. Instead everyone was friendly to one another, happy to chat or share their spot in the shade (A complete contrast to the god awful Stereo-Sonic in town the weekend before).
I was so happy to spend the weekend with my group of nine Australian’s. Although there were many in the group I had spent little time with, by the end of the weekend I realised what fantastic people they all were. I always felt included and so much effort was made to accommodate me in this established group of friends. Even if I was laughed at for using the word ‘Chilly Bin,’ I couldn’t have imagined Meredith being any better with another group of people.
(DISCLAIMER: Right now it is my last day of work for 2014… I may have had one too many beers at lunch so please excuse my pooooor grammer/spelling. I tried my best given the circumstances)