Eleanor’s Blog – 13 August

It’s me again! Yes, I’m back with more updates on what I’ve been doing over the summer. Last time we spoke, I was heading off to Gloucestershire to the wonderful 2000trees festival for the weekend. As predicted, it absolutely chucked it down with rain every day! My friend Ali and I undertook an adventure by train to get there, as the festival was near Cheltenham. Buying train tickets in advance and using my 16-25 railcard meant the tickets were pretty cheap, and the festival was free too since we were volunteering.

When we were there, we met up with a friend from Manchester who lives close by the festival site, and some of his friends from home. Everyone was really lovely! I had a crackin’ weekend, listening to some awesome music from the likes of The Futureheads, Pulled Apart By Horses, The Guillemots and 65daysofstatic to name but a few- and all for £0, in return for just a few hours work. We were mostly working on the entrances to the stages, checking wristbands which meant we were able to hear the music anyway and everyone was dead nice to us. Volunteer opportunities are often shown on the festival’s website, and I’d definitely recommend it!

Once I got back from Trees and managed to get all the mud off myself, my clothes, my tent (and somehow, my toothbrush…) it was on to another MAP life conference at The University of Manchester. As a student ambassador, I helped out with yet more MAP students coming onto campus for a taste of uni life. My group were really sweet and made me the best tshirt ever on the last day, somehow incorporating the Harry Potter Gryffindor logo and winning a prize for being so creative!

This summer has also been, how could I ignore it, THE OLYMPICS. I didn’t go and see any of the events, but I of course watched loads of them on TV. I also found out from my Grandma that I’m somehow distantly related to British Gold-medalist Jessica Ennis?!?!! Unfortunately I don’t think I’ve inherited her athleticism and sporting prowess, but who knows, you could see me competing in the 2016 Olympics yet!

After a couple of weeks of festival-recovery it was back to the fields again, this time for Y Not Festival, pretty local to where I live. We were volunteering again which meant another free ticket, along with free food and discounted merchandise, not bad! I had a lovely time seeing people from home as well as friends from Uni, and the music was amazing. My personal favourite acts were Pulled Apart By Horses (who if you’ve been paying close attention I’ve seen at a gig in Manchester and at 2000trees festival) who always put on such a high-energy show, and We Are Scientists, who headlined on the Sunday night. On Monday morning I woke to find I’d lost my voice as I’d been singing along rather too enthusiastically! There’s always more to festivals than just the music, and with dodgems, kids activities, crafts, stalls, and it was even rumoured it’s own olympics, for a small festival , ynot certainly has a lot.

After returning home (and spending an hour queuing to get out of the car park) it was back to my lovely real bed and lovely hot food. It also meant back to decorating, which I’ve been helping my mum do for most days throughout the past couple of months. There’s a lot of work to be done, but hopefully it’s getting there! Whilst I’m decorating at home, my house in Manchester is also being decorated ready for us to move into as soon as it’s done. I’m pretty excited! My friend Ali, soon to be one of my housemates, hosted a party at the house last week. It was good to see people from Uni and home, as Manchester isn’t too far to travel. I haven’t been on a night out in ages, so I really enjoyed myself, but hopefully there’ll be a night out in Manchester on the cards soon too.

Also, more exciting news, I’ve started driving lessons! I’ll be learning around where I live rather than in Manchester, so it means I’ll be popping back and forth again next year, but hopefully I’ll be passed by christmas!! I thought I’d be dead scared but I’m really liking driving. I shall keep you updated on how it’s going!

Next weekend is yet another festival, Shambala, this time as a paying customer rather than as staff. I shall be back after that with some more summer holiday tales!

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