Yesterday, 135,000 people rocked up at the Glastonbury Festival, to spend the next five days listening to lots of loud music and generally having a wonderful time. I’m not going (I have never been), but I’m not jealous because – you know what? Going to Glastonbury sounds exactly like having an allotment to me, and I’ve got one of those.
- For starters, Glastonbury is all about the mud. Mud, mud, glorious mud. If it rains enough, people will be mud surfing. I can do that, on the plot, if I pull a few more weeds up. It even has a nice slope I can slide down.
- It’s the mud, of course, that made posh wellies fashionable. I have distinctly un-posh wellies, but at least I have somewhere to wear them, on my muddy allotment. No point in buying an outfit that’s not going to get worn….
- Loads and loads of people missed out on Glastonbury tickets, because the event was over-subscribed and the tickets sold out in an hour and forty minutes. And lots of people are on waiting lists, waiting to get their hands on an allotment.
- Glastonbury has a Peace Garden. My allotment is a peaceful garden. It’s all about getting in touch with Mother Nature, and having somewhere to chillax.
- There’s no Wi Fi. In the normal run of things, you can’t expect a field (or an allotment) to have any internet access. They’ve solved that for Glastonbury this year, by turning Michael Evis’ eco-friendly tractor into a 4G hotspot. They can drop that off at the allotment when they’re done with it, it will come in handy.
- A power supply would be a useful thing to have on the allotment, as well. Michael Evis has installed a mass of solar panels on his cow shed. I might get a shed next year, but the nearest I’m likely to get to solar power is one of those little fountains….
- More importantly, wherever there are people, there’s the perennial problem of where to pee. Not on the land, apparently. And it appears that Glastonbury last year was cancelled because the Olympics caused a shortage of portaloos. Allotment owners are lucky if their site has a composting toilet; most would be happy with a private corner and a watering can….
- And the water supply is a problem. If there’s no shed to fit a downpipe to, it’s hard to fill your butt. When people have to be able to drink the water, you’re in to plasson water pipe territory. 10,000 metres of drinking water hose is needed for the festival. Me, I have a trough and a watering can (but no private corners).
- Paths have to be maintained. That might mean mowing the edges of your allotment. At Glastonbury, they have six miles of temporary walkway.
- Badgers aren’t welcome. On allotments, they rampage through the crops and trough all the sweetcorn. Michael Evis is supporting the badger cull because he’s on the side of the cows. I’m on the side of the badgers, but then I haven’t planted any sweetcorn this year.
- Gazebos aren’t welcome either. It’s hard to pin them down on an allotment, they cast shadows and one gusty day and they’ll be on someone else’s plot. It’s the same problem at Glastonbury – people leave them behind and they become someone else’s problem.
- People leave tents behind, too, but they can be recycled into resuable gift wrap. Most people won’t find a tent on their allotment, but allotmenteers are the Wombles of modern world, making good use of anything they do find.
So there you go – that’s 12 reasons why the Glastonbury Festival is exactly the same as an allotment. How about you? Have you discovered the perfect way to have the Glastonbury experience at home, in your garden, or on your allotment? It can involve pie, that’s fine. Pie is good ;)