Facebook has reminded me that it’s been exactly a year since I went to Glastonbury, so I thought it would be a good time to share this little story. If this is a romcom, kill the director…
Circumstances had led me to unexpectedly going to Glastonbury on my own, as part of a group I’d found on the good old internet called Camp Solo. It was strange and wonderful and sad and free all at the same time.
It was the Saturday night, and after watching a gorgeous tear-inducing set by Birdie, I sped over to the Pyramid stage with Sarah and Liam, two other Soloers, to see Foo Fighters.
BEST. GIG. EVER. Amazing music, great show, a crowd that was up for it without being scary (I’m easily scared, can you tell?) Plus, I was the perfect level of drunk and covered in glitter.
We made bffs with the people next to us, as is the way at festivals- a girl who’d lost her friends but was having a grand old time, and a rather nice topless boy whom I’ll call ‘Matty’. Matty was a rugby player and said he was on some amazing drugs. He took turns putting us all on his shoulders, and I looked out at a sea of thousands of people and thought ‘this moment is pure joy’. Me and ‘I’ve lost my friends’ girl burst into happy tears when they had fireworks during the last song. I found increasingly unsubtle excuses to touch Beautiful Topless Man, and by the end of the gig he was holding my hand as we left to go to a bar together as a group.
But Sarah needed the loo and, as it a universal truth that drunk women can’t wee unaccompanied, we wandered off to sort ourselves out, certain in our inebriation that would definitely be able to find the group- after all, there were only a few tens of thousands of people walking in the same direction.
Shock horror, Matty et al were nowhere to be seen. We went to the crowded bar to have a cursory look for him, but surprisingly my friends were quite a lot less invested in me getting laid than I was. So we got some chips and I accepted that Matty was destined to be ‘that boy I lost in the crowd’. We hadn’t swapped numbers or even last names so that was that.
A few days later, having arrived home exhausted and in desperate need of a bath, I got a message from another Soloer saying they’d got an interesting email that day, from someone who said he’d really hit it off with a girl called Penny and was trying to find me! Turns out that Liam had told Matty we were with Camp Solo, he’d googled it and found an email address, then got in touch to try and track me down.
After I’d definitely double and triple checked that this wasn’t someone taking the piss, I was chuffed! He said he’d been gutted he lost me, he was so happy he’d found me. I was living in a fairy tale for the digital age! Think of the great story I could post on social media on our anniversary!
…Except that pretty quickly, some cracks started to show. Matty liked to #eatcleantraindirty, and when he wasn’t doing that he liked to take lots of MDMA. He was also nearly 6 years younger than me, and seemed like a sweet guy with whom I had nothing in common. Still, I persisted in trying to organise a meet up, because think of the story! Meanwhile, he was gathering a red flag list of his own: She’s really into the theatre and reading, she’s a vegan, she didn’t think my suggestion of driving round to her house was an appropriate first date..So three weeks later, Matty ghosted.
There isn’t really a moral to this tale, except that maybe sometimes stories are better in our heads. And that Drunk Penny has questionable choice.