The Six Stages Of A Festival Romance

A walk through of the quickly escalating festival romance.  

JOSEPHINE RYAN MURPHY

A festival romance is a wonderful, unique and kind of gross thing. There really isn’t anything quite like it. The rules are different, everything moves at a different rate and once the festival is over, it remains there as a fond and amusing memory but nothing more.  

The Initial Meeting

Day one, you’ve rocked up to the campsite all bright eyed and bushy tailed. The full impact of being at a festival is yet to ruin you. You have your first few drinks sitting in the sun outside your tent meeting your festival neighbours when you catch eyes. You introduce yourself and chat, all the while weighing each other up as a potential good time.

Substances Kick In

As the night progresses and your mind vibrates through a blur of lights and music, all seen through those suspiciously brighter eyes, you spot each other. The flirting is all of a sudden a lot more intense. You’re not actually sure if anything either of you are saying makes any sense or even if you’re talking about the same thing, but while the verbal communication may not be quite there, the physical is and beside, the music’s too loud to hear each other anyway. And the sensation of touching right now is definitely more fun than hearing.

Chilling At Tents

You find some bullshit excuse, which you both know is definitely bullshit to head back to the tents. Tripping over tent wires and stumbling like Godzilla onto and into everyone else’s tents, you eventually make it back. You then have to deal with the initial awkwardness of the tent itself. Do you just climb in, or? It’s not like being invited back to someone’s place where you can actually sit on a sofa or something and have a drink rather than literally crawling hands and knees straight into their bed.

The Awkward Tent Sex

Tents generally are not that big and the walls are just pieces of material that are not at all soundproof and also they make shit tonnes of noise whenever you move in any way at all. Due to the lack of space around you, you both have to remain pretty much stationary bar the obvious bits, not to mention neither of you can remember the last time you showered. You basically just lie flopped, one of you on top of the other jolting back and forth rubbing your dirty sweaty parts on each other.

The Exit

Even if you don’t actually want to leave, you’ll need to pee or something and it’s not like just leaving the room to use the toilet and then getting back into bed. The equivalent of climbing out of that tent is leaving someone’s house and walking onto a street full of people you know — and if you leave the house is it cool to climb back in? So after an eternity of lying, eyes wide open staring at the spinning roof of the suffocatingly hot tent contemplating, you’ll eventually pull yourself through the tent door, the air hitting your face making it feel like a rebirth of some kind. And since you feel awkward about climbing back in, if they’re asleep when you crawl out, they’re gonna just assume you ditched. And then of course, you realise you’ve left all your shit in there.

The ending

You’re living in very close quarters, it’s almost like living together for those few days. You’ve got two options really, commit and tent-move-in together or avoid each other entirely. And so what started as a potentially nice thing has now eroded into awkward waves and nods of the head. It was fun while it lasted though.

To fill your summer with moments like these, come join Stoke on one of our festivals this season!

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