This was to be our base. The safe haven we would return to to drink wine and cups of tea, play uno, eat chips with salsa and regroup. And laugh. Boy did we have some great laughs!
swam lots in freezing, scintillating creeks (the kids jumped, played, ran, explored, hunted for stonefish (!) - us adults mainly plunged in, making lots of cold water noises and then stood in the sun warming up!
Watched some great performances of knitting, Shakespeare, cabaret and magical illusion, circus acts and aerial extravaganzas. One show was based on 'dead rock stars' and featured trapeze Marilyn Monroes and Amy Winehouses, as well as Jeff Buckley as an angel on the silks.
Danced our little tooshes off! A-Ruth-a and I started a funk dance party outside the street art tent, we all boogied like nobodies business in Vic's Disco, we danced barefoot on the grass to the flamenco and groove of Tijuana Cartel and of course jumped around (with Flex on my back!!) to Gotye's set.
Played a set. Yes, we performed on the coooooolest stage - a little caravan converted to an open mic venue! Flex did a harmonica solo and we played guitar, mandolin, uke, spoons and kazoo. "Rock Me Mama Like A Wagonwheel" was a bona fide smash hit!
Ate delicious food. Wether it was pancakes with orange juice made by the legendary Captain Pancake in his red speedos, or the almost painfully delicious Yemen style wraps, we ate well. And drank yummy Lemoncello cocktails to boot! And who can forget fresh mango sorbet, gozleme, wood fired pizza and chips on a stick!!!
Listened to great music. Of course that's the point yeah? But actually this year it was almost more of a backdrop than the focus of the festival. But we did see our friends the Rescue Ships, and Richie Cuthbert singing 'Home Among the Gumtrees' in the Chai Temple, as well as a rocking jug band in the Tantric Turtle Cafe, the Crooked Fiddle band and a cool girl group singing harmonies.
Did workshops. Between us all we did Laughter Yoga, Empowered our Relationships, Be the Change, Solar Power, Debunking Economics as a Science, Deep ecology, Sound Healing and African dance. This is the kind of school I like!!! The kids also did lots of great stuff including circus skills, giant bubble creating and mask making.
Met cool people. Yes, you always bump into friends at this festival as it is so close to home, but you also always meet great people. From the lady selling the bubble makers, to the people camping nearby, it really is a festival of friends and friends to be! Like minded souls congregating for the purpose of celebration and community.
And really, that's why we love it. Going to Peats Ridge and dancing in the new year is an opportunity to reconnect. With the earth (which can't be denied - everywhere you look are sandstone mountains, clear waters, green trees and sparkling stars), with our friends and families (lots of time together playing and no screens), with our kindred spirits (by the end everyone is wearing anklets with bells or feathers in their hair and smiles on their faces) and maybe most importantly, with ourselves. We don't drive. We walk barefoot a lot. We hug each other. We play.
No new years resolutions - just new adventures for this little happy camper!