/ #Festival #Firespinning 

Southern Lights - Full-Fat Edition


Now that I actually have time to post a real entry about SL, here goes.

To begin with, I wasn’t going to go to Southern Lights as I was quite simply too poor to afford a ticket. Thankfully, the gorgeous Safire stepped in and offered me one of hers in exchange for hugs on demand. A fair trade. The festival kicked off on Friday the 11th, but I was booked that day to celebrate a friend finishing exams.

The Southern Lights camp
Friday evening went swimmingly, with a bunch of people back at hers having an awesome time. We did sort of lose track of time and before I knew it, it was light again and I had to leave to get home, pick up my stuff and run. This I did. Eventually I made it on the train, having run for it with a fairly weighty backpack containing mainly circus toys, paraffin and food. When I eventually made it to Southern Lights, the party was in full swing and I wearily stumbled up the hillside to a vacant spot on the ground to pitch my tent. No tent-pitching was done for about 20 minutes as I simply collapsed on the grass and lay there, unable to move for exhaustion.
![](https://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=40212351707&ref=ts "Spinning @") were around as well, which was good. The events of the following few days are too numerous to list in prose so I will make it easy - I had my arms painted in different patterns with SPF 30 theatre paints, meaning I now sport a patterned tan! - Took some amazing sunset poi photos with the help of Skins’ camera and flash gear - We had countless workshops taught by Thomas, G, Loooop and entire hours spent experimenting with things and just letting information sink in - Spent a good chunk of time hanging out on Jan’s porch, exchanging massages with a load of people which was both fun and educational. - Had a wine & cheese party while the pub quiz was happening with real Brie, Gruyère and all manner of other cheeses that had miraculously not grown legs and escaped in the heat. - Drew shapes in the dark with some LED finger rings - Ingested unhealthy amounts of sausage rolls, jaffa cakes and houmous. - Cleaned up my stalls immensely - Re-engineered my poi for extra length after playing with Thomas’ set
Ostensibly NOT packing
Eventually, things wound down and I found myself awake on Monday morning at God knows what time, *convinced* that everyone had nearly finished packing. So I feverishly stuffed all my belongings into my backpack and poked my head outside to find that nobody was up except the sun, the birds and the ever-present sheep. Cursing my misfortune, I unrolled my sleeping bag and passed out. 3 hours later, people *were* up and between packing, poi-ing and drinking with relish, gratitude and tears of joy in my eyes the steaming hot cocoa that Jan had cooked up, I managed to get everything squared away and was faced with a dilemma: whether to take the minibus to the train station and get the train to London or whether to get a lift to the station from Jan. In the end, we all decided it would be much more fun for me to lie across her back seat with 3 people supporting me all the way to London. All in all, an EXCELLENT festival and I am going again next year!
How I spent Monday afternoon. With 100% more door.


Itinerant photographer, firespinner, poly feminist, he/him.