Day two post festival exhaustion. Volunteering at a festival is a cool thing. I like festivals and enjoy the culture of helping hands they tend to have. If I can be a part of helping them operate I like to be. I’ve never been a worker during the night shift of a festival before and it was an illuminating experience and a lot harder of one than I had originally thought even while I was doing it.
My brain has pretty much wrapped around Sunday as a hard day after a long hot but awesome day saturday and uneventful shift and then longer partying during the night to a silent disco (people tuning into one of two DJs on Bluetooth headphones).
Despite sleeping most of Sunday I did get up in the morning to see some friends on stage and do some poi, but I was distracted by a gentleman juggling and otherwise rocking between three and eight hoops at times. I wandered over and asked if I could practice juggling his hoops and he said yes. I was excited to do so and that’s how I practiced hoop juggling with Bags (international hooper). :3
After more napping I saw some girl absolutely freaking out at her boyfriend and realized that they had been camped by me and been having issues all day. By issues I mean this girl was just freaking out about how he needed to go get her food and she hadn’t eaten all day.
I was confused at the time and figured she was just a complete jackass. I remain feeling really rotten about myself for sleeping rather than trying to intervene because I feel like I could have possibly helped this person sooner. At the time I was just mentally tsktsking her for not taking care of herself on her own.
While my coordinator was explaining what my job would be that night the same girl came up highly agitated saying we needed to find her boyfriend.
This ended up being really sad. Turns out this girl has a legitimate issue in that she isn’t from here and her boyfriend brought her late last night, but she didn’t know how to deal with it appropriately. She doesn’t have any of the right wristbands and she’s hungry and she hadn’t eaten or drank anything because she can’t get into the festival so she’s just been freaking out in the volunteer camping all day and she has now come to try to find her boyfriend (who possibly has reason to want to be away from her but by goodness that’s not the right way to break up with someone).
She was so agitated that the security guards were perking up. And so I hugged her and she just started crying. We took her to the medical tent and my coordinator sat with her while I looked after information booth.
Two team members had been escorted out of the festival, so after long days, various volunteers came up and checked in before leaving their posts which is a cool volunteer thing to do. Both the people running the ambassador’s were awesome. Sean ran around all night doing various things as if he actually were in three places at once.
I am pretty sure sunday night was tame for a festival but it started crazy and got slightly more crazy. The agitated girl got a camping pass but not a festival pass and ended up getting her second warning on not yelling at the people trying to help her from my impossibly cool security guard named Luna. Dude was beyond mellow. Weirdly mellow. They ended up leaving.
Luna ended up getting hit by a jumper who had tried to walk through our gate and ran back into the festival and so she chased him and he hit her and went over another fence to escape. Most of the night seemed to be a bit of a man hunt for that guy because Luna is awesome and seems much beloved.
I ended up burning out twenty minutes before my shift ended and going to bed after sour banter for the past hour or so with drunk people. And seeing a large guy get motorboated by a dudebro for daring to take his shirt off.
I keep thinking I have reached the limit for how badly I want to jump on someone and do serious physical harm to them but dudebro holds the new record. All I could shout was ‘you didn’t get consent for that!’ and throw my arms up in the air.
Which all rounds me towards my point. I think I was more affected by the girl with the problems and the mellow boyfriend than I let myself think I was.
I am a person that spends a considerable amount of energy avoiding yelling at people and acting hysterical. I learned how to do this by learning what things make me hysterical: lack of food sleep and water are big. There were water taps on the camp ground side of the festival. A girl could have gotten herself water. But she was too busy trying to feel taken care of by her boyfriend by having him go get it. She could have solved her own problems by buying her ticket or not coming if she knew she had no money.
Love languages and self care.
Having a healthy understanding of self care will allow you to be more authentic in how you connect with someone if one of the languages by which you perceive love is service.
But really it just helps you move though the world more authentically.
Self care is what festivals taught me. If only because the circle has come whole. And I have been the hysterical girl freaking out before.