Four Seasons In One Day

The delights of the unpredictable British weather.

This shot was taken on the first day of a 2 day at a music festival where the weather was apparently going to be horrendous for both days. Most people were sensible and turned up prepare for the worse which, on the first day, never arrived. The sun was splitting the skies and it was t-shirt and shorts weather all day other than one small period where the festival had to be halted for fear of a lightening strike on the stage area.

Everything was cleared from on stage and no performances were allowed until the threat passed. The crowd took it well and many had decided to put on their rain ponchos in preparation whilst others did not bother and took their chances.

Fortunately the storm passed with only a few flashes of lightening and some very loud thunder – but no rain.  It seems that Crowded House had it correct all those years ago with their song ‘Four seasons in one day’

Taken in Linlithgow, Scotland, during the Party at The Palace, August 2019

Unacceptable Harassement

An article on the BBC News website regarding female performers at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival being the victims of sexual harassment brought to mind an incident I witnessed at the start of this years Festival.

Whilst waiting to meet a friend for lunch I spent some time watching the street performers on the Royal Mile and taking some photographs of things that interested me. As I walked I noticed the girl in the photograph and made enquiries with one of her colleagues regarding the show they were performing at the Festival.

As I watched the girl, bearing in mind this is an actor, a small group of males came over having reading her sign and politely asked “well what do you want ?” to which the actor quickly shouted “Some fucking respect”. Needless to say the youths made off rather quickly after that without taking a flyer for the show.

As I reflected on what I had just witnessed my initial thoughts were about how the actor was correct in her response though, as the day passed I thought about it some more.

Yes, it was shouted in the context of an actress trying to sell tickets to a show about female directed sexual harassment by men but it also struck me that there had been an opportunity lost for a dialogue with the men about the show and the issues it was highlighting.

At the end of the day, the men were not being rude and appeared to be genuinely asking a question about a show that, up to that point, they knew nothing about having simply seen an actor standing with a sign above her head.

Respect works both ways, the actor deserves respect but the men also deserved respect and certainly didi not deserve to be shouted and sworn at in the street regardless of the fact it was the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Potential ticket sales were lost, the men still know nothing about the show and the chance to enter into conversation was lost by the actor and her friends.

Info: The show was called Coming Home With Me by Brighton based theatre group Girl Code and is billed as ‘a night exploring the grimy underbelly of a girls night out’. Using completely verbatim material from 15 female-identifying students aged between 18-23, two girls who run an initiative called Consent In Clubs , a member of a prominent anti-harassment charity and a Brighton Bouncer.

Girl Code do point out that  it is not all men who engage in inappropriate, and often criminal, behaviour in clubs though their research highlights that every female they spoke with during research has had to deal with this in some form or another on nights out.

It’s also important to highlight that this kind of unwanted harassment also happens, possibly to a lesser extent, to men perpetrated by females. It is not an exclusive one way street though it is important that people realise the behaviour is wrong and completely unacceptable regardless of who the perpetrator is.

Don’t Over Indulge

The temptation to forget all your inhibitions at an outdoor music festival is all too easy a trap to fall into. The important things to remember are to stay hydrated, not to drink too much alcohol and to let your friends know if you are not feeling too well at any point.

This is before you even think about sunscreen if its a hot day, keeping warm and dry if it is wet and eating enough throughout the day and all the other things that go together with keeping yourself safe and well in a big crowd.

At the 2019 Party At The Palace in Linlithgow, Scotland there were not too many people who had over-indulged during the weekend and the man in this photograph was generally the exception to the rule. Shortly before this was taken he was bent double with what he had taken in during the day making a sudden reappearance next to the fence where he was standing.

Of course you should go and enjoy yourself, but its always worth remembering that you probably paid a lot of money for the ticket to see your favourite bands and there is nothing worse than not remembering a thing about it when you wake up the next morning feeling very sorry for yourself for having overdone it the day before.