Road Home

God it’s good to be home. I’m running a bath because outside of the rainstorm no water has touched my skin since Wednesday night. The stench hasn’t deterred Pickle, who is being her usual affectionate self and welcoming me back from the woods. Cats really do make a home. But I’m looking forward to a good soak and a scrub.

We finally got our tents packed up at 3pm. I managed to persuade security to let me drive my car to the campsite, so we didn’t have to lug all the bags across the fields – a mercy. We were all knackered. The night before had been full of dancing, warmth and music after the rain stopped at 7. We had eventually watched the dawn, bleary and partied out, sitting round a campfire. The sight dragged me to my sleeping bag. Not a moment too soon, as one thoroughly fucked man apparently broke out a vape full of DMT and passed it round as soon as I was gone. He had been evangelizing about it earlier and I’d told him he shouldn’t mess with it. He probably waited until I was gone deliberately and I’m glad he did.

A few hours of fitful sleep, a few hours of staggering around and making conversation, but it was inevitable I was going to have to drive to London no matter how hard I procrastinated.


The best way to do something difficult is to break it up into small parts. I found a good pub on the way home via the internet and we stopped for lunch. The Coach and Horses in Brixworth. Hot food and a flushing loo. The heights of luxury. The festival “long drops” stank to holy hell and by the last morning some of them were unusable. The long drop just … wasn’t long enough. It all goes into a biffa bin. Thousands of people filling biffa bins with effluent. I’ll never look at them in the same way again. If anyone tries to sell you a cheap biffa bin in September, think twice.

Brixworth has an ancient heritage trail. It’s a tiny village in Northamptonshire but there are Roman ruins and a still functioning Saxon church. There’s very little to do, so a committee of retired people have stuck a load of blue plaques on buildings. “There used to be a butcher here selling tasty lard sausages. Now everybody goes to Tesco.” “A doctor in this house cured people of diptheria one time. Now it’s owned by an accountant with no friends.” “This was a poor house with 10 people in it. Now it’s flats.” That sort of thing. A little more formal.

We went into the church. I like that they leave country churches unlocked so frequently, despite the many signs around the village warning that “thieves operate in this area.” I paid for a postcard – good to leave a donation of some sort when the church is open just to say thanks. I’d normally light a candle for mum, but the place wasn’t high church. No candles.


After that, though, I could wait any longer. I was out of pretexts to delay the inevitable drive. We jumped in the jag and surprisingly made it home intact and in short order.

Now the bath is run, I’ve got some food on the go, and I’m looking forward to a few days of relative normality. We shall see.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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