Today instead of posting another record of my Glastonbury visits (1991 next) I thought I would write a little bit about why Glastonbury means so much to me. I am not eloquent with words, I am more of a visual person, so I will write a bit and illustrate it with some of my many photos.
When I first visited, in November 1988, I felt as if I had come home in a way, as if I had found somewhere I had always been looking for. For a start the place was full of unicorns, and I started collecting unicorns in 1980, in my last year at college. Anywhere with so many unicorns had to be special! But there was... just something. Something in the atmosphere and feel of the place. My Pagan awakening happened in the year after my first visit, and I later found out about what the Druids call Spirit of Place. To me Glastonbury has a very strong spirit of place, and I felt it on that first visit. It was the Tor, I could not take my eyes off it. We climbed it in the afternoon and it was a slightly misty autumn day with the smell of woodsmoke in the air.. it was Bonfire night.. and even now I always try to visit around that time of year to feel that again. The friend I stayed with lived in Somerton, so we drove home along the Butleigh Road, and I had to keep looking back at the Tor until it was no longer in view. When I went home, I felt for the first time the feeling I now called "Glastified".
I had no idea that it would keep calling me back but it did... and nearly 23 years after that first visit, it still does, 4-5 times a year. Thankfully as it is only 105 miles from my home in Oxford and you can get there easily by train and bus, I can pop down on a whim or with friends.
But as I went back again and again I realised.. I was among kindred spirits too. I have always been a bit of a "hippy" to coin a well loved term, in the way I look and dress with with my views. There were other hippies there! And as my Pagan spirituality grew and developed I realised.. Pagans gather there too. I don't feel out of place in my long flowing skirts and with my long hair flowing down my back.. instead I blend in!
Me on the Tor in 1994
I have had so many chance encounters with wonderful people there over the years too, people I have got talking to on the bus going down, in cafes, on the Tor, in the Chalice Well gardens, staying at Little St. Michaels. I have been told that I am old soul, that I have been around for a long time. That I have a rainbow aura. I have guided people going there for the first time, and met a wonderful lady with silver hair with long silver glittery strands in it. Encountered Goddesses and Green men. Just vibrant and wonderful people on their own quests too who feel the same love for this magical corner of this green and pleasant land.