It was hot. It was humid. It was fantastic.
Let’s just say I was there from start of day until close of business and I do not do festivals/large gatherings of people well at all. I’m the hermitty type most drawn to Michael Leunig’s favoured “…Festival of Clouds/the festival that doesn’t pull the crowds”, so for me to put in eight solid hours at a festival says something about the event.
We spent the day outside under the trees, as writer after writer appeared before us on the Kids’ Courtyard Stage (I presented there last year, at midday, in similar, soupy conditions, and let me tell you it is much more relaxing lying back on cushions on the grass, in the shade).
We saw Richard Newsome (laid back, funny, and entertaining), Kirsty Murray (thought-provoking, scientific, and entertaining), Kate De Goldi (reflective, charming, and entertaining), James Roy (hilarious, hilarious, and entertaining), Sally Murphy (poignant, verserrific and, yeah, you get the idea; I’m not going to repeat it any more), Dianne Wolfer (informative, intelligent …), and finally, Julia Lawrinson in a double-act with repeat offender Richard Newsome to talk about the writing and publishing life (funny, eye-opening and, yes, you know the drill).
It was in a word – blissful. Grass, trees, cushions, writers, books, kids. During the fifteen-minute breaks between sessions we rushed out to the bookstore and the signing table and the cafe and the drink fountain, squeezing these extra bits in as quickly as possible so we could get back to the heady business of lying on our backs under the trees.
These photos give you a sampling of what we saw, but of all of the pictures I took today, my very favourite is this one:
Already looking forward to next year and another slow, soupy (and entertaining!) day beneath the leaves.