The traditional long post-UP post!

Another Unorthodox Paradox in the bag, and the general consensus seems to be that it was – as they say – a MASSIVE DOSS. We think it might have been the best yet in many ways, and let’s face it, it had stiff competition from previous UPs (though we say so ourselves).

All the usual thank yous apply of course – to everyone who helped us in any capacity, who keep the whole thing sounding and looking spectacular and who all work with a smile in occasionally taxing circumstances – the wonderful Sophie & Sam from ‘Mother May I’ for their beautiful positivity and equally beautiful food – the astonishing artists across both stages (oh my god, how good?) – site owner Lynnie (and definitely-not-a-lesbian cohabitee Sue) for letting us invade their space and generally loving the madness – and should go without saying a massive BIG UP to all you lot who bought a ticket (in fact, this year, ALL THE TICKETS) and without whom, ya know, none of it would happen.

Extra-special thank you to Catweazle (pictured), who aside from being the lampy with the mostest, also helps out in numerous other ways before, during and after the event to generally keep the wheels on our demented escapade and stop us from just going FUCK IT.

Extra-extra-special thank you to our amazing family who are truly at the core of the whole thing and every year we do it bring the energy and the laughter and hold us up in ways they can’t even begin to imagine.

You may have noticed that it is several days since we gently ushered you all offsite, and it has taken me this long to get this lengthy missive together. The reason being that it is only today that we finished packing the site down, although we still haven’t actually finished working, we have yet to get the stage back, and then we have the job of unpacking everything at this end and trying to somehow Tetris it all back into our currently-a-bombsite home. So, 12 long days of solid work (and several months previous bringing it all together) for 3 days of preposterous fun. Libby has one of those Fitbit things, which last Thursday informed her that she had walked 26,000 steps (that’s thirteen miles), and I have no reason to think I hadn’t done much the same. The days previously that week had all been a ‘paultry’ 18 or 19,000, and each day of the last 12 much the same. To say we are knackered is somewhat of an understatement. Every year people say “You’ve GOT to do it again next year”, and every year we say “We’re NEVER doing it again” – well, all that above, and the associated stress, and the fact that it means we don’t ever really get a summer – those are just some of the reasons why we say that.

This year we have an added complication, in as much as just before the event we were told by the housing association that own the place that we live in, that we could no longer park our mobile stage in the (massive) car park next to our house. This is a long story, so I won’t go into detail, but suffice it to say that this is a classic ‘computer says no’ decision prompted by a completely unneccesary complaint from a dickhead neighbour, and so it is quite possible that we may have to sell our beloved ‘Ming’. We are investigating options and ways that we might avoid this, but it is – to put it mildly – complicated. We’re open to hearing any bright ideas, if you have any.

Aside from that, general feedback from pretty much everyone we spoke to during the event was that the site itself was great and just the right size for us, and so maybe – just maybe – we’ll think about doing it all again next year…but that’s a decision for another time. For now, we have some annoying and difficult manouevres to make, and a lot of sleep (and not walking) to catch up on.

But rest assured, for those 3 glorious days, we were unreservedly revelling in the sheer joy of it all as much as anyone, we BLOODY LOVE IT 🙂 Thank you all for giving us that, it’s something that can’t be measured, and that we never – ever – take for granted.

Neil & Libby xxx