As I sit here finishing the literal mountain of laundry I have left over from Movement and Spring Awakening Music Festival, it finally hit me. I AM GOING TO ELECTRIC FOREST! I am not even sorry for shouting! Unfortunately, that work/life balance has become more difficult when you are working and traveling to fests a few times a month. (Yeah, I know, sounds tough doesn’t it?). I mentioned to a friend recently that the more festivals I have attended in recent memory, the less I tend to get excited for them. The idea of quality over quantity has been something on my mind since Ultra in March.
“I have never seen a group of people more excited for a festival, than those for Forest,” my self-appointed Bassicorn (Bass-Unicorn) Danielle said to me on the longest ride home from Chicago I think I have ever suffered through. She had been trying to get me to “YOLO” and go for a few months, and to be honest I was more concerned with making it through Movement’s concrete jungle alive. Sometimes something so serendipitous happens to make the stars align in the universe, and make an experience materialize literally out of thin air. This seems to be my personal Forest. I am still in shock that I am actually covering the one festival I have always wanted to attend.
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“So how do I do this?” I asked myself feeling slightly overwhelmed planning a festival in a week that most plan for six-plus months in advance. Unfortunately, my business comes first, and I was unable to leave until Friday for weekend two. I wrestled with the options. Driving 5 to 6 hours? Check. Do I rent a tent? Do I have any friends with tents I could borrow since I’m not much of a camper? Do I reach out to others going and ask them to help? How am I going to set a tent up in the dark when I don’t even know how to do so during the day? WiIl i even know where to find people? Will there be any cell phone service?
Unlike the time I attempted to attend Bonnaroo, I had nothing but AMAZING reactions from literally EVERY PERSON in the Electric Forest Groups. Instead of saying “If you aren’t going to camp, don’t even bother coming,” each and every person was more than willing to offer their suggestions, advice, and love. I settled on saving 6 hours of camp set up and tear down time to maximize the experience, especially since I really only have two full days in the Forest. Not only were people willing to open their tents for me, but a super nice local helped me find a hotel that was close to the venue. (I’m still in shock they had rooms available!) I’m reasonably self-reliant, so relying on others generosity was daunting to me, but I will NEVER forget the impressive energy from these strangers who will soon become friends. I even have a drink date for my arrival Friday to thank the lovely lady who went out of her way to help me plan my accommodations and trip. (Thank you Kayleigh!) This is first and foremost why I fest. Meeting new people. I have been blessed to meet people from all over the country and the world, and some of them have become my best friends. What is better than connecting with those who share similar passions as you?
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Now with accommodations handled, car prepped and ready, laundry clean and ready to repack… now I just had the daunting task of driving 6 hours on my own. Truth be told, I am not the best driver. In fact, most friends refuse to ride with me. I have done a long car trip on my own, but driving and staying alone sounded like the most abysmal of circumstances for my first Electric Forest. Then, a third miracle happened. My festy-besty Tim called me out of the blue. I had not spoken much to him since his wedding at EDC. Within a period of five minutes, flights were booked into Indianapolis, a car was rented, and a travel buddy materialized out of thin air. I’m not sure if it was because this has been such an easy process from the beginning (I have ONLY been planning for one week, and VERY late in the game at that) but I found myself moved to tears on the phone with him. There were so many moving parts to accomplish, and here I am, normally the type A planner for my group, and a Forest materialized within a WEEK. It has been a while since I believed in “the universe providing,” and I have no explanation other than the universe works in mysterious ways.
Apparently, sometimes you don’t plan Forest, Forest plans you. It is completely acceptable to me. I can’t wait to get lost in the Forest with all of you! Purchase your last minute tickets below! Let the universe win!