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The Tibetan Ukranian Mountain Troupe.
Third Tibetan Book of The Road;
July 1982 -pt1.
Glastonbury to Fennit
( via Marcham ).
An early start, on the road before the midday heat. Four busses, - The Beast, The Ting , Horace and Tom - Waggys truck and trailer and the grey car - fast travelling , a smooth ride on a wave of music.
We stop for lunch at Silbury Hill- tales of past adventures there , apple trees and spiral hills.
On to the Marcham lay bye , reverse in and relax . Nice to find Pat the Smith and Joanne there.
stayed there all day watching the corn grow , the Ting off with
half the crew on business, disturbed by ripples on the net from
the convoy passing through. Synched with two Peace Camp women who
gave us the first news .
theatre of violence hits reality head on. a transit load of police haring
up the road skids on a patch of diesel and tries to crack a hole in
the wall the hard way . Close at hand is the valiant K9
and Pride of the Fleet who rescue them
, administer first aid and radio for help, making a swift exit when
all is under control after providing the police with first aid and the
spare blankets. Meanwhile the May Hill mob
have been lifted, chaos reigns and that's all we know so far, Rumours
fly wild for days . None of the above made it to the media, who printed
the usual berserk stuff , followed up by the usual 'squalid homestead'
stuff - ho hum . At least we got front page Sun and a Franklin cartoon
- what price fame ?
we read this , pulled up ready to roll, a lone motorcycle cop courageously
tackles us , he doesn't want papers, he just wants our numbers so he can
radio ahead so we don't get stopped ! we humour him , everyone happy .
Arrive about ten , customary gate hassles, pyramid of organisers , this is the third festival here but the first to make it on the circuit , you're supposed to pay , but we're providing a service and in we go m up to the top corner , the fields fulla thistles and kind of lumpy but a very pretty place and loads of butterflies , herbs , nice .
Good collection of people , the first Glastonbury convoy - the Kids bus , Chris . Roger turns up back with floating anarchy , Sue and Sid's bus , woody Steve stagger , cocktail Chas , swinging Sid ! and a token tipi encampment . Sony and Roger surprised and pleased me .
Busy day , brief rest and put the marquee up , learning the ropes . everythings s in colour and the sun breaks through and its really hot. The Ting off uptown for supplies and returns full of food . Feasting and celebration , everything finally gets a place , even the bender goes up , right on moon rise
The main day of the festival , lots of bikers turn up but no real heavies, not as many people as should have come , a quietish festival but enjoyable.
Huge marquee down the bottom with bar and stage sends out good music at tremendous volume , the disco sounds are excellent -right out of the distant past.
The peace camp teams up with Vinny and do food /drink , we sell dreamballs and candles and wait for their music to get turned off so we can hear ourselves play .
Its really hot again .
Harry T turns up again and gets The Stencils together again and also some fire breathing . The psychedelic tea is on the go , The Beast fills up with starry eyed young bikers in torn leather and tattoos.
Manage to get a gig together on Saturday night , small but appreciative audience.
Yinned out today- stayed around The camp, made food , drew , read, ( The Masks of The Illuminatii - excellent ! ) party on down the hill. Strange wind all day .
Glenda's birthday, another hot day , cleared up and loaded most of the gear , goodbyes said , contact addresses exchanged , we separate for a little while now, Dave and Wendy and Steve return to Eaton by The Mosquitoes , leaving the kids bus here from lack of fuel . Sid stuck thru lack of brakes , The peace camp pulling out early tomorrow , maybe off to pick apples.
We have a party feast- all sorts of goodies eaten and smoked , great !
out around the fire later but it begins to rain , forewarned -the bender was already down .
Fennit to Rougham, ( via Ambridge )
Late start for a change , after lunch and right in synch with Wu and Chris returning . Goodbyes to stranded Sid and on The road again . Drive to The coach park in Cambridge . Music and costumes, we go a busking , thru The park entertaining aliens and so to the market place for a two act show, us and a group of Dutch buskers . Hit them with The rope through The head ( Tibetan rope trick ) and busy bee, good-ish crowd , chaos and music makes them smile . Watch the Dutch act then separate for more busking , shopping and rendezvous chez Tibet , discover Libby dog has been visiting the race track next door. The man gave her a bath and a beautiful soft leather collar . She remembers -her eyes were soft and her paws dancing .
Fast exit before the races begin, weve earned our bus fares and masses of fruit and veg . Good drive to Rougham ( Green Deserts ) yard, but Jay loses a rear hatch door backing and turning in 1/12 bus lengths .
The place is beautiful -buried in wild plants ( lotsa nettles, ouch ) old ruin being renovated , natty showmanz trailer. Redhot sunset , flaming sky , its been a lovely day ....( sunset graphic )
Rest day . Will and Kath lurch off to London , Waggys go forth on several attempted trailer rescue missions , finally trip to London which proves futile , back late and tired. Graham , Glenda , Wu and Chris call over at Stour Valley site. The festival rumour service has set the gremlins on us and apparently we are to be feared and dreaded and probably not paid.
Think well go and sit on the fence.
Lots of visitors drop by, liaison with locals and festival disorganisers, , clean out kitchen, wash clothes, sunbathe , smoke. Kids begin rehearsing a show, they catch on fast .
Weve been offered 150 for Stour valley, - seems someone likes us after all.
Weather today overcast and windy, blue sky , sun patches- been a strange uncomfortable vibe about yesterday ,edgy like someone's watching us with unfriendly intent , thought it was just me until Jay mentioned it.
Kids party over at the Green Desert this afternoon for young Kali of Bejazzles , Jay ,Ricky, Jackie and me go over with our gang, good time though quiet and apparently it was a no kidz zone until very recently .
Check out festival field , full of strong animals and trees - a good sign, equipped with telegraph wires. Glen over later -does some recording in The Konister with Jay . Home to the rabbit stew movie- the game keeper brought us some rabbits this morning . The Waggys built a cooking fire and did a HUGE pot of stew with blackberry and apple pie after , wild fruit high energy food and eaten under a sky full of flying stars , its a beautiful night .
Sid arrived just in time , brakes fixed by blanking one off, flat fenlands , you can get away with it , made it ok. News of the kids bus, gone up to EBM, seems to have cooled down there a bit , will The convoy go to Stour Valley?
Q uiet relaxed gentle day, bake bread and tarts which go to Green Deserts with the mini full of people to watch their slide show , we stay and talk of plans, ideas and connections . Weather dull- lots of rain, no visitors, Waggys off on another trailer rescue attempt.
The kitchen floor outback of The Beast is getting really soggy wet, its time we moved, but all of The clothes are still damp from today's massive laundry , picked up Will in town also , returned safely from the smoke.
Slow wind-up to leave , final suggestion Waggys rescue mission Sid and Jim to change the tyre then after a site meeting the truck loads up to fetch it , we pack ready to synchronise departure , excitement grows , energy rises , music and sunshine ,this is a beautiful place to rest, but now we got to move.
scampering in the long grass , with tangled briars and elderflower ,
showman's trailer buried in green .
Telepathy in fine form , we lined up ready just as Waggys got to the top of the track , The Beast , The Ting , Albion Truck ( which I drive its a lovely motor , real sweet engine ) Waggys and Horace at the back with the two cars.
Danger as a way of life. Crisis Stations .
Its dark soon after we leave , on the edge of twilight we encounter our difficulty, the left back tyres on the Beast blow out and begin to burn .
Pullover in lay-by , lucky we're on a dual carriageway and decide to stay together till they're fixed , gather tools and equipment , seek out spare wheels , Jay underneath jacking it up , Glen bending Sid's wheel brace on the wheelnuts.
Its all right, we'll straighten it up for you .
Cop turns up , we reassure him we come in peace and aren't going to stay , he sits at the back flashing pretty blue lights , then acts bored , presents us with some witches hats and drives away ,( having surreptitiously taken our numbers, we saw ya ! )
A UFO hangs in the east sky slowly cruising off anticlockwise , stops and flashes when we invite them to the show.
Another roadside attraction .
Rolls again, but not for long, a few miles further another blow-out and no spares left.
Chaos , finally we go on ahead , Graham tries to get The Beast there on three wheels but stopped and catches us up on site, we have to launch a rescue mission , using The Tings wheels . Jack it up, take them off, load up and Glen and Jay off to do it , we sit and wait.
And wait .
And Will comes up with a really far out and cosmic stew with chapatis , hot food, hot knives, phantom diesel engines on the skyline,
standing listening in the rain ,
theyre taking a long time ,
hope they're all right ,
maybe we should go out in the mini ,
engine noise ,
headlights, rocking over the field towards us ,
they're back. !
Beautiful sunny morning , with gusty squalls of fine rain, site crew on the go as we breakfast and discuss tactics, Initial contact with natives reasonable and peaceful , final details of settlement up in the air though. We wait and continue connecting, voided out day and eventually move the beast to the valley floor where its flat, we can unload the kitchen and cook dinner . Rikki bakes bread, all tired at night , quiet.
for generator brushes, Glenda goes hunting , move the Ting down first, all
the busses down here now, Waggys truck joins us, we got a nice camp now
. Waggys set up the caravan and begin to make peace with the disorganisers.
Bender workshop out the back later, dinner from Horace. A beautiful horse drawn rig arrives, three really lovely horses and a neat flat cart Barrel top. The dome was completed , we discuss the allocation of flat space , do we fit in the plan?
Kate and Bejazzles arrive, its a groovy night , rapping on the mysteries of the universe , getting rained on around the fire.
strange dreams , it was really there and surprised to wake in the bender
again and be really here , it felt the same , rare and beautiful feeling
It was green- a track with a wooden fance on the right , flowers , sunshine , busses pulled in , friends , good high energy.
Wake up properly and realise Tony had arrived.
PM the fair was declared
officially open by the Raising Of The Glove
a custom dating back to 1221, a sign that the Free
Trade Zone was officially established . Anarkia rules.
The convoy arrived Wednesday afternoon as scheduled , peaceful
coexistence was established quickly. The marquee goes up ready for
Josies party yesterday . The field fills up quickly , full of coloured
light and music.
Suddenly its a festival !!!!
sunny morning ( once through the hangover vibe ) up and about , glad
to be on a normal reality phase .
Another busy day , slow start , everyone tired and drained at first, but one more day of festival to go and the field is FULL OF PEOPLE - estimates of attendance at the end is almost 15,000. Set up a tea stall observation post at the front of the marquee , Chris and Woo sell Real Colombian Coffee very successfully , Glenda and Jeff on later.
Good puppet shows on in the afternoon , picked up some ideas, occasional blip when they fuse with t he archetypes , nice feeling , variations on a theme,. sound and vision .
Break for a big performance outside later , looked excellent , well done , we could hear most of the voices form the stall, a fair way away.
Cooked up a meal later with Kath .Bean burgers and stuff, ate round the fire , is good but we need more light , night comes earlier all the time now . Wystics ( or mutations thereof) and Thandoy on again, good audience , lively night , caught some sleep during the set and up again when it ended to clear away , we voided out the bass guitar yesterday which was/is a real bummer .
Slow wind down and flake out .
Wind down day, everyone a bit spaced and slow , out for gas and fruit -veg with Tony , we nearly got obliterated by a careless lorry ! Ipswich is a strange town , and pretty grim, they dont eat enough fresh food for a start , took us ages of roaming their one-way maze before we found a real shop, but it was worth the trouble a good place. Back to find the cooking in capable hands , Gwen and Eric over for a rap, came across the wall with Gwen and picked up the quilt, one of the few things salvaged from the trailer. Cuppa tea at Seagulls place, watching the huge fire in the centre circle. Jah bin cruising about site all day gathering wood.
Lots of benders in this camp, looking strange and just landed on the barrenness of the stubble filed , coloured lights strung about the centre, up a tall pole and around ( the Original ) Ricos. Back to Tibet, , rested ( and finally got to read the Freakbrothers 7, some real wild stuff in it )
Dinner round the fire , a proper feast, all manner of good food, dahl, curried veg, chapattis' , rice, more veg and three huge cakes to follow up, with Thandoy green tea from Spike. Got well laid back so we never got across to the convoy party, though we could see the glow of the fire for ages, had a visit from a strange alien being , among others, who spoke in music a while before wandering off.
The skies are full of moving lights these daze.
Buzz cruises off on a scrapyard run , site slowly clears though no change in convoy country. ( discover last night the tsampa tea flavoured by our namesakes is made from barley- this might account for the barleycup(!) --But the rancid Yak butter is another kettle of dubious fish, maybe that's why they never became megastars, !
pack up slowly all day, it stays dry for us , groovy,replace the
Beasts wheels . Got two good ones for 24 pounds and another for eight
pound, got a spare for Horace now .
Most people leave today, the convoy packs amazingly quickly and gathers at the hilltop . Its a beautiful sight , lots of trucks painted now -suddenly . Wait for Phil the Beer to move up field , just after Jah lorry - with an astonishing mountain of tat- THEN OUT ON THE ROAD !
We wave them off at the gate, a count of 53 approx. Hi energy wave rolling down the road. Rearguard of Bill, Steve, and Phil leave soon after.
Echoing electric silence ,
back down .
Picking up a load of bender poles (we need more strong support poles). Finish packing and stashing , found a pair of sandals today , lovely , stop my feet cracking up . Reading God Emperor of Dune- most odd book , more prehistory.
The kids had a together day, built a fire , cooked themselves stew and made us all tea, greatly appreciated , wound up to leave all day so no kitchen service operating . Jim back, sorry to have missed the action, late night we get news of Glenda, we leave tomorrow.
First sight of the moon , due to cloudy skies, its riding high and nearly half full.
Venus square Mars today early, tension between male and female , clear opening for situation to be resolved by new age ethics. Sun square Uranus Tuesday- mechanics day, but hard to find joy in it . Moon in Virgo all festival, Saturn in Midheaven of chart- lots of hard work.
and the last packing , Glenda returns about noon- safe and sound , not many
left on site now. We leave mid afternoon, suddenly it begins to rain, we
stop for the night at Simon Trees place, a beautiful big house out
in the wilds down narrow twisted lanes scarcely a bus width wide , we cook
a good meal , have baths, music and talking . Catch the news - see the real
gun convoy the evacuation of Palestinians from Beirut , climbing onto flatbeds
brandishing Armalite rifles and roaring off into the desert !
This house is over 500 years old, a strange place, huge brick fireplace, thick oak beams , realise we are in Boadicea country , the land of the Iceni, and their last stand against Caesar. Strong echoes and memories.
Books of the Road and other oddities ....
Book of the Rd 1982 PT1
Were you there? Did you ever encounter the Tibetans in performance ?
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