Wednesday, March 16, 2011

golden plains

I think this year's Golden Plains festival was my favourite of all the Meredith and Golden Plains festivals we've been to. There were so many good bands and we spent most of both days at the amphitheatre enjoying the bands (usually I spend almost half my time at the campsite when there's bands on I don't really care for). I'm not even sure which band was my favourite but The Hold Steady, Graveyard Train, Belle and Sebastian, The Besnard Lakes and Justin Townes Earle were some of my top picks for favourite.
The weather was almost perfect. It got a bit hot the first day and stayed warm overnight. The next morning started out fairly hot and just when we were thinking we would have to go back to the campsite for shade (there wasn't enough for everyone at the amphitheatre), the clouds came in and covered the sun. The cool change came and brought a little bit of refreshing rain. It got a bit cold overnight (glad we brought the "donkey blanket" which kept me extra warm at at night). I thought we would have to pack up a wet tent in drizzle on Monday but we woke up at 9:30 to the tent getting way too warm in the sun and everything was pretty much dry when we packed up.
We ate really well too. This was the first time in a few years that we've gone on our own, in our own (hired) car instead of packing a few of us into a friend's car with all our gear. We decided that we should take advantage of all the extra space and bring anything we want. We brought a LOT of food-- good food. For breakfast we had peanut butter and banana sandwiches (although Zac ended up having lentil dip sandwiches). For lunches we had Wolffie's black bean and lentil salad from La Dolce Vegan!

Snacks included lentil dip on vita-wheat crackers or bread, dried berry and nut mix, corn chips and homemade salsa, homemade tofu jerky, apples and chocolate. We also decided this year to take a thermos of coffee (don't know why this has never occurred to us before) so we didn't have to stand in massive lines to get our caffeine fix in the morning. It worked great (we were planning on having iced coffee but never put the thermos in the esky and it was still quite warm 30 hours after I made it). The only thing we could have done better on was the beer. It's always hard buying cans cuz that's not what we usually drink and Zac tends to get the cheapest cans possible. We've now realized that's a stupid idea and we should get proper beer in cans (I was a little jealous of all the people I saw with Asahi aluminium bottles and Heineken cans).
We had more than enough food to go without buying from the food carts (and I didn't even make the macaroni salad I was planning on making) but we like the food stalls so we bought dinner late each evening from the carts. The first nite we had burritos from the Mexican cart (Gringo Tacos, I think). It was ok but kind of bland compared to Trippy Taco. Their vegan version just involves omitting the sour cream and cheese which makes it a bit dry. You'd think they could add guacamole for free (normally $1 extra) considering they're dropping 2 other ingredients. The next night we got some dumplings after seeing someone walk past us with a plate of them. They tasted even better than they looked! The plate had white rice and a salad that had mint and aniseed-- it was amazing and so full of flavour. The dumplings were really nice too (way better than the frozen ones I've been buying) and the staff were very friendly and helpful showing us the vegan sauces.
Not sure how next year's Golden Plains could top this one.....
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