I absolute love people watching - especially at a festival. I think it's pretty safe to say that if you want to idly spend your time observing the diversity that occurs within humanity, a festival is the perfect place to do so. I recently got back from Rainbow Serpent Festival, (Yes, another festival!) and I spent quite a large portion of my time doing exactly that.
I'm hardly the most fashion conscious being in the world (I'm in fact probably in the running for the least clued up,) but I'm absolutely fascinated by festival attire. I honestly love seeing other people's creativity and ideas, and it's amazing how much time people obviously spend on costumes, signs and body art. In my opinion, the world is a much better place when there's glitter involved too.
As well as all the colours and face paint, headbands and sequins, there's actually something really special about watching people enjoy themselves - especially when it involves music. I thrive off seeing people's faces light up when they hear the first notes of their favourite tune kick in, or two friends grin at each other before embracing or pulling off some questionable dance moves. It's the best feeling when the DJ drops a tune that creates an energy in the crowd, and I can't help but look around and just take in everybody having a good time.
For a couple of years now, one of my favourite words has been 'sondering,' I thought about it a lot this weekend. It means 'the realisation that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own - populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness.' I smiled at a lady with a shaved head when she caught my eye from across the dancefloor, she walked over and gave me a huge hug before smiling back and walking off to disappear in the crowd, and I couldn't stop thinking about it after. Isn't it mad, that for a split second, you can share a small moment of intimacy with someone, brush their arm as you pass them in the street or even just make eye contact for a quarter of a second, and that's it. They're a flicker in your life, they appear for such a small portion of it, and for the most part they're completely irrelevant to you and you won't ever give them a second thought. Yet they have an entire life themselves. I'll probably never see that woman again in my lifetime. Or the man who turned to me on the brink of a particularly big drop in a song, grinned and proclaimed that 'it's time to celebrate,'
I guess when you're travelling, you get to cross paths with a more diverse selection of people than you would normally. I suppose I'm going to spend a lot more time than usual 'sondering.'