Monday, 30 July 2012

The folk back

Like always, one has to go back home. After the end of the festival, I got a lift back to Angers but, even though the city looked very friendly, tiredness was way to much for me to adventure myself walking and finding a place to crash so, after a few messages, I got my train back to Tours and stayed with Carol for another two nights, of which I was able to see the city again but on this time, adventure for other parts that I didn't go before.

So much love in the air!!!

I really find funny the sac of potatoes, waiting to be picked up inside by it's beloved one ^^  

Also, because of it's size, being there for a second time allowed me a lot more time to sit on the cafes to read, draw and write for a while, while enjoying the beat of it's people.

Because of my time spent at the cafes, I had the most unpredictable episode ever! In the morning of my flight, I head to the cafe to kill some time, while having a wake up coffe, watching the city waking up, trying to learn a bit more of my very rusty french. Everything was running smoothly when a girl - around my age - came closer to me and asked me for what I thought to be a lighter. Went to my bag, looked for it on the pocked and, when finally with with and turned to her, she had left. However, there was a surprise for me: a lucky strike cigar with a phone number!
When I got notion of what had happend, I looked around, trying to understand if that was real or a   prank of some sort. But no one came, leaving me to the very moment of illumination: someone just gave me a phone number on a cigar!!!!
Truly indescribable!

Indeed a wow of a trip, and a yay of a accomplished one!

Even though a bit sad for be leaving France so early, I am really glad for making here, as this smal walk around opened a couple of doors for the incoming month's festivities!  ^^

Monday, 23 July 2012

It has been found!

And it is Folk Music!!

The road up to Damada was a very funny one, to say the least. Full of lifts - I got 5, not including the one straight to the folky festival! This happened because of my choice of taking the national road rather than heading close to the motorway thus allowing me to have a more relaxed, longer journey up in France.
The day of the hitch was a long, hot day. Even though I got my stops, it also had it's walkable moments and they were not few, nor little some times. It started right after the sun came up, and as the sun was half-way between sleep time and lunch time, I was arriving at Coulans s/ Gée.
The small little village, with long wide roads, thin tiny houses - very cosy though - were the stage for what was gonna be on of the most admirable festivals I've witnessed so far.
Following the signs, I ended up on this football field, now place for the many tents that would be placed there.
My tent though, wasn't there yet, as Lena was still on her way down from Rennes here. It was amazing though for because of this, I met an amazing, and big! group of dutch people with whom I spend a lovely time with and also got to know some very interesting things, such as other festivals were I might go in the future! hehe

Every festival I go it rain, but only for one day/night! Truth be told, I find it very odd

Green, hilly pastures, incredible, warm sunny weather. Horses, feeding of the healthy grass, showing off and making those walking pass looking at them in awe, this was the surrounding of this small grand gathering.


Lovely people, from many different countries - 12 at least, from my counts - bringing their own music background and dancing styles, blending at the sound of amazing music, some of which have inspired me for life, and an energy that makes you wanna dance all day and all night, non-stop; just feeling the music, reacting to what is being played - or sang.

by Yann Ontsa-Ontsa :)

Divided by both dancing and music workshops, during the day and balls following jam sessions at night, are that very ancient recipe for a whole day of intensity and good fun. Amazing dancing workshops, particularly the junction between musicians/professors that set the quality of them very high in the bar, giving me the skivvies when thinking about how the night balls would be like.

As the day would set, everyone would make their dinner and get ready for the big, long night of dancing that was waiting for us. Some relaxation before the gigs, more towards the end of the festival, due to tiredness and bad nights of sleep - to much dancing - we are all waiting for the music to come: pure magic and joy!

From the simplest cercles to the most elaborate valses, every dance had a tingle in it. Not one of uncomfortableness but rather a very intense and unbelievable felling that was running on my body. Nonetheless to say that, every night was full on of dancing, until the very last chord - appart from the second night when I went to the tent to get my camera and the tent took hover me hehe 

Every festival/folk gathering that I go to has a different mood to it. However, all of them share the same basic things: friendship, companionship, share, love for the food ^^ music, dance - obviously - and most of all, love!

Thanks you all!

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Looking for Folk

I am thus here writing of a past travel of mine. One that was indeed incredible and magical, where many lands where tamed and a lot more remained to be discovered, in times to come.

The surprise element about this trip started right at the beginning, when I realised how late it was to print out my flight ticket. Also, the fact that I hadn't contacted a single person on Couch Surfing to couch me in Tours, the city I was flying to - just one hour away from London, flying. So, here I am at Bellingham, trying to find any place near Victoria Station, where I could print out my flight ticket, being this the place where I would get my coach to Stansted Airport. However, none but an hostel named 'Gay Hostel' was within 500m. Well, I needed to print my flight so, I got my stuff ready and got the train to Victoria. Once there and after a bit of walking around the area it was said the hostel was located, I found nothing but a few closed restaurants, a lot of constructions sites - for the Olympics - and habitation/office buildings. Damn, where to go... where can I find, at 2 in the morning, a place to print something? I was saying this, heading to the coach station when I looked to my left to see but a fancy hotel, called 'The Cavalry Palace Lounge'. Got inside, to be amazed by all its lux, head to the desk and asked for a printer to get my flight tickets out. For my surprise, I was only asked for a pen, which I had with the file and within a sec I had the real thing in my hands, thus saving 30£ of my pocket! Fewwww! I ready to go to France!!! :D

Farewell England

Curious fact: If you want to from London to France, it'll take you only about one hour, if you fly to central France, which was my case. This journey starts in Tours, heading then north, by hitchhike to Le Mans, where I should, if lucky enough, get another lift to Coulans s/ Gée, where Damada is gonna be held. Another spicy thing to the trip. I went to Tours without any sort of accommodation arranged. This happened because I send the requests too short noticed and flew to Tours with no reply whatsoever. What I knew though was that, if no CSurfer could get me a corner for me to sleep, I would have hostels to sleep at.

Bonjour France!
A chateau on the outskirts of Tours, viewed from the Airplain
Also part of Santiago de Compostela's route,

Cathedrale St. Gatien!

In very little aspects alike Porto, I found Tours very similar to my hometown. Not in terms of how the city is organised or the own aspect of the city - the influences are very distant, in some aspects, but rather the feeling when walking around Tours. This was a city that really made me feel like at home. I guess this happened probably due to the contrast between the old part of Tours and it's population, which I really found young. Also, the light, the mood and good looking people helped one feeling happier and more tranquil. Adding that, knowing that, two days after, I was heading north to a Folk Festival, on the surroundings of the city of the 24 hour car race!

La Gangette 

At the end of the first day, after knowing a big bunch of Tours - it is really not a massive city - I head to the tourism centre, to check my CS account to see if I had any positive reply to my request. Luckily, and oddly, I had a proposal from a girl I haven't even made the proposal to. This happen because, just before sending the proposals I, not to close the odds of getting a couch, ticked an option allowing my proposal getting online and public, to all the CSurfers from the area. And guess what! I had a proposal from a girl called Caroline, who had seen my beg on the website and, having spare room on her flat, sent me the proposal! Full of happiness, I ran to the phone booth and called her. After a bit of waiting, a   little car came and I knew I had nothing more to worry about in Tours!

On that night, we head to La Ganguette, where I met her friends and experienced a bit of what Tours and their time was spent - alike Porto sometimes - hang around the river, with some performances, music, a lot of talking and laughing, drinking and good, chilled fun!

Cloe and Caroline - thanks a lot for your kindness! 

The place I stayed was better than a 5 star hotel! With company every night - the Big Growb - and lovely talking, I had nothing to complain while with them. We even had the chance to watch City of God. All I can say is that even watching this movie was a new experience, as the language was set to French, making it very odd from time to time to make the relation movie-dialogue-language with, specially when they say: 'Dadinha o caralho. Meu nome agora é Zé pequeno porra!!! ^^

The Big Growb

Waking up very early every morning - leaving with them before heading to uni - I had plenty of time to do all sort of thing... and do them nice and slowly, koala style! 

After the second night, the big day came, where I would put my horrible french to work and see if things would really work the way I was planning or if, instead of heading Le Mans, I would end up in Leon - just kidding :p
The game is on!