…were great fun. Latitude a bit less rock’n’roll for me than usual as I took Gruff, but he enjoyed his first camping trip and first theatre show (the National Theatre’s excellent ‘Cat in the Hat’), as well as hanging out with Gillian Clarke in the green room (as did I). My event on motherhood, ‘the Pram in the Hall’ went well thanks to thoughtful contributions from Rebecca Goss and Catherine Smith, and drinking Pimms with them afterwards was definitely a highlight, as was reading poems to mark 30 years since the miners’ strike – a really moving event, culminating in a rousing speech from Michael Rosen. Some wonderfully inventive, provocative programming from Luke Wright this year.
For Port Eliot I was camping alone, but somehow managed to put up my tent. I hadn’t been before, and don’t think I could have caught the site in more glorious weather. There were lanterns hung in trees, and exotic looking palms, and walled gardens full of coloured daisies. I was speaking about Ovid for my friends at The Idler Academy, and they had the best site of all, next to the estuary with a lovely little bar serving gin cocktails with rose petals bobbing in them. I caught some great talks there – Julian Mash on Portobello Road, Matthew Green on 18th coffee-shops – and was pleased my own event was packed. And then I ate chilli-cheese dosas and lamb chops from Moro, and got smashed on prosecco and watched the awesome-haired singer Cate le Bon completely rock out. If you haven’t heard her before she’s pretty amazing, here: