The dust hasn't quite settled (hey it was dust, not mud this time) on The Gathering this year... a couple of dozen hardy types are still onsite cleaning up the mess
7 Jan 2001
The dust hasn't quite settled (hey it was dust, not mud this time) on The Gathering this year... a couple of dozen hardy crew are still onsite cleaning up the mess - taking down the marquees, ripping out the plumbing, patching up the bits of earth that had to be torn up and sorting the rubbish.
Spare a thought for them as you have that first shower when you get home - some of them have been there for three weeks, nothing compared to the few days in the wild that Gatherers deal with.
G1, or The Gathering 2001 was the first of a new Gathering. Initially the G2K was going to be a free closure to the Gathering's countdown to 2000 - for whatever reason (try 'we like it too much') it didn't happen that way and we left Cannan downs after an extremely wet entry to the 21st century for a new site in the Cobb Valley.
This G was new in a few ways...
Many of the original crew had moved on for various reasons - five years is a big chunk of your life and the G can be a demanding friend at the best of times - so while there were many old timers around, there were plenty of fresh faces.
The venue itself was a big change too. After five years, we knew pretty much all the ins and outs of the original site and had more than few tricks sorted to make it run smoothly, however some think the with the rain, and an earthquake, the mountain was telling us to move on.
Cobb valled was different indeed, kind of half native, half pine plantation, with a lovely river winding through it (and the insects that come with that!) - however the precept is the same...
Depending where you sit in the scheme of things take anyone where from 6 months to 3 weeks out of your year, haul (or get hauled) an obscene amount of heavy gear in to the middle of nowhere.
(from plumbing to power to sound, artwork, tents, fuel, records, food, toilets, computers, office gear, earthmovers, welding gear, fencing gear, danger tape, dj gear, lighting, rebar, mdf, army gear, water, sewerage tanks, scaffolding, more scaffolding, quad bikes, utes and ten thousand more things, plus a thousand or more you buy at the last minute from shops closed for christmas you cajole into opening)
Set it up before the gatherers get arrive, deal with the thousand stupid little problems that come up, and the two hundred other people you're working with, all the while remembering you're doing it for fun and because there's nothing else like this on the planet.
That's the basics at least. This year it felt a whole lot more sorted. We had actual real paperwork driving things, we pertty much stopped people burning themselves out, we excelled in the annual Howmuchgearcanyouattachtoyourbelt competition (Zane won, with an ice axe among other things)
Besiges all that, I think this was the best G yet - the main zone was phenominal, with the huge dj tower and giant sci-fi in the bush decorations. On the last night it was kinda misty. I stood down the back of the zone where the lasers were fattening out, making their tunnels all the way down the dancers - looked fantastic.
More to come...