Holy Moley…Whirly? – Paul, Birmingham

Twas New Year’s Eve…and nothing was stirring, save for a Monkey Pilot…and the rest of London.

Okay, well, i went with Will, June (Will’s fiancee), Jane (June’s twin sister), Hank (Jane’s husband), and Niel (Hank’s brother)- all those dudes live in a house together and we’ve only made friends since about November, when they were the only people to turn up to my housewarming party…Will liked my music, Hank liked my sofa, Niel likes everything =)

We’d got friends and they’d spent £175 to get down to London just cos I thought whirly was a good idea….

It was, a friend called Karen came too and we liked the place immediately. We bought different colour glow sticks for each of us, explored, just felt immediately at home with so much to look at …and kids!

Momo came on and we liked that, did a bit of dancing (at the front – where else), then we discovered the chill room and some of us hung there, then MP played Banco’s ‘How much reality can you take’ mixed with some kind of ethnic rap and I took one listen and just went bonkers and danced all crazy.

By the time that track finished, Will had met about 97% of the people there…seriously, I came across him in the middle room and he said ‘All the people here are amazing, look at the families…I want to get to know EVERYONE here’ or something like that, that made me really, really happy.

Until about 7am on a cold Euston station floor…

Between then and then though – whoa, group hugs at midnight, Joi after that – dancing full on through their set until New Zealand Kiwi man burnt my head, going to chill room and meeting lovesquaddies and Crunchymoles, Whirlyglenns and Rasta stewards smiling at me…getting hugged by the best hugging lady in the world, seeing System 7 and the parachute (which i’m under this Saturday, booked a space), telling everyone deep thoughts and how much I loved the music….

aaaaand then getting escorted backstage at 6.01am by Big Pete to meet Richard and Mary, and having long conversation with them about Will’s video collaboration with Banco. Chatting to Richard was v. cool, that made me very happy too. Then met Rich Morley, bought a couple of his CD’s and lost my change….which re-appeared magically in a fag packet. I did lose my Momo CD, bit upset about that still..ho hum.

Best thing that happened was that I made a true friend in June that night, Will and Niel kinda already were, but we really connected well chatting the chill room and have been really close ever since, which is something we both needed. Her and Jane are really good influences on our whole group, very special people if you get chance to see past the whole wifey-twin stereotype. Which i’m sure almost everyone at Whirly would.

It brought our group and friendships closer together. We’re planning a fun year in 2002 with lots of adventures, Planet Angels, Whirly Club nights, Glastonbury and WOMAD are all under heavy discussion and lift our days with things to look forward to.

Last year was a tough one, I gave up part of my life in the U.S. and realised I wasn’t particularly happy with what was left here either. Rebuilding it’s getting really fun lately and I credit New Year’s Eve Whirly for a lot of inspiration – thanks for everyone who took part in that evening!