You’ll be pleased to know that misery Fox who was moping around the parish of TLF last week has gone. Dumped en route to my sixteenth trip (the journey variety not drug related) to the loveliness that is a small music festival in Oxfordshire.

Things got off to a good and early start in the form of lost cousin and alcohol. (Technically that’s not very accurate. She wasn’t really lost. We just haven’t been very good at keeping in touch) Her idea of marking a family reunion at a music festival involves cracking open the Prosecco before the sun has even has even started to understand what a yardarm is, never mind gone over it. Normally my weekday monotony is broken up with an 11.30am trip to Pret for a flat white (other coffee emporiums are available) but last Thursday it was an 11.30 fizzy white, after which there was only one way that things could go – and that was a bit Lionel (messi).

But don’t be thinking that it was all Idle Fox, just sitting around enjoying myself. I put a shift in at the ambassadorial department as we showed our commitment to international relations, meeting up with our Swedish friends who make the annual pilgrimage from Stockholm to a small village outside Banbury. It was the usual heady agenda – an early assessment of the World Cup was essential, with the requisite mockery of the England performance (funny we didn’t discuss Sweden’s absence from Brazil). Then after that we need to drink a lot, review just how bad the wine is that they have bought from Tescos and why they still buy it every year, stop them from talking ALL the time, and tripping over flags, camping chairs, dogs & small children. Only one casualty this year as one of them inflicted a mortal blow to my mum’s umbrella. Their excitement knew no bounds of course once they spotted the St Albans badge on my away shirt, “It is the colours of Sweden!”

Into all this bonhomie and general brouhaha with a musical backdrop, a little rain had to fall. It came not only in the form of the news of a 1-0 defeat for SACFC but also in the form of a BIG cloud on Friday afternoon. And let me tell you, sitting in a camping chair under a big umbrella does not make a Fox impervious to rain. Oh, how my fellow festival goers laughed at my very soggy shorts and the look on my face that made it clear the sogginess went well beyond the shorts……

When we half drowned on the terraces at Clarence Park there was a certain camaraderie in our dampness; we were in it together. Not here though, at my nice civilised middle class festival (well I assume that Shot Friday, where you consume as many dodgy coloured shots as the family sitting behind you can provide is a middle class thing?)

Nope, All I got on this occasion was plain and unstinting mockery as the Fox squelched off for a change of clothes. On the plus side I did get to try out my two year old never-worn wellies. I shall be a picture of sartorial elegance come the monsoon season at St Albans.

The saviours of the Fox feet

The saviours of the Fox feet

Now it is fair to say that the gents of Fairport Convention have never seemed like the most football friendly of bands. Not anti. Just not a massive priority. So for one weekend those of us who like our football and our Fairport get our limited football kicks (there’s a pun in there somewhere) by wearing replica shirts in inappropriate weather, reviewing the previous and previewing the coming season and running down our phone batteries as we operate apps and wotnot to keep up with the opening games.

And then
The men of Fairport had spotted the bleedin obvious in the acronym department and prior to their Satday appearance put together a nice line in wry humour as Fairport Convention FC were presented to the crowd via the big screen in proper MOTD styley. The YouTube clip doesn’t quite do it justice but it’s not bad (bear with it for the first minute).

Happy days. Favourite festival, favourite sport, favourite band.
Festival Fox

Match Sats
England 4, Rep of Ireland 1, Sweden 3
Attendance: 20,000
Alcohol consumed: Mmm. A bit. A smorgasbord of StellaProseccoRedwineRosewineFestiveFivebrewTuborgSanMiguelDodgyShotsBrandy
Snacks: A lot, but no bacon fries; still hanging out with the veggies

A small corner of Cropredy that will be forever St Albans

A small corner of Cropredy that will be forever St Albans

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