Never having been to a festival before and knowing even little about the festival itself I was excited and somewhat apprehensive about attending Diversity.
The festival was for four days and after a few ferry rides from Comox to Powell River and then Powell River to Texada, we finally arrivedin Blubber Bay the only ferry terminal on the north tip of Texada Island.
Going back to almost the turn of the century the Island was used and still is used today for mining and logging. It is the biggest of the Northern Gulf Islands, 50 kilometers in length which we drove the length of to get to the festival site. There are few homes on the Island which I noticed as we raced up the dusty limestone roads following the signs for Diversity to the beach where the festival was.
From one end of the Island to the other we made it to our camp site on Shingle Beach campground and rolled up beside our friends Hanna and Dave’s camper.
They promptly set up their Starcraft camper and adorned it with golden/pink flamingos and a sign that read “Camp Tramp”. Mostly named due to Hanna’s giant stamp that would stamp the word “tramp” on you in gold ink.
It was beautiful.
As we scuttled around in the fading light to get our camp site ready we noticed that the ground was uneven which would prove to be a problem with the van’s fridge and getting it up and running. After two hours of fighting with it trying to get it started we decided to give the van a rest and drove away from “Camp Tramp” to another spot which was flatter, still the fridge would not light!
I’m learning from many other forums a common frustration of these rad vehicles.
Afterwards Dave mentioned that perhaps the amount of dust from drive up got into the system, we deiced to sleep it off and see what the next day would bring.
Friday, day one of Diversity started out lovely, we slept in and made some eggs and coffee then walked down to the festival to check out the happenings. There was a large stage for electronic music, smaller stage for live bands and even a disco tent set up in a tepee. Many vendors showed up selling their handmade leather wears, hemp skin products, coffee and other tasty foods and of course the legendary “Bunkle burger” which after a night of drinking and other repasts was very tasty.
Hanna and Dave came down to the beach with captains hats, cocktails and an inflatable boat and took it out to sea. Mandie and I did some swimming in the tumultuous sea, there were some decent waves that knocked us around but the cool water was too hard to resist.
Mandie having been to Diversity before knew far more people and more about the festival then me. I decided to head back to the Van which Mandie danced away the night to tight jams.
Saturday, day two was more of a beach day and we spent the day in the sun. I was told that last diversity rained all weekend long and I though about the camping we spent when we first set out on this adventure and the amount of rain we got then and was thankful for the sunny hot days on Texada.
Sunday, day three was the final party and the last day of the festival. We headed down to the beach again and all four of us headed out in the inflatable dingy, beers, babes and bros on the S.S. Hawk. That night I finally got my dance on, I headed down to the festival and found Mandie, Dave and Hanna dancing around the glowing “Sangria Sunday” wagon. Which was a blue cooler filled with sangria and a metal cup, decked out with plastic flamingoes, flashing lights and flower garlands. It had it’s own spot on the dance floor.
We danced late into the night, different DJs donned the staged and a sea of lights and bodies moved around the dance floor.
Monday we left the festival grounds and met some fellow Salt Spring friends at an abandoned quarry mine from the 60’s, as we walked up the aqua coloured water shone in the sunlight. I’ve never seen anything like it.
The colour comes from the limestone in the remaining rock, I felt the softness of the water as we plunged in.
It was so clear and peaceful, almost hard to leave.
A bunch of us gathered on “Mermaid Rock” and shared a bottle of Mountain Mead from Hornby Island we had brought.
Friend’s of Mandie’s had us over with some other Salt Springers and we fired up the BBQ and sat around a picnic table sharing stories from the weekend and stories of past festivals and travel experiences.
It was an awesome place to end the festival.
Good food, good beer, and even better company.
Diversity was amazing but I will always remember the beauty of this Island and the good friends I’ve met and became more acquainted with since.
Thanks Texada, see you soon!