Whilst having my second, let´s be honest, already my third coffee break in the Stadspark, I could hear them: techno beats blasting through the streets, bouncing back and forth between the inner city area and the police station. It´s not yet the weekend, is it? Well, I would know that. It´s only Thursday, Bruis starts on Friday. This is the festival’s sound-check, I suppose.
Looking for familiar faces around the library, my attention was caught by a new anti-smoking sign in the entrance area telling students NOT to smoke anywhere in the front of the library. But this used to be the place where students met again after the holiday. That´s not fair! Quickly my first week´s enthusiasm was overshadowed with the annoyance over rules and regulations. The Bruis festival would hopefully be more welcoming. It definitely had a chance of making up for the lack of socializing that day.
Nick Mulvey and the soul performance of Charles Bradley were headlining amongst others this year. As my mind went rather blank when looking at the timetable, I decided to go and see the UK band Bombay Bicycle Club on Friday, of which I knew they had a place somewhere on my Spotify list.
On the way to the festival, I joined a stream of colourful, musical and artsy people. “Everyone from Maastricht is out and about”, my friend says with a big grin on his face. Students next to mothers, fathers next to teenagers: they all unite in front of the stage. And so, that Friday night, I quickly became one with this happy moving mass, where boys took girls on their shoulders to give them a better view and friends shared beer after beer. I manoeuvred myself holding a beer in my hand, some imaginary Glastonbury festival wellies on my feet, towards the front of the stage. There I was, surrounded by welcoming faces, moving to the voice of a female singer, playing her songs in front of visuals, featuring happy dancing skeletons. It might have been the late night summer warmth (no wellies necessary, really) the communal feeling, the indie tunes or maybe even the beer but I felt like one of them, a dancing happy skeleton.