Photograph by Daniel Gallan
Oppi is by far the best music festival in the country. One of the many things that makes it so special is that, in theory, it's impossible...
It's thick in the bush, the trees have thorns the size of great white shark teeth and the dust is so thick that if you spit it comes out as mud.
It's a game reserve without game but not without animals.
We're back from our dusty pilgrimage and thought we'd compile an Oppi Survival Guide for you guys. Here are some things that you shouldn't (but probably will) forget for next year:
1. Bring deodorant because, let's be honest, there is no point in showering. Five minutes (if you're lucky) after the water hits your body, you'll be covered in dust again. Rather mask your scent by dousing your pits in deo every half hour.
2. Wet wipes. These babies are of the most importance. They should be used before, during and after your deo showers. Whether you zip up your tent, crouch behind a bush or just wipe yourself down in public, don't underestimate the power of a wet wipe shower. They also double up as toilet paper if the bush is your john of choice.
3. Do not go to the top bar after 2am. For those of you who have read The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and are familiar with The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, this is The Bar at the End of the Universe at the Top of the Hill. There is no better place in the world to be - after 2am, that is. It's Oppi's best-kept secret. Please don't go there.
4. Don't join the mass exodus out of Mordor - after three days of heavy drinking, drugging, dehydration and dust you are bound to wake up on Sunday with a babalas of cosmic proportion. Don't leave - you will sit in traffic for hours. It's torture. You've got two options: don't sleep after Saturday night's headline act and leave immediately afterwards or rough it for an extra day. It's your choice.
5. Don't be a doos. Oppikoppi is like a hippy festival without the hippies. Okay, there are some hippies. Everyone is chilled, considering the lack of fighting, despite the population of about 15 000 drunk Afrikaaners. If you're there to cause kak, fuck right off. You are not welcome here.
6. Learn some Afrikaans. Oppi may be the most multicultural festival we've got but technically speaking, it's still Afrikaans. Have some respect and at least learn some phrases. Essential sentences to memorise include: "Moet asseblief nie op my kar pee nie" and "Dis groen, gaan jy dit rerig drink?"
7. Don't bring a dust mask - even though you'll think you look cool in photos, it doesn't really help with the fiery ball of dust that's going to take up residence in your chest on day one. It won't exit until at least a week after the festival and it ain't something a dust mask can prevent.
8. Take two days off work - one day is never enough for recovery. Doctors all over Joburg prepare for the dreaded Oppi flu so maybe book your appointment at the same time as you book your ticket. The festival will break you.
9. Go again. Every year after the festival I swear it's the last one. It never is and it always gets better... You might as well just buy your ticket now. And book next year's appointment.
10. You're not really a poes. You might be called one a couple of times during your stay in the dust but don't take it personally. In most cases, it's a meant in an endearing way. Trust. If you have been called a poes more than once then you must be a very likable person. Well done.
That should sort you out for next year's trek. Memorise this list for your own good.