Copenhagen (Kobenhavn) June 15

14 June

A day off here in Copenhagen that began late and slowly after dragging in from the pub last night around 2:30 this morning, with a full push down at the gym. It was nearly three this afternoon ’til I finally got out and hit the street. What is it about a sidewalk cafe in a country other than your own that make you glad to be alive? I fell into a simple cafe-bar for a brilliant chicken club sandwich and a pint of beer, served and enjoyed slowly. From there it was a troll through an open air market, then down to the canal street with it’s tour boats, olden and sometimes crooked colourful, buildings and myriad of umbrellaed bistros and bars. I picked one on the quieter end of the canal and for the price of a beer sat in the warm sunshine for an hour and watched the world go by. People of every stripe, walking, biking and on scooters, tourists and natives, a gumbo of Danish and English language on the air. There’s a great sense of freedom here in Copenhagen which is why, I suppose, so many Americans, particularly artists and many black ones at that, chose to ditch the States, live here and be treated as equal citizens.

15 June

Stormy in Copenhagen as we checked out of our hotel arriving at Royal Arena an hour earlier than usual. As the stage wasn’t ready for soundcheck there was only one thing to do…. catering. Remnants of lunch were still up and I dove into a delicious chicken burrito. I’m pretty tough wheh it Mexican food and what would this crew of UK chefs, great as they are, know about it anyway? They know exactly what they’re doing. Fantastic. Everything followed in order beyond that; soundcheck, dinner, a little private practising, change clothes, show. I’m sure it’s become a bore reading this every day and I’ve long ago run out of adjectives, but I will say 13,000+ people were not bored and neither were we. A runner from stage to the Copenhagen airport and a 2-hour flight to Lyon, France. A long walk through the deserted airport to the waiting cars and a half hour drive to our hotel in Lyon where we’ll base for a few nights. Day off tomorrow.

Richard Bennett