After a grand week at home in Nashville it was time to pack the bags again and leave for Amsterdam for our first show of the Kill To Get Crimson Tour. Thursday the 27th was departure day for Glenn Worf and myself, an early afternoon departure flight to Atlanta then through to Amsterdam arriving early Friday morning. The plan was to meet the rest of the band there that afternoon and have a nice leisurely run through of the show Friday evening before the real thing on Saturday. Glenn and I arrived at the gate to find our flight had been slightly delayed, then continued to be delayed to the point of missing our connection to Amsterdam. We came to find out that the FAA had cracked down on several airlines due to maintenance schedule violations, grounding several hundred planes round the country, in effect hobbling the airline industry. People laying around everywhere in the airports of America, hundreds and hundreds of bags lined up like soldiers in the luggage collection area. You were lucky if your bag was among them as so many ended up on flights going elsewhere without their owners. We were rescheduled to fly out the following day after wasting five hours at the Nashville airport and another hour in the luggage claim area while Glenn tried to sort out what the hell happened to his bags. The best answer he could get was that it had been sent on to Atlanta on a different flight and would, with a bit of luck, turn up in Amsterdam whenever we got there. I was one of the lucky and found my bag among the piles. My wife Tina graciously came to collected us and delivered Glenn home. By the time we got back to the house it was 6 in the evening. This mis- adventure had begun six hours earlier and got us no further to beginning the tour. The airline industry, once strong, successful and proud has been reduced to little more than Greyhound Bus transportation and the passenger takes the lumps.
With our one day cushion for error now gone, Glenn and I arrived back at the Nashville airport early Friday morning to try again. Try is the wrong word. We HAD to get to Atlanta/Amsterdam and we HAD to do it today. Fortunately, things were running again and we caught a flight to Atlanta with plenty of time to make the Amsterdam connection. Did I say plenty of time? How about a 5 hour layover?! Fortunately we were escorted to the business class lounge that was at least quiet, warmly lit and the bar had magically delicious, golden Warsteiner brau on draft....from Germany to my lips....well, from Germany to Atlanta...with probably less confusion and delay than our flight.
Arrive Amsterdam 6:50 a.m. Met at the airport by our pal and driver Eike who whisked us to the hotel and a few hours of sleep before going to the gig for our first show of the tour. We ran through things one last time and trusted that the rest would be lingering round the old memory.
Later that night.....
Our first gig was a joy. It seemed odd that there were no first show jitters, but after a couple of weeks rehearsal and the musicianship of the band we got right back up on the bike and rode through a great first show of the tour. All commented on how it felt like we'd just done a show last night. Over the next few nights the show will continue to get legs and gain confidence. All in all things were great on stage and off (lights and sound) and it's just the beginning. Stay tuned.