Copenhagen, Denmark 16 June 2013
Awake far too early this morning and after 20 minutes realised I was up for the day. The next half hour was something from a Fawlty Towers episode. I went to the phone to ring room service and have a pot of coffee sent up only to find there was nothing on the phone to indicate how to reach anything in the hotel. Nothing, not the the kitchen, housekeeping, front desk... nada. I managed to find a single sheet of paper stuffed in the desk about some event being held there and for more information dial 9 for reception. I pushed the 9. After many rings, a dour voice answered and I made my request for a Continental breakfast. I was refused room service as the kitchen was too busy and I hadn't hung my card on the door knob the night before. Maybe I could try back in a couple of hours at 11. Are you kidding??? This is a hotel, there is a room service menu... albeit without a number to call... right here in my goddamn room. No, I'm sorry we are too busy. Fine. Oh, by the way does the hotel have a bathrobe that can be sent up? Housekeeping failed to leave one. Yes sir, the hotel has robes for a charge of 50 Krona. Fuckin'ell, never mind. I slammed the receiver down and got dressed. After poking around, hidden away in a cabinet I found an electric kettle and a canister of stale coffee along with a single-cup French press, a couple of packets of sugar and those little sealed capfuls of milk shot full of preservatives with an indefinite shelf life. I filled the kettle with water and got it going. There was no spoon, only a little wooden stir-stick, so I dumped a load of stale grounds into the French press then boiling water on top of them. When I put the lid on the beaker and pushed the plunger, hot water and grounds shot out the top and all over the carpet. Happily I didn't scald myself and sure as hell didn't give a rat's ass about their carpet. At this point anyone with half a brain would go out and find the nearest cafe. Not me. I began the whole coffee making procedure again, this time with better results. Right, things may be looking up. I took a cup from the cabinet, poured a packet of sugar in along with the preserved milk followed by the coffee. You know straight off coffee is going to be crap when it looks grey but at least it was coffee and I reached for the handle of the cup to get some of it in me. Hold on, what the fuck's happened to the handle? Where is it? I kept turn the mug around in profound disbelief. There was no handle on the cup. Not broken off, intentionally left off by design. Absolutely amazing. Too hot to handle, I wrapped a wash cloth around the mug and choked down the world's worst cup of coffee. When I mentioned this to the other guys later in the afternoon they'd also had the same experience with room service and the handleless cups. Guy topped it off by saying after he'd been refused service, he went downstairs and it was deserted. Also, the air conditioning fan in his room wouldn't shut off requiring him to remove several ceiling panels and yank the power. Fletcher's my hero.
Tonight's show was just across the bridge in Copenhagen so we didn't leave the hotel 'til 3 in the afternoon. Normally that's a luxury but in this case we'd have happily vacated sooner. Crap hotel.
Great pub though.
We've been playing shows earlier on the Scandinavian leg, usually 7:30, but tonight's was at 6:30 so we all piled straight into catering as soon as we got to the venue for an early dinner. Those of us who'd had bad room service experiences hadn't eaten at all and those who braved the hotels breakfast bar had as little of it as possible. We were all pretty starving when we walked into a miracle of food.... Mexican fiesta night from catering. Fresh flour tortillas, grilled chicken fajitas, chunks of tender beef slowly simmered in rich, dark red/brown chilli sauce, fried strips of breaded mackerel, spicy black beans, Mexican rice, guacamole, fresh tomato salsa, cheese, sour cream the entire works. This is a crew that loves food but I don't think I've ever seen plates piled so high, and then again, and a little more after that. A massive bowl of the most exquisite strawberries I've tasted topped the whole thing off. Brilliant, a majestically delicious Mexican overload in Copenhagen.
The show was at the usual venue, Forum, that we've played umpteen times with it's patchwork of multi-coloured seats. I was told many years ago this was done because they used the place to shoot TV shows and the different colours made it look like a full house even with spotty attendance. I've been seeing those seats since 1996 and they're looking pretty tired now, shabby and worn. We began promptly at 6:30, daylight streaming in around the blackout curtains. Our sixth show in a row and sounding great.
It was a runner and still fully daylight outside. The fleet of Rovers pulled up on the tarmac to the plane Here's a first... parked alongside the Legacy was a portable security trailer on wheels looking very much like a corn dog stand at the carnival. It was complete with a baggage belt that drew the luggage into the trailer and I assume through some kind of x-ray device. We were all frisked and patted down on the runway before reclaiming our carry-on bags and boarding. They were nice enough about it all but nobody had ever seen this before. It was pretty amusing especially the cotton candy carnival look of the caravan.
A rack of lamb and an hour later we landed in Frankfurt heading to one of our favourite hotels for three nights and a day off tomorrow. The place has a great pool and gym and I'll be present at both. The forecast for Monday is for 30c./86f. A few of us ended the day drinking a couple goblets of cold, clean and delicious Konig-Pilsner at the outdoor patio bar in the mild night air. What a lucky life.