Florence, Italy

Another peel off the mattress morning. A very slow beginning, I'd already missed breakfast and too late for the gym. Shower and pack. Just as I finished closing the bags, our road manager Tim called to say there was an hour's delay in landing clearance at the Florence airport and we'd be leaving that much later than planned. It was my cue to get out for a coffee and some food. The problem was, everything was closed on Sunday. I ended up in the Italian equivalent to Pizza Hut and had a Margarita pizza and a couple of cups of espresso. Not a bad way to start the day especially at 2 in the afternoon! As promised, an hour later we made our way to the Milano airport for short hop south to Firenze (Florence) Italy.

Not to be confused with Florence, Alabama...Florence, Italy is in the northern reaches of Tuscany. We're staying in a hotel on a piazza, that's a plaza to us yanks and not to be confused with the pizza I had earlier. As Frank Zappa once said, it's all happening here. Hundreds of narrow side streets congested with scooters and beautiful people saying "ciao" with shops offering the latest fashions and fab food. I wandered onto the square with Danny for a coffee and there was a Turkish group playing music, a children's face painting booth playing ABBA, several stalls selling leather knock-off bags of famous designers and one of those artists who works in spray paints doing apocalyptic visions of outer space via some kind of Aztec slant. C'mon, you know what I'm talking about. They finish each painting by setting an aerosol blast on fire and drying the completed picture. These guys gotta be so whacked out on paint fumes it's not even funny. Absolutely brilliant to watch, but nothing you'd particularly want in your home.

We played tonight at the Nelson Mandela Palace. Not really a palace, just another venue for gigs. The promoter must have fallen down on the job as out of a capacity of 7,000 only about 3,500 were in attendance. However, those who were there really rocked the standing gig and they were so with us. A well played show tonight and a man in every corner, which would make it a six sided ring.

Back at the hotel, we opened a couple of bottles of great wine and our own DJfletch dazzled and educated us once again with Archibald, Helen Shapiro, Groove Armada, Astrid Gilberto and Sleepy John Estes just to name a few.

So long,