Stuttgart, Germany 5 July, 2015
Back in the Euro time zone again, I’ve been wrestling with a little jet lag the last couple of days. Wide awake with just three hours sleep, I ordered some coffee and scrambled eggs that arrived with a basket of freshly baked rolls, a plate of cheese and orange juice. I don’t usually go in for large breakfasts but devoured it all. I finally managed to get back down to sleep for an hour before it was time to pack up, check out and shove off to the gig.
We arrived a couple of hours earlier than usual at the venue, Schleyerhalle. Germany is still in the grip of an historic heat wave, another day in the very high 90’s. Schleyerhalle, an arena from the 1960s has never been up-dated to have air conditioning. After several near 100 degree days, the place was like an oven and apart from the band’s dressing room the heat was inescapable and relentless. Once more our crew and the catering boys worked through miserable conditions, never complained and no doubt dropped 10 pounds in water weight a man.
It was a full house of 10,000. As I stood backstage just before the house lights went down, I noticed a fluttering through the entire audience. 10,000 people all fanning themselves at the same time. House to black and on we go. Another steamer of a show in all ways. Crisp, edgy, at time up on two wheels and definitely sweaty. The hard thing is trying to keep it out of your eyes which is just about impossible. It also managed to seep into the in-ear monitors which in effect made things sound under water, which I suppose they were. Somehow it all added up to a great gig. It’s good to be back on the second half of the tour.
A runner and it was great to board the Legacy again and see Laetisia with gin and tonics in hand. A short but tricky flight into Wolfsburg. With heavy thunderstorms all around like land mines, our crack pilots managed to dart and weave around most of them though not without some turbulence. I don’t think I’ve ever flown through rain that heavy. The wing lights were on and the sheets of water were nearly solid. Hold onto those drinks boys. A television screen in the cabin showed our intended route in one colour and the circuitous one we took in another. Zig, zag and round about. Hat’s off to our pilots. We landed safe and sound and drove through this very strange industrial town, the home of Volkswagen. Wolfsburg seems to have been built around the motor works with a hotel plopped right in the middle of it all. Too weird.
Neither Mike, John or I were ready to give up the day and headed down to the hotel bar that was full of very drunk screeching girls and loud guys who had participated in some kind of long boat race and had come in first. It really was impossible to be in there. We ordered drinks and found a quiet lounge just off the lobby to drink and talk there and continued to do so until 3:30 in the morning.
Day off on Monday. It’ll be the gym and visit to the hotel pool if the weather is clear.