Tuesday, May 12, 2009

day 8 - the comeback in Krefeld

Jayme slept only 2 hours last night in Hotel Russia #2 (aka:the Mercure, Hameln)
I woke feeling a bit strange myself
my face hurt
like I’d been punched
we checked out
and then walked to a bakery for some breakfast
I ended up having lunch because I saw a vegetable and cream cheese
it was green
I hadn’t seen much green lately
I thought I’d better eat it
our breakfast was nice and only 6 euros
Gavin had a “chocolate bazan” (croissant)
the town was also a little calmer
which was much nicer than yesterday
on the way back G did his “birdie customer!” routine
were he chased one of the street pigeons
it was really cute
I wanted to film it
my video camera was dead
we headed out of Hameln
with not an ounce of sentimentality
today’s drive was only 2 hours
the routing on this tour has been a lot less punishing than the first two
which is nice for the driver
I was hopeful that we’d have another good day and get back on track
I booked a hotel on the fly last night to save sagging morale (go internet!)
it’s called the Atlanta
in Vluyn Neukirchen
just outside Krefeld
it looked really nice online
with Jayme not sleeping much and also knowing the promoter had booked a 50euro pit
I didn’t want to take any chances with two bum nights in a row
this 5 star Hotel was also only 89 euros a night
I absolutely believe that for close to 100 euros per night you can stay in a posh hotel with lots of personality
this is why I get so pissed off when we stay at places that suck for the same price or more
they’re just ripping people off!!
a possible book idea?
the drive today was on one of my least favorite autobahns
Krefeld is just outside the crowded industrial epicenter of Dusseldorf/Dortmund/Koln
the traffic is horrible
18 wheelers as far as the eye can see all hugging the right lane
crawling along
while Audi, Volkswagon and Benz folk race by in the left lane at speeds well over 100 miles per hour
it’s a bit disconcerting
we got to Vluyn around 2:30
a peaceful suburb
just as I had imagined
the hotel was really nice
our room had a kitchenette
3 awesome views
and carpet that actually looked like it wasn’t going to crawl away in shame
we were happy
we spent the entire afternoon relaxing
Jayme watching CNN on the couch while I caught up on emails
around 6pm we all went to Kulturrampe
it was only about 10 minutes away
we had to get on a highway to get there but it was easy
I’d played Kulturrampe once before for the “Snowing In Mein Heart” tour in ‘07
it was the last gig of the tour when Matthias and I pulled an all-nighter driving 10 hours round trip from Hamburg in the pouring rain
thank _____ (enter your God’s name here) that tonight was not gonna be a repeat
I remembered the promoter Markus
was really nice and I also remembered how to find the Rampe
(we got lost the first time as it’s in an industrial loading dock with no address)
we got there with no problem
Markus greeted us warmly
I set up
had a quick soundcheck
and then M told us we could go have dinner at a Greek restaurant next door
no one there spoke English but we did alright communicating with them in our pigeon German and hand signals
J and I had fish with fries
G had fries and ice cream (health food) while also making a new friend (see video)
I was really glad my family was with me tonight
I get tired of going to all the shows by myself
they are the best entertaining company to have
anyway we had a really good time at dinner then walked back around the corner to the Rampe
I went on at 8:30 and played a short (for Europe) 45 minute set
my label mate Johannes (aka: the late call)
had the 2nd slot which was nice so we could get home early
the sound was excellent
the audience was great
really polite and receptive
I felt like there was no language barrier here tonight at all
I also felt very relaxed and really enjoyed having J and G in attendance
it was a solid show
I even made a new German friend afterwards who asked me to guess where he was in 1978…Eastwood High El Paso

it’s a small world indeed


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