Feel OK get up and have a mooch about, Bruce is taking pictures of some kind of monument
“This is where the Nazis loaded up the trains with Jews for the death camps. They’ve removed the mural with the guards kicking the prisoners onto the train”
There are photographs of the trains being loaded on the information boards. It’s quite chilling looking at the photo’s then glancing to the right and it’s the same place.
I’ve been to loads of places around the world where terrible atrocities have been inflicted by men on fellow men, women, children and babies.
Every one makes you draw a deep breath, thank your lucky stars that it wasn’t you that was being abused, maimed, tortured, killed.
Mankind’s capacity for destruction never ceases to amaze me.
Onto Cologne for a gig and a day off. The Cologne live how the fuck are we going to get 3 bus’s and trailers in there. Looks like I’m going to have to park in the smoking area great!
Get to the venue, there’s a lot of building work opposite, and the kiosk has gone so reversing in should be a lot easier, where’s the other bus’s?
This is a fuckin pain, reverse to let the demolition trucks in, go forward to let them out. After an hour and half of this,I’m a bit fucked off, I can’t park anywhere else unless I go into the compound. I’ll have to come out again when the other bus’s get here. Fuck it.
Odd there’s only one chap here cleaning up load in is in 1/2 hr, where’s the other fuckin bus’s??
OK there’s no posters for the gig, strange but if it’s sold out there’s not much point advertising it. I go into the venue, the cleaner looks surprised.
“Gutten Morgen, toileten bitte’”
My German is done unless I’m ordering beer or a kebab.
“Ja Ja mein bus au musician” (yeah French/German hybrid)
I show him my laminate with the dates on. He points to Cologne.
Theres a slow dawning going on
Fuck we’re not here!
He lets me use the toilet I go back to the bus, some demolition truck driver is knocking on the cab window.
“Hello, sorry I go” (My Germanis obviously that good he thought I was one, well he was saying stuff in German to me and making hand gestures)
Well I moved forward to let him out, then went upstairs to wake Jon up. Who was most impressed as he had only gone to bed 3 hours prior, and pointed out that the venue had been changed. I know it’s been fackin changed no feckers here only us. I wish someone hadn’t told me about it, as the correct venue was over the other side of town. Still I’m only the driver why the fuck would I want to know or care where we’ve got to go to.
Cologne is cool but in WW2 it got quite a bombing, just not the fucking railway bridges that are nearly all too fucking low for my bus. The city centre is littered with low bridges and narrow streets, you don’t want to be driving through there at all in a double decker.. This information was given to me by a promotors rep Wolfgang 5 years ago.
His exact words when I asked why there were so many low bridges were
“it’s your RAF’s fault!”
“Ja if they wasn’t so bad at bombing we would have had all new 4 metre bridges”And the motorway was all snarled up.
“Sorry Chachi this is the wrong gig man, get back on the bus!”
“OK dude I’ll get some breakfast and come sit up front!”
We get to the correct venue, I asked Griff the best way to get in and where they wanted me, parked up and beer and sleep.
Watched the gig as we had a day off the day after.
Me “We going to Tilburg?”
Jon “No we’ll stay here tomorrow and go early hours!”
“Are you sure?”
“Yeah Cologne’s going to be better than Tilburg” ah Jon you were so wrong. Still it’s all good knowledge for next time.
“OK I’ll have another beer in that case”
Get up Cologne Harley shop’s next door, I’ll go and buy some stuff no I won’t it’s a Sunday and its shut. BOLLOX! Of course why would anybody buy motorcycle stuff on a day you’re not at work, and most bikers are out on their bikes. And would turn up at a Harley shop.
Sod it then I’m off to treat myself to a breakfast kebab. I check out Yelp which recons there’s a good restaurant just around the corner, so that’s where I head.
It’s ram packed so it must be good, I opt to carry on walking its a nice day. I did notice that I am actually the only white person in the immediate vicinity.
There’s loads of Turkish looking blokes just hanging about in the street, smoking fags and doing nothing. What the fuck is that all about.
Fantastic kebab at the Mevlan restaurant. The mocha is taking a bit of chewing through. Turkish coffee is like eating grounds. It’s rough in texture and attacks the enamel on your teeth. That’s why they give you water to drink with it. You ain’t gonna sleep for a couple of days once you’ve eaten it.
Back to the bus, bit of a sleep another mooch about just wasting time really until we are ready to leave. Get a 45hour break in so it’s not all bad.
Off to Tilburg where I knew the others would already be there, I was there December so I know there’s only room in the compound for 2 bus’s.
I park out front of the Venue power up and go find the most important thing for band n crew I the Netherlands if they’re smokers.
“Hi mate where’s the nearest coffee shop, and what’s the crack with buying here, have you got the locals only law here?”
This is followed by one of the best answers ever.
“Yes you need to be a citizen to buy weed here it shouldn’t be a problem.
I went to Russia, the tour manager from the band said that. ‘In Russia every car is a taxi. You wave a few roubles about, a car will stop. You say where you want to go and you just pay.
Similar applies here tell a local what you want. Give them some money they get it.
Every car in Russia is a potential taxi.
Every local in Holland is a potential drug dealer.”
Absolutely fucking genius, I was nearly sick with laughing at the thought of an old granny taking your money, buying a bag of weed and demanding a bifter as payment.
Still when I look at my reflection I see a potential grandad looking back at me so maybe it’s not such an absurd thought. Ahhhhhh shit now I’ve just depressed myself.
Had a beer and a good chat with Chris the bands Manager/Sound engineer/Tour manager about the band, music in general and putting the world to right.
Watched the show, bed then off to Belgium. Same, same good show I bought a European extension lead. Been meaning to start a cable collection for ages, it seemed a good time to start.
Gig was great off to French France and gay Pareé!
Yayyyy no parking so I’m off to BERCY and my favourite bar. Thee such a mixture of folk in there from business men and women, through to Parisian Hells Angels. It also does the best Pizz-ah! Fuck it’s changed hands since October. It’s now a fuckin Chinese BOLLOX!!!!
Off to les Spectacles then for an eye watering priced steak, wine, and coffee. Then it’s back to my bunk to sulk. This is shit! There wasn’t even anybody any good on the skate park which is attach to the coach park. Fuck Paris……Well this time anyway.
Europe done off back to Blighty. G.I.P.