• Lesley McLaren

West Coast Tour - Day 9 Wednesday 28th November 2007

Well, today was quite a long day. We got up at about 9am with fuzzy heads after all the red wine and carry-on. Frank was waiting for us at the van at 10 ready to take us to the Internet TV Station, Vlaze for an interview and performance. When we were driving round the block for the third time looking for the place I was saying to the girls that I recognised the area and asked if it we’d been there before. They looked at me as if I was daft. “Of course not”, was the reply. I knew I recognised the sign for Subway on the overhead footpath and the random BBQ with half chickens on it at the entrance to the Freeway. But no, they were certain we hadn’t been in that area before. Well, we found the correct street and we drove up to a familiar sliding iron door. Rosie I think said; “Oh yeah, this is really like that place we were before”. It was the same place! There were apologies all round. They doubted me cos my nickname is R2 since I usually shuffle around like a wee lost robot bumping into things and forgetting the way out of venues or the way to the dressing rooms. Backstage areas are usually a maze of corridors hence the reason I get lost. Maybe I watched too much Labyrinth when I was wee. That image of David Bowie in tights has been burned onto my retinas!

We piled into the TV station which has changed its name from the last time we were there, hence the confusion. It seemed awful early to be banging on a drum kit and cranking up the amps. It was a struggle emptying the van and carting it onto the stage but it had to be done and the sooner the hard bit was over, the sooner we could get on with wakening up the neighbours with our melodic racket.

Once the performance was over and the interesting interview wrapped up we hit the road for San Diego. You would think after the last tour when we were travelling for at least 10 hours every day that’d we’d be used to 2 hour drive to San Diego. This hasn’t really been the case at all. One hour into the journey my head was rolling forward with sleepiness. It felt like we’d been travelling for hours! On route to San Diego, we pulled in at a shopping outlet in Carisbad to part with the last of our cash on cheap clothes! It was a great place and we spent a couple of hours milling around. There was also a cracking diner where we had a high calorie lunch. Top banana!

It was about 6pm when we hit the road again for San Diego to the gig. Rosie had quite an uncomfortable journey as she’d bought strawberries drenched in chocolate and somehow sat on one without realising. The seat was covered in melted chocolate as were her jeans. It was like some kind of dirty protest (Partride style). I think she should be getting the nickname, The Spill and not Gill.


Yet again there was no leg room in the bus for the many shopping bags taking up valuable space. I’m going to start wearing my flight socks in the bus cos I’m sure the lack of movement in my seat is dangerous!


We arrived at the venue at 7pm. As usual were first on the scene with nobody around, greeted by a chained up door. It was so inviting. The neighbourhood was bit scary so we sat in the van with the doors locked in the dark waiting on someone to come and open up. Eventually, someone on a motorcycle drove up and parked behind the bus. It was hard to tell if it was a male or female at first as they removed their helmet and shook their locks vigorously like a Pantene advert. It turned out to be the sound guy so he let us in and we got set up. The venue was a really cool place. It was fitted out like an old fashioned Beauty Parlour with seats along one wall with old over-the-head hairdryers attached, chequered floor and 50s style bar.


Once the place opened up to the public, the DJs played loads of 60s garage which was right up my street. We played a great set and met people afterwards who and been to see us play in Carisbad before. It was great to meet people who remembered us from the last tour and made the effort to come along and see us again.


We were dreading the drive back to LA (all 2 hours) so we ordered a cargo (this is a collection of unopened beers) for the bus ride home. We got the laptop on the go, hooked up the speakers and played The Proclaimers at full volume and sang Letter to America and the top of our lungs. After about an hour of asking Frank to stop at a gas station so we could go to the lavvy, he EVENTUALLY pulled in. I’m sure he does that on purpose as punishment for singing out of tune and carrying on up the back of the bus when it’s 2am. Well his crabbiness just made us more hyper. Anyone overtaking the bus would be forgiven for thinking there were a pack of monkeys swinging from the handrails on board.


Anyway, we got to the doors of the gas station and were greeted by a wee man who looked like he’d won first place in a gurning competition. He informed us that he had to close the toilets because someone had come in earlier and smashed them up! What?! We were now worse than desperate so there was nothing else for it but to duke round the back of the car wash and suffocate the ants. You get my drift. The band members involved here shall remain nameless but one always kept edgy.


I think I’ve said enough.


Cheerio!

Soup x