Day 4 - Saturday 14th July 2007
Back in the bus. I get the front seat today. Bonus! My back is actually aching so I’m glad. We’ve got huge cabinets and heads to lug around on this tour and I think the heavy load-ins are taking their toll on the wee back injury I got up at a gig in Inverness earlier this year. For those who don’t know about that, we were playing a gig in a school and as we were carrying in the equipment I tripped over a drum bag and was thrown up in the air, landing right onto a monitor; the corner of which dug right into my lower back around the kidneys. I was screaming in agony at the time and couldn’t get off the ground. By the time the doctor had arrived, I was able to get up but I had damaged a nerve in my right leg and couldn’t lift it to walk. We had to enlist a wee girl in the school to play drums! After about 2 weeks, the back pain cleared up a and I could use my leg again properly. It’s only now I’m getting twinges so I hope it’s OK.
We’ve just this second gone through the border into Canada! We thought we’d get a lot of grief from the customs officers due to the amount of equipment we have but they didn’t seem bothered. I think they were more concerned with the eating their breakfast and drinking coffee.
We’re currently south of Montreal in Canada and are seeing some really beautiful countryside. Betty has just taken us the wrong way so we’re having to find our way back onto the freeway. Frank thinks he’s driving a go- kart. He’s taking corners like Nigel Mansell. Not sure if I mentioned this previously but the radio stations in America and Canada are brilliant. So far we’ve been singing along to The Kinks, Lola, The Beatles, Yesterday and Al Green. However, Tony Orlando and Don just came on Gill is trying to perfect The Slosh up the back of the bus. It sounds like the 18th birthday party from hell in the van right now. Apparently we’ll be in Quebec City at 12:30pm Thank goodness, I think cabin fever is setting in and it’s not even lunchtime.
We’ve arrived in Quebec City and are waiting outside our hotel....a Hilton no less!!! It’s a festival we’re playing so the organisers are paying! Yeeha! The view from up here is amazing so I’ll post a couple of pics on my Bebo soon. We’ve been up for what seems like half a day already. I’m feeling a bit tired so I might have a wee cat nap out in the sun to catch up on my sleep. The good news is that Tippi’s converse trainer has nearly dried and the stain is barely there. I tied it onto the wing mirror of the van so it got a good blow dry!
In the hotel now and I’m absolutely wiped out. Earlier in the day, I took a walk round Quebec City to see what it was like and I was pleasantly surprised. In some ways it’s quite old-fashioned and has lots of character about it. For a start, there are no chain stores (which is a refreshing change) and everyone speaks French. I walked towards what I thought was the gig. There was quite a large stage built up in the middle of the town square with bands playing and a small gathering of people watching so I thought it would be a tame affair with all sorts of people passing through who‘d catch a glimpse of us. I reported back to the girls later on in the afternoon and they too had seen this stage and didn’t expect that there would be a huge amount of people coming to watch us. We met Frank at around 3:30pm and we loaded our gear into the festival shuttle bus that would take us to the stage (quite extravagant I thought since we could see the stage from the hotel). We’d been in the bus for about 10mins and I quickly realised that we were going quite a roundabout way to get to the gig. The next thing we knew, we driving through a huge park and then at the bottom of a steep hill, there was an absolutely massive stage! It was about the same size as the Isle of Wight stage. We couldn’t believe our eyes. We’d been looking at the smaller stage in the festival previously, not realising the main event was further away! We then discovered that were on before two of Canada’s biggest selling artists; Alexisonfire and Billy Talent.
You can imagine our faces when we were led to our porta cabin dressing room and presented with the best rider we’ve ever seen and then to the amazing spread in artist catering. We had not expected any of this!
After we ate, we went on to do our sound check before the gates opened. The arena was huge and we were told that 50, 000 music fans were expected! We were due on stage at 7pm so hung out with the other bands at the dressing rooms to kill time. 10 minutes before stage time, we climbed up onto the stage and were absolutely flabbergasted to witness 15, 000 people crammed into the front of the arena! I cannot describe the how excited we were. I remember I actually got goose bumps when we finished the intro to the set and heard the screaming and the applause. It almost blew my hair back. That is easily the biggest audience we have ever played to and I couldn’t believe a few hours previous to that we thought we’d be lucky to see 200 people at the other stage! Even if there were 200 people there, we’d have been ecstatic! As you’d expect we played a blinder and have hopefully won over thousands of people and converted them to The Hedrons!
What an amazing unexpected day. I’m not sure if anything can top that at the moment. I’m sure as the tour goes on, we’ll have great times in many different types of venues. Bring it on. I just have to pinch myself sometimes to check that I really am here and it’s not a crazy dream.
I’m off for some much needed sleep before tomorrow’s 10hour drive to Toronto.