I booked us an apartment right in the middle of Berlin –with two entire days and nights off! The boys generally have to play ‘rocks,paper, scissors’ to work out who gets the best deal with rooms and beds. We don’t always get a bed or a room each!
I had told Amy to not bring over many warm things as we had experienced beautiful weather in the first two weeks. Well, Berlin was 12 degrees, and it felt freezing and the layer upon layer look wasn’t working so well. We checked out shops and cafes and the Berlin wall and a few historical areas. Totally love Berlin and loved being there again.
We got back to business on Wednesday with a great show in Cologne. We had a big bunch of women there from the L-Beach fest and we found that every night we had audience members from L-beach come to our German shows,so that is always a good sign!
We had several German shows that week – each and every one of them being new and each one being fun and with really awesome audience members. We also played at one of my favourite bars “Franks Bodega”. I was stoked to be able to bring Amy and Gav and Joel along for this special show. I had told them about Frank and his wine bar and the three very awesome and interesting shows we had already played there. Frank is kinda crazy. With a huge grin on his face, long wavy black hair, and he is passionate about his bar, wine food and live music. He also seems passionate about talking to us in German and then walking off. We often have no idea what is going on while weare there, but it all comes together. Before the show we got to try out this new electric bike that drives up to 45kms an hour, it was so incredible. We then went on to get ready in his ‘house’. You have never seen a weirder,crazier, more chaotic house in your life. While standing in the shower where all others in the house can watch you (windows…lotsa windows) it was where I realise “Shit, I really have to let all guards down while touring don’t I?” If the boys see me nude, they see me nude. If a stranger feels like sticking their face in too, well there is not much I can do about it all. We get ready in parking lots, restaurant toilets, in dark rooms with only our phone as a light on my hand held mirror… you just have to go with it. Not always that easy to do!
The gig was awesome. Really fun crowd. Great food – Frank is known for the amazing food he whips up on his camper like cooker behind the bar. Talking about bars we got up on the bar and did an acoustic song and the entire crowd lit sparklers up – it really was a magic experience. We stayed at a wonderful local’s house that night in a beautiful little town and an incredible house – but we had to be up at 7am to leave, so not time to check anything out!
Next stop was Termine – the border of Switzerland and Italy.Last year in September I did a trio show with Daryl and Jean-Guy close to Termine. It was a shocker of a day. 9 hours drive to play to 14 people. When we were shown our ‘accom’ it wasn’t quite what we had expected. Until a couple who had watched the show offered for us to follow them to their house. We chose to take the risk and I am so glad we did. Jonathon and Manuela live in a 400 year old nunnery. They have turned part of it into a bed and breakfast and it looks over Italy and sits next to a beautiful vineyard. It was a beautiful experience with them, and they invited us to do a private house concert for them this time.
We arrived and started setting up on our stage in the garden. As we were doing this, 12 caterers and chefs rocked up too to take over the kitchen and set up the bar for mojitos and amazing wine. It was a really special night and we got to socialize with some awesome people. We also got to eat AMAZING food.
The next day we hung out in the sun and headed into Italy for lunch. Sitting by the lake we realised just how lucky we are to be doing what we love and to be seeing the world and meeting some beautiful people along the way. That night we had off, so we stayed again with our new friends. Jonathon cooked the best lasagne I have ever eaten and we sat around the dinner table(which was 130 years old) with Jonathon’s children, Laura who is 17 and Nicko who is 16 and had such an experience. Nicko and Laura speak Italian to each other, but Swiss-German with their folks. And they all spoke English to us. Manuela, who is a lawyer and can fly planes, is also a wonderful pianist. Her and Gavin took turns playing to us and it was just beautiful. Did I mention the plane she drives is one that Jonathon made himself? It was a magic night. Music and wine and great company and mouth watering food. Such a good night off on tour!
The next day we ‘popped’ into Interlaken. The drive over the alps is still one of my all time favourites and I was glad to not be driving this time so I could take it all in. We had a quick one hour catch up with Sandy (mum’s cousin) then we went on to Bern. (meanwhile the boys went up the cable car to Harder Kulm for a beer). We played a private 30th birthday party that night. A cute little garden and a lovely night.
We had our last show with Gavin on the Wednesday night which was really sad for us. Gavin plays such an important role on tour – well, many roles. He keeps us sane, he keeps things calm, and he makes us laugh more than anyone you will meet. He also sings in German on stage – this hilarious little song about him not being actually able to speak German. The Germans loved it and I loved that he had the balls to do it on stage every night when I kindly requested him too.
Everyone was feeling a bit sad as this part of the tour was ending. We only had a couple more shows with Josse too. Josse is Mr Handyman. He fixes everything. Everything must also be packed perfectly and he is happy to take control of these things which makes our life a lot easier. He is a great drummer too. Josse also gives wonderful hugs and gives out a lot of love. Joel was joining us for the next part. Joel is Joel. Chilled at times, stupidly loud at times, and well, there aren’t really any words for Joel. He is a one –off and I love him.
Our last show was in a small German bar which was PACKED and it was one of our favourite shows. So happy Gav could have this as his last show! We had a beautiful drive back to Holland where we said goodbye to the guys and Amy and I were back at my home-away from home in Biddinghuizen. Holland.