Saturday, August 27, 2011

Eddie Vedder solo tour - July 2011

Flew home from the UK and drove straight to Long Beach for my first Eddie show of this leg... Had to miss the San Diego show because of the business trip. I wasn't going to go to the Long Beach show because I'd be jetlagged, but on the public sale, I tried for the hell of it and pulled up what I thought was first row, but turned out to be fourth row... still, a great seat I couldn't pass up. It was a very good show, and what a treat it was seeing Glen open for Eddie, and sing with him on stage.

After Long Beach, I went home, then to LA the next day, and picked up my niece Emi who was visiting out here from New York. Randall had come a week earlier to explore Sunset Strip and LA, and Lorcan was coming for the LA show.

After the LA show, we headed up to Santa Barbara, where we met Jen and Diana... Diana made Jen leave the show part way through and they sat in the car the rest of the show. They had bleacher seats (unknown to me), so were uncomfortable... still, when I asked how they enjoyed the part they did see, she responded, "He can't sing..." Okaaaayy.

We said goodbye to Emi and drove up to the Bay Area and stayed with my sister Sue. The next day, I took Randall and Lorcan to Half Moon Bay...

Eric went with me to the first Ed show in Oakland at the Paramount Theatre, a lovely place. We went to eat dinner, but few restaurants in the area, and the Japanese restaurant there had a 1 1/2 hour wait... so Eric got a hot dog for dinner, and I had nothing... Keith went the next night, so I made a reservation at the Japanese restaurant, which was expensive, but quite good!

The following day, we started out to drive up to Portland. We were driving 2/3 of the way and staying in Coos Bay, OR. We went up 101, and it was beautiful... but I had to insist that we visit the drive-through tree!

Every time we stopped in Sonoma/Humbolt, Randall said, "These people are fucking weird!"

The Oregon coast was gorgeous, but the lads didn't want to stop as much as I did... Still, since I drove most of the way, I managed to make a few stops... :)

We finally made it to Coos Bay just before sunset, and we checked in then went to town in search of some food, wandered along the wharf area taking pictures, only to find all the restaurants had just closed at 9pm! So we found a pub which still served food.

Poor Lorcan... while we were driving up to Coos Bay, he got a text from Glen asking him to come out for a pint with him that night, since it was an off night... but Glen was already in Portland...

Next day, we continued up the coast a ways before heading inland.

In Portland, I managed to get extra tickets for Emi (who had flown up to Portland for a wedding and to see Mikey), Mikey and his girlfriend. By now, Randall and Lorcan had met practically my whole family! We went for a drink afterwards.

On to Seattle! I had booked a room at the Red Lion, and last minute, Amy decided to share my room... but the Red Lion had lost my reservation. They decided to honor it, but in the meantime, Amy remembered that she had forgotten to cancel her room at the Westin, which, at her airline discount, was cheaper. So we decided to just stay there. Upon checking in, they upgraded us to a higher floor because of my hotel membership... From our window:

The Heavenly Bed!

Amy and I went to this great vegetarian restaurant before the show. It was so good, we had to go there the next night... mmmm...

The first night, Amy found out that she could put her name on a list for releases, and she was number 5... At around 6pm, they lined people up, but they ran out of releases at number 4... That night, after the show, the boys went off to do their thing, and Amy and I polished off a whole bottle of chocolate vodka! Around 2am, the boys came by, and we partied some more. When they finally left, it was around 4am, and we got about 4 hours sleep... Amy had to get up to go to the chimpanzee sanctuary with Bruce and Deb, with a horrible hangover. Me, I got up and worked, then took a nap. I almost didn't get to sleep because I was worried about getting to the venue to put my name on the release list. So I woke up, got ready and to the venue around 4pm, and walked up to the box office, and they had just released the second row! So I bought 4 tickets, had the woman who came after me buy me two more, and so Amy, Bruce, Mariann, Randall and Lorcan and I all got to sit in the second row for the last show on the tour!

Randall's friend from Texas, Paul, got my old ticket in the first box on the second level, so he was pleased. At Randall's prompting, during Glen's set, he yelled out "Coffee To Go", which was a bit Glen used to do with The Frames. Glen said, "I'm impressed..." Then, during one his version of a Van Halen song, he looked at Randall and Lorcan, and kind of gave a devilish grin, and then broke into that song... Ed started telling a story about a kid in Ireland who sat down to chat with him, and he had this great black corduroy jacket... Randall and Lorcan whispered "That's Dave", meaning the infamous Dave Donovan, the one who turned us on to The Frames and Glen because Glen is his cousin (almost brother, since Glen's ma raised Dave)... anyway, Ed goes on to say that Dave gave him the jacket, insisted he take it, when Ed admired it. But what Ed just found out was, that the jacket Dave gave him was actually Glen's! Ed said he still has the jacket, and someone in the audience yelled, "Give it back to Glen!" Hilarious.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Cornwall, UK July 2011

Another business trip, this time in Coventry, so I decided to recover from jetlag in Cornwall. Went there a few years ago with Val, and discovered this incredible stone circle there I've been wanting to go back to ever since. One of my business colleagues also lives in Cornwall, so after spending the night near Heathrow, I drove out to Falmouth to meet him for lunch.

Then I went to visit the stone circle... Boscawen -un. There is a tiny place to pull over off the road, then through the sheep gate, and about 1/4 mile down the path is the circle.

Next I went to the tip of Cornwall, and headed North along the coast and stopped at Sennen Cove, just gorgeous!

Next stop was St. Just, and I ate at this little pub...

Then I set off to find the Men-an-Tol... came across a tomb by the road...

I had to park and then hike about 2 miles to get to the site, down a long dirt road with no signs or anything indicating it was the right direction... finally found some locals who told me I was going in the right direction.

Drove on and was going to go to St. Ives, but it's a ritzy resort, and the traffic going in was crazy, so I decided to skip it... I like the south coast, Penzance, Marazion, etc and small towns more than the established resorts.

View of St. Michael's Mount and Marazion... This is an island at high tide, with a walkway over to it during low tide...

So back to Penzance... The view outside my window was of a pub with an interesting statue on the roof...
Next day, drove up to Coventry...