SUNDAY, JULY 31ST – NORWAY TO SWEDEN: How did that happen??? Last day of July???
So, got my 3 hours of sleep. I can just copy/paste that and start with it every report it seems this trip. Showered and had time for yogurt before meeting Frank and the van for the trip to the airport. Even though it was only me in the van, there was no way to sleep. They even gave me a full size pillow and blanket. The back of the van with the 4 seats across was too “bumpy” on those Norwegian roads and the other seats were 2 together and 1 across the aisle. Was a long, miserable 4 hour drive. I picked up my bag from storage and “re-packed” a few things to distribute the weight. Then got checked in and walked over to the Radisson. Made sure everything was set up and ready for Billy Ray and his group to stay there tonight.
I had time to eat a salad and go into the SAS Lounge to check email. The Bellamys’ flight landed on time and I met them at the gate. The plane didn’t have a “business class” ….just Economy Extra. But it was a very short flight. All out bags made it but my suitcase was crushed on one side. Of course it’s a brand new Rimowa ($600!) that is supposed to be indestructible. Only the 2nd trip with it. Guess I’ll have to send it back. L
Then, we had the 4 hour bus ride from Stockholm to Rattvik – this time in a tour bus. The seats reclined about ½ inch! Again, a miserable trip but we made it. I’ve stayed at the hotel a couple of times with other entertainers and it’s nice…nothing fancy. View is fantastic though.
We had pre-ordered dinner and ate at 10 pm when we arrived. Really good food, too. So nice to be back with the Bellamy Brothers and “in my comfort zone”. LOL.
After dinner, we all tried to log on to the internet and couldn’t get on. I went to the front desk to try and get it fixed but they had closed! Fortunately, the restaurant was still open and the girl in there helped me. Receptionist had told us password was nine “9’s” but is was actually 10 “9’s”. So, all is good. We don’t have to move hotels. J
Susan came by to give me a “brace” for my foot but it’s an ankle brace and didn’t work. I’m going to see my doctor this week. Think it might be a stress fracture. L
But, now, I’m going to “re-pack” and hopefully get more than 3 hours sleep. It’s “Classic Car Week” here and you should see the cars! And the venue is the most beautiful of all the ones I’ve played. Go to www.dalhalla.com and check it out! This is the one where it poured rain a few years ago with Dwight Yoakam. The venue gave everyone a rain slicker when they walked in. Not one person left even tough it poured the entire performance. The slickers were either a bright red, green or yellow. I remember looking out at the audience and thinking it reminded me of M&M’s.
MONDAY, AUGUST 1ST, PERFORMANCE AT DALHALLA, SWEDEN:
Still can’t exercise other than arms. Getting really tired of this. Have an appointment with my doctor the day I get back. Have a feeling it’s definitely a stress fracture from what I’m reading on the internet. L
When I showered, I had a surprise. Evidently when they crushed my suitcase, it was with something really heavy. A little hard plastic spray bottle was crushed flat and my can of hair spray had a dent in it the size of my fist. But the worse part is my travel printer. I have had it 3 years and it has flown around the world with me – in my soft duffle bag. So, I put it in the indestructible suitcase this time – and they destroyed it. Literally –in pieces. It was wrapped in bubble wrap and then inside two bubble padded envelopes and then wrapped in a towel and they still destroyed it. I’m filing a claim tomorrow when we go to the airport!!!!
Went over to the venue with the boys and it is just as beautiful as ever. This is the first time it hasn’t been raining for my concerts here. Weather is fantastic. We saw all the classic cars on our drive out. I swear there can’t be any left in the U.S. There are 35,000 participants in this town this week! The corvette club is up at our hotel and has some beautys parked out front. The exhaust from some of them is horrible though. They have built a “boat” (like a pirate ship) in the lake and some grass huts out back. They hold a children’s musical there. The promoter told me I could take the row boat out to look at it but I never had the time. They had lunch backstage for us and the guys said it’s the best food of the trip. The equipment, staging, production, technicians – everything is first class. Some happy guys. First I get everyone a fan in their rooms and now this….I’m feeling some love! J
I left the guys and came back to the hotel to pick up Susan and go to the drugstore. Howard was standing out front and he and Jenny asked for a ride into town so they could eat lunch. The hotel had NOTHING! We stopped by the drugstore to by Vectavir – a miracle cream for cold sores. I gave my tube to Tanya’s daughter in Norway. I rarely use it but keep it for family and friends. The drugstore only had 3 tubes so we bought all those. I’ll be back in Sweden in two weeks and will pick up some more. This little town only has one drug store! Susan, Howard and Jennifer remembered it from when we walked around here when we played Leksand a few years ago. Howard and Jenny went to the same restaurant for lunch. Susan got David some take-way Thai food that he said was good, too.
Worked until dinner at 5:30 pm – really early – but it takes forever to get served! We didn’t get out of there until 2 hours later. And the portions are so small, you wonder what is taking so long? But, the food was really good. Not as good as what we had at the venue though.
The hotel only has one iron and ironing board, so everyone was having to pass it around. Guys left to go over at 8 pm and I leave with the Bellamys at 8:45 pm. We won’t get back here until after midnight and have to leave at 3:30 am for the 4 hour bus ride to the airport.
We arrived at the venue right on time and Kjell and his wife and friends from Furuvik were there to say hello. Bellamys took the stage right on time and it was an awesome audience in such a fantastic setting. I walked up to the very top to find Susan and she had disappeared. I sent her a text but cell service is intermittent and she didn’t get it. I didn’t find her until the show was almost over!
At the end, these two little ladies dressed in traditional Swedish attired were to go on stage and present flowers to the Bellamys. The last song was “Red Neck Girl” and they ladies were standing in front of me waiting for the song to end. Unfortunately, there is a “false ending” to the song. Before I could grab them, the little ole ladies had scooted across the stage right in the middle of the song. The Bellamys had to keep singing and try to take the flowers from them at the same time. It was pretty funny. When David came off, he said, “Who were those 2 little Grandmas with flowers? That was really cool”! LOL
One of our other promoters came by after the show to say hello but we had to leave immediately for the hotel because of our 3:30 am departure time. Bellamys had already gotten on the bus when he showed up J
Going to be a short night AGAIN.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 2ND – SWEDEN TO NASHVILLE, WE HOPE!
Ouch. Slept one hour and wish I had just stayed up. Sleeping on the bus is miserable. Like very small coach airplane seats. L We left the hotel at 3:30 am and arrived at the airport at around 7:15 am. I had to check in at a totally different area from the Bellamys and planned to meet up with them at the gate area. Once I got through security, found out my gate was as far from theirs as possible. Just not possible to limp that far on my cripple foot!
I stopped and bought some of their fantastic chocolate on my way to the SAS lounge. Had about 8 cups of coffee once I got into the lounge. LOL. Sitting here writing thank you notes because my flight is delayed by 1 ½ hours. If it is delayed any more, I’ll miss my connection to Nashville. L
Stopped and purchased some of that great hand-made Swedish chocolate. Have to decide who is “deserving” of it. By the way, ‘Mister I will not eat it if you bring it to me’ ate about 5 boxes of the Swiss chocolate I brought home. J
Flight from Stockholm to Newark was on an SAS plane and the flight attendants had no personality. They weren’t nice or friendly or anything! Just “there”. I watched a few minute of the movie “Cars” and then slept almost the entire flight. Woke up and finished watching the movie and then it was time to land. We were late but not so late that I thought I’d miss the connection. My bags made it and I hurried to the shuttle but to take me to the “A” gates for my Nashville flight. When we arrived at the gate, I didn’t see Nashville listed. Went to check the board and while we were driving over, the gate had been changed to a “C” gate – exactly where I had just come from! Wouldn’t be a problem if I weren’t “limping” along! Still had time to go into the Lounge and download my email.
Flight to Nashville was also full and arrived on time. No turbulence on either flight today. J Home with my “babies” now. Have to go back to Denmark and Sweden in one week.