SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 17TH – TRAVEL DAY FROM HAUGESUND TO DRAMMEN, NORWAY:
I definitely opted for the gym today even though it was “less than adequate”! And, it was still locked when I got there at 8 am. It was supposed to open at 7 am. I had to go to the front desk and have them unlock it. Was at least able to work all the muscle groups and felt much better afterwards.
Had breakfast with some of the guys, showered, worked and met everyone in the lobby at 12:30 pm. I did notice when I looked out my window that there was a building right across the street that housed an awesome gym!
We had about a 15 minute drive to the airport and was able to check in all our bags on the kiosks, except for one piece of excess. The nice lady at the counter did not charge us for that piece. It’s a very small airport – our gate was #3! At least it wasn’t one of the small jets. It was similar to a Southwest Airlines jet. The flight was only 50 minutes.
We landed and our bags and equipment came into the “new” part of the Oslo Airport. They have been working on it for years and years. It’s really nice.
“Tom” – our driver – met us with a large tour bus…something we were not expecting but very appreciative of. We had been driving for about 10 minutes when Howard spotted a “Marche”! That’s our favorite restaurant and for years they were only available in Germany. Then Switzerland got a few and now I guess they are in Norway.
We had been driving for about 20 minutes when there was this loud “explosion” and the bus rocked sideways. We all thought we hit something. The cars behind us slowed down and stayed way back behind us and there was smoke coming from beneath the bus. When the driver could finally pull over, he said we blew a tire. That’s a first for me! He was still able to drive the bus and took it to his company which was nearby. We switched out buses and continued on our way.
Arrived the hotel a little after 6 pm and the hotel is next door to the theatre where they are performing. We played this theatre a couple of years ago and I remember asking why we didn’t stay at this hotel then because they had us at one that was quite a long walk from the theatre.
Got everyone checked in and Howard, David, Wally and I went to dinner. The desk clerk recommended a restaurant on the river. It looked really nice but when they brought the menu, there was nothing I wanted to eat. The salmon was smoked and that would have been my first choice. The rest of the fish was “white fish” and after getting sick the last two times I ate white fish, I was not going to try it. The other options were duck and reindeer. They did have a steak on the menu and that’s what I ordered. It turned out to be very good by Norwegian standards. 😊
We were back at the hotel before 8 pm and I got a lot of work done tonight. We have to be at the venue by 1 pm tomorrow and show time is 7 pm. Going to call it a day for now so I can get up early and try to get in a “jog” down by the river.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 18TH – LAST PERFORMANCE IN NORWAY:
I got in a fantastic jog along the waterfront in absolutely perfect weather! Wish we didn’t have to leave so early tomorrow as I would try to get in another jog.
Spent the rest of the morning working and then walked over to the venue with the guys for sound check at 2 pm today. I was afraid they would need 3 hours for this process since they were using different equipment from what we had the past 4 shows. However, they finished up in 2 hours. Most of them are going to eat dinner at the hotel before the show but a few of us are going to wait and eat after the performance.
Kjell and Jan are supposed to arrive at around 6 pm for the concert today. This is the only performance where ticket sales have been slow. We sold out here 2 years ago and I think the problem is the fact that it is being held on a Monday night!
It’s a beautiful “old” theatre that looks like an “Opera House”. I walked over with Howard and David at 6:30 pm and Kjell and Jan were waiting backstage for us. The shows started at exactly 7:00 pm and they performed for 90 minutes. Again, had a great “last show” in Norway and were called back for 3 encores with a standing ovation! Great way to end the Norway part of our tour.
Kjell and Jan came over and sat in the hotel restaurant with us for a while. It was nice to “catch” up with them and have a little “down” time. Kjell is going to attend the Country Gold festival in Japan this year so I’ll see him there.
We depart the hotel at 7:45 am tomorrow so it means I have to get up at around 5:00 am. Going to call it a night very soon now as it is almost 11 pm.