WEDNESDAY-THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 2-3, 2005
Today we departed the U.S. to Switzerland. I am traveling with Jolie Edwards and her band. I flew out of Nashville on United and met up with them at Dulles in D.C. Same little jet that I took a couple of weeks ago. Hate it! It was overcast, raining and BUMPY departing Nashville. Had about a 2 hour layover in Dulles and then flew to Zurich. Realized I was in a bulkhead seat – which I hate. Fortunately, the airplane was only half-full, so I was able to move to another row. Easy flight except I slept for a couple of hours and dreamed about the airplane crashing the entire time. For some reason, I have this recurring dream but instead of crashing, the huge airplane just goes down and we’re traveling along the interstate in the airplane – dodging power lines, etc. Dream could have been caused this time because a small plane crashed in the Newark the morning I departed.
Checked into the hotel and the main building (Sheraton) is under renovation for the next two years. We’re in the “Guesthouse” section which isn’t nearly as nice. They do have wireless internet but it didn’t work from my room on the 3rd floor. They moved me to the 1st floor and assured me it would work. Not! So, I have to take my laptop down to the lobby for it to connect. Spending most of my time running up and down the stairs with the laptop! Should be interesting at 2 am when I’m still working. The front desk staff is going to love me.
Everyone was going to sleep for a couple of hours (except me) and now we’re going to take the train into Zurich to have lunch and look around. One of the musicians has a birthday today.
We took the train downtown because the shuttle that they usually have is not operating while the main hotel is closed. Forgot to ask the front desk how to buy the train tickets, so that turned out to be quite an experience. I finally purchased 7 tickets to “somewhere in Zurich” and hoped for the best. We managed to get on the train going in the right direction and actually ended up where we wanted to go. Found a great little “pizzeria” and had pizza for the birthday celebration. Then we split up to “shop”. GREAT sales taking place all over town. If I could purchase all the shoes/boots I wanted, I would have at least 5 more suitcases to check. Why don’t we have great shoes like this in America?
Managed to take the right train back to the hotel. I ran down to the lobby and checked email; ran back up to the room to answer all of it; then back downstairs to send it. Getting my workout just trying to connect to the internet.
Had dinner at the venue where Jolie will be performing. One of the musicians admitted to being “attacked” by the shower this afternoon. It’s one of those “hand held” wands and there is a LOT of water pressure. The wand wasn’t completely in place and when he turned on the shower, it flew off and attacked him plus soaked the entire bathroom. He’s rooming with another musician who was trying to sleep. He admitted that he was laughing so hard and trying to grab the wand that his roommate heard the noise and was afraid to even ask what was going on in the bathroom.
Had a great dinner and I’ve managed to stay within my “point range” for Weight Watchers. Have lost 5.6 pounds in just 3 weeks and don’t want to blow it this week! May try to get up and job tomorrow morning depending upon the temperature. The snow has stopped and probably won’t start again until Saturday.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 4TH – DAY 4:
It was not fun watching everyone else eat apple strudel with ice cream while I had a bowl of fruit. The fruit had a scoop of ice cream and whipped cream on top, but I gave that to one of the musicians. Have to weigh in on Monday night and this sacrifice had sure better be worth it. J
Miserable night. No one could figure out how to regular the heat in their rooms. I don’t even have a control. I assume mine is regulated by the front desk. I was freezing when I went to bed at 1 am. There’s a huge down comforter and down pillows (of course, this is Europe!) on the bed. No sheet other than the one you lay on. Laid down and WHOOSH the down pillow flattened to a pillow case. Grabbed the other pillow and added it and double WHOOSH…two pillow cases only this time there’s a mound of down around both sides of my head! Spent about 10 minutes trying to fold and roll and mold the pillow/pillows into some shape where my head was elevated for more than 1/8 of an inch. No luck. Finally got up and made a “coat sandwich” with the pillows – pillow on bottom, my coat in the middle, pillow on top. Not great, but better than nothing. Snuggled down under the comforter with dreams of warming up. Wasn’t disappointed. It was too hot. One arm out. Two arms out. One foot out. Both feet out and now I just have a mound of down wrapped around my waist. Finally threw the entire comforter off and by this time it’s 2:15 am.
Woke up at a few minutes after 3:00 absolutely frozen. Had a headache from where the zipper of my coat had made itself known through the pillow. My feet were so cold, I got up and went into the bathroom to warm them with the hair dryer. Back to bed and snuggled under the down comforter. Read the previous paragraph again but add a couple of hours to the time! I have a down comforter at home but I certainly don’t have these hot/cold issues. Finally got up at 6 am and worked out with “rubber bands” in my room. Went out into the hall to do lunges and squats. Four of Jolie’s musicians are on my hall and I was hoping no one would open the door and look out and see me “lunging” up and down the hall. Then I remembered that it’s not noon yet and no chance of them being awake yet.
Going into town for a couple of hours this morning to shop. Jolie has an interview at 3 pm and then we go to the venue for sound check and show. Won’t be back until at least 1:00 am.
Went into a store yesterday and the song on the radio was some woman belting out, “F…You, F…You” over and over again and then “F…You A…H; F…You A..H….” over and over. Really creative lyrics. Yep, things are different over here.
Jolie did two interviews and her sound check. Then dinner at the restaurant where the venue is located. I had a very small breakfast, no lunch, and ate all my points at dinner. Not good! Need to eat several small meals each day instead of starving until dinner and then over-eating!
Jolie had a great show and got an encore at the end. My friends from Interlaken were there and it was nice to see them again. The venue is like a “Texas Ballroom” with the guests seated at long tables. There’s a large dance floor and they definitely like to dance. There is also a large area dedicated to the Switzerland Country Music Association.
Got back to the hotel at around 1 am and in bed by 3 am. Ready for the fight with the down comforter!
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 5TH – DAY 4:
Got up early to work out with bands and to go see my friend who is the promoter in Interlaken off to the train station. Then Jolie and I were ready to hit the shops one final time. We found out that there was a train stop MUCH closer to the hotel. The boys weren’t ready to go yet, so we told them we’d meet up with them in town. We had been hiking to the bottom of a very steep hill to catch it. We had to purchase tickets and the machine didn’t like my “Franc”. Took Jolie’s just fine. I was getting stressed and then the train pulled up. I gave up and we jumped on without me purchasing a ticket! About two minutes later, I looked at Jolie and said, “Jolie, we’re going UP the mountain!”. In my panic not to miss the train, we got on the train going the wrong way. We were convinced we would end up in New Mexico or somewhere. When we finally made a stop, we jumped off to check out the train schedules. Found a restaurant and had a cup of coffee and waited for the same train we had just gotten off of to come back DOWN the mountain. When we finally got on, I was convinced the boys would be standing at our stop and see how stupid we had been. But, no sight of them. We finally met up with them in town and they admitted that they had done the same thing – only they stayed on the train and took it all the way to the top of the mountain. Said it was a beautiful ride up. Lots of people going sledding – which would be my worst nightmare after the sled trip I took down the Igor with the Bellamy Brothers several years ago!
Got into town and had lunch at a fantastic little Italian restaurant in the train station. I had pasta with pesto sauce. We only ate about ¼ of it because they gave us so much. Decided to keep the rest and maybe have for dinner if we were going to have the same menu at the restaurant. For the performers, the meals are “free” but you have a very limited selection and it’s the same choices every night. After two nights of eating there, I was pretty much out of options as far as what I could eat and not go over my WW points.
We shopped all day long and went back into the store with the horribly obnoxious music and if you can believe it, heard a song where the lyrics were much, much worse than the day before. AND, there were small children in the store. Got lots of bargains since everyone is now putting all their winter merchandise on sale. Went back to the train station to buy LOTS of chocolate. Jolie had never eaten a truffle and we discovered “truffles de jour”. They are made with very fresh cream and have to be eaten within 3 days of preparation. They are incredible and Jolie was HOOKED! We played by the rules and ate ours in less than 3 seconds. J
Went back to the hotel to change for the show and I had to meet with the promoter. He had mysteriously disappeared the night before and didn’t attend the show. We later learned that he had gotten into an argument with one of the young vendors at the venue about a parking spot. The young guy evidently “”popped” him in the face. The promoter went to the doctor and then to the police to file a report. He said he was not supposed too work for 3 days, so he wasn’t coming to the show that night either.
We went to the restaurant and the menu was the same only this time they offered us an option of eating something from the menu that the guests in our show room were having. They brought us each a small bowl of the most delicious chili I have ever eaten. That was all I had except for two cups of unbelievably strong coffee. We had a super nice waiter named Charly who took care of us all week.
Jolie’s interview showed up in the newspaper on Saturday. Full page spread – color photo and a good review. We had a much better crowd tonight. More energy. They danced the entire show. She sold a lot more merch tonight and got another encore.
Arrived back at the hotel at around 1 am and I gave the pasta I had kept from lunch to the boys. Had to pack and finally got in bed at 2:30 am but could NOT go too sleep. I think it was the darn coffee. I had finally located a wall furnace but the knob would not turn. I would have needed a wrench to twist the darn thing. So, I had another very sleepless night. Finally fell asleep at 4 am but had to get up at 6:30 am.
FEBRUARY 6TH – DAY 5 – SUNDAY, FLYING HOME!
No time to work out this morning. As I was leaving the room, doing my one last panicked “look around, what did I leave?” routine, I noticed a nice fluffy pillow in the closet. My first thought was that it was a regular pillow – not a down pillow – and I was really going to be ticked off after what I’ve gone through trying to maneuver mine. But, punching one finger into it confirmed that it was definitely “down”.
Everyone was on time and checking in at the airport was a breeze. Business class is full but think coach has lots of empty seats. Hope so. The guys didn’t sleep either and are pretty tired. Plane was one hour late leaving. Sounds like I might miss my connection. D.C. is one place I won’t mind getting stuck!
Actually landed early. No problems with out connections and made it back to Nashville early as well. Easy trip to Switzerland.