MONDAY AND TUESDAY, JUNE 20TH – 21ST, 2011 – NASHVILLE TO UNTERMEITINGEN, GERMANY:
Has been nice to have a few weeks “off” from international travel but filled most of my weekends with trips to DC, California and Texas. Today I left for Germany for the first of many events this Summer. I’ve decided not to stay over there all Summer as I have in the past but will be flying back and forth every week. We’ll see how that goes!
Woke up to the news that there is “weather” in Chicago and the Midwest this morning. I was supposed to depart Nashville this afternoon to fly to Chicago and meet Lorrie Morgan and her group who were flying in from Green Bay. My travel agent kept checking the weather and finally at around noon, we got the report that both flights were on time and the weather had moved out. I was pretty stressed by the time I left my house and as I started through security at the airport, realized I had left my computer at home! Disaster! But fortunately I had enough time to go through security, have Penny deliver it to me curbside and then go back through security. What I didn’t have time for was food. Had planned to eat lunch after I arrived at the airport since I didn’t have time before I left. Going through security twice was a pain though. Every time I go through, they pick me out of the line to go through the one that does the full body scan and someone in another room is looking at you naked. It takes about 4 times as long as going through the regular scanner. When the same guy working security picked me to go through it the second time, I reminded him that I had just been through it 10 minutes ago. He did NOT care. Told me to go through it again. Then the fancy scanner broke down and I got to go through the other one. J
Flight to Chicago left on time and we were in clouds the entire trip so it was very bumpy…my favorite flight…NOT! It finally cleared up as we were landing. Once we were on the ground, I was greeted with emails and voice mail messages from my travel agent and Lorrie’s road manager saying their flight out of Green Bay was delayed and they would miss their connection to Munich. They were trying to re-book on an 8:50 pm flight out of Chicago and worse case if everyone couldn’t get on that one, they would try for a 10 pm departure. Lorrie performs tomorrow so it’s going to be a rush from the Munich airport to Untermeitingen an hour away. I don’t like having the entertainer fly in the same day they perform but nothing that could be done about it since Lorrie had a performance yesterday.
I wasn’t able to change my flight so that I could wait for Lorrie’s group, so now we have to figure out the various “pick-up” times for everyone tomorrow.
Our flight boarded on time and business class is full. Last word from Lorrie’s group is everyone but Lorrie and one other person had cleared for the 8:50 pm flight. Pretty important that Lorrie clear for that flight, huh? We taxied out for an on-time takeoff only to sit for an hour while they “fixed one of the radios” that wasn’t working!
So finally at 7:30 pm, I ate some nuts! Good thing I had that protein shake this morning at 9 am. Today is my sister’s birthday. She passed away from cancer when she was 53. She would have been 69 years old today. Hard to believe she’s been gone that long.
Typical of United Airlines, NONE of the movies playing were the ones listed in the program. I wanted to watch one that was set in Berlin because I’ll be spending a week there with Howard and David Bellamy when they record in July. Of course, it wasn’t on at all. The one I tried to watch was so bad, I didn’t finish it. I did sleep … about 3 hours.
When I landed in Munich, I received the message that Lorrie’s group missed their flight out of Chicago. The airline put them on a British Airways flight via London, arriving Munich at 3:40 pm. They had a really short layover in London and I was worried about them making that connection. I didn’t want the buyer to have to come into Munich twice to pick me up so I went across the street to a hotel where I’ve stayed before with Charlie Daniels. Talked them into giving me a “Day Rate” of “only” 150 Euros. Their regular rate is about 300-350 Euros. I was able to shower and answer a lot of emails while I waited for the group to arrive.
Had a text from Jeff, the tour manager, saying they made the connection and were leaving on time. WHEW! He was worried about the bags making it though. When they landed, they were missing 10 bags….including ALL their show equipment. Fortunately, I had foreseen something like this happening because of their short connection time on the original flight through Chicago. Their drummer knows the opening act well, so I had him contact him for “back up gear”. Plus Bill (Club Owner) is always “on top of it” and he had prepared as well.
We did wait after they arrived for the next BA flight from London to arrive. Six more bags came in, but no show gear. Hopefully it will come in tonight and be delivered to the hotel for the show tomorrow. One of the missing pieces was their ear monitors so they had to use wedges. The opening act told me it sounded as good or better than any act he’d ever heard perform there. Nice compliment since they were “band-aiding” everything.
Got everyone checked into the hotel and ordered Lorrie some food from the club so she could eat and maybe sleep for a few minutes. The guys went over for sound check and then ate dinner at the club. By the way, the hotel had my “fan” that I always leave here but they put it in someone else’s room. Bill was able to get them to retrieve it for me. It isn’t real hot yet, but will be warm enough during the day to need it.
The attendance was light at the club….first time I have brought an act who didn’t sell out! But, this time it wasn’t because of the entertainer. There were a couple of huge rock concerts taking place a half hour from here that were a really big conflict. Tomorrow night’s show is sold out.
Lorrie was in a really great mood. I have not worked with her before, so I was a little concerned. After all the flight delays and extra travel time, she had every right to not be too happy. She was just the opposite. Absolutely a sweetheart. And, man can she sing and has so many hits that the audience remembered. The entire group is great and it’s going to be fun touring with them. Good thing because I have another tour with them in August to Sweden and Denmark.
I helped with the merch sales after the show. It was fairly quick because of the size of the audience…but that was good because they need to get some rest. I think the German beer might have been calling the guys much louder than their beds after the show though. Be interesting to see how many people show up for the trip to Ausburg tomorrow. I AM going to shop, shop, shop. Good news is…Lorrie is a shopper, too.
Think I’ll go to bed now. It’s 3 am!
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22ND – UNTERMEITINGEN, GERMANY:
Had a great run this morning. About 50 degrees and NO humidity. Wonderful. I will reluctantly admit that I have less energy at the beginning of my runs when I only get 3-4 hours sleep though. I’m sure it has nothing to do with age. Forgot to mention that I had a migraine as I was checking the group into the hotel….my 3rd in less than a week. So, I’m going to blame my slower start time on that instead of old age. J
I love the sound of the fighter jets taking off and landing outside my window. Makes me feel like I’m on one of the tours for the military.
Jeff and I checked on the missing pieces at 2:30 am this morning. They are not even showing up in the system! If they don’t arrive before we depart to Switzerland tomorrow, then they probably won’t have them the entire trip. Not good.
The bathroom has a dispenser beside the sink and one in the shower stall that has cleanser for “body and hair”. No way I’d wash my hair with it. But, anyway, there is no bar of soap or any other amenities in the room. I got into the shower only to find that the dispenser was empty. Pretty frustrating. I had to get out and try to squeeze enough soap into a glass and take it into the shower.
We almost left on time for the trip to Augsburg. That’s the city where I stayed with the Bellamys last March. I love the shopping there. I “thought” that was what we were going to do today. But they all wanted to sightsee and I felt too guilty to leave the group. We went to a huge cathedral that is 1,000 years old. I saw it when I was jogging last March but didn’t go inside. It is amazing. Lorrie really enjoyed seeing that. We wandered around the “square” and had a bratwurst for lunch. I never got in any shopping but that’s okay. I’m coming back here on Sunday and Monday. J
Bill called the airline to check on the missing pieces and also called the hotel. Supposedly, everything was being delivered while we were out. When we got back to the hotel at 2:30 pm, nothing had arrived but was scheduled to be there at 4 pm. Believe it or not, everything showed up! It was all equipment we needed for the shows except for one personal bag of clothes that belonged to Jeff.
I answered emails until time for sound check and then walked over to the club. Had dinner with the guys and back answering more emails. Show time is 9:30 pm again tonight. We depart the hotel for Switzerland at 10 am tomorrow morning. Really good timing because they are shutting off the power at the hotel at 10 am to “fix” a problem!
When I walked back from dinner at the club, I couldn’t believe the sky. Huge black clouds with the “funnel shapes” hanging down, seeming to almost touch the ground. In America, we would have been running for the underground cover. But they don’t have tornados here. I took a photo of it because it was so spectacular.
Tonight the club was sold out and it was a great crowd….true Lorrie Morgan fans. She looked stunning and did another fantastic performance. Signed autographs for about an hour and I was back at the hotel by 12:30 am. It’s 1:30 am now and I need to get some sleep. We leave for Interlaken at 10 am tomorrow and the timing could not be any better. The hotel is shutting off the power at 10 am to fix a problem.