“Smoke, Rain & Don’t Mention The War” One morning’s observation from Dad:
“Umm…maybe don’t wear the blue shorts & tights combo again on stage.” He said, tentatively.
“I didn’t wear that on stage.” I replied, slightly tight lipped.
“You did. During sound-check. Remember, we were testing the video for the gig? I have the rushes.” He said, tension mounting.
“Oh. Right. OK. Why? Fat Legs?” I slightly spat, fixed smile growing wider.
“No, no.” he said, diplomatically. “Just more sort of…well, ‘plenty of glue applied but not enough material on top’ sort of thing.”
“Yeah. He replied, not reading my dangerous tone. “You looked a little………’Reeperbahn.”
“I can show you if you like?”
“No, no, no, it’s fine.” I shrieked, still smiling while slamming closest door clean off its hinges. “Consider that look gone.
” It’s a very surreal dynamic, being on tour with your Dad. Observations like the one above aren’t always welcome, but if your Dad can’t tell you etc etc, ad infinitum.
The last blog I checked, Dad mentioned catching me smoking after a gig. This is a major point of contention for him – and rightly so, I’m a singer – you wouldn’t catch a professional athlete slashing their own legs right before running at the Olympics, so I have no excuse. All I can say is I’m a pathetic loser who is at the mercy of this wretched drug and, despite being hypnotised twice, and reading Alan Carr’s book thrice, is still unable to knock these nicotine buggers out completely. Harumph.
As we’ve been cruising through these last 4 gigs on our own, I’ve been struck by memories of when we first came out here tour, and other father daughter clashes arose.
On our first trip, we had to share a hotel room for 2 weeks. I love my Dad very much, but I don’t like sharing a room with him. People need their own space on tour, so room sharing is just a ‘no no’ for us. For me, it’s because he snores. And then I feel awful for HARUMPH’ing out loud and waking him up as he apologises half asleep and then feels anxious about dropping off again in case he snores again. This does not for a peaceful night make; for anybody. And I know he feels exactly the same way about sharing with me. All my hair products, fake tan applications, and the odd 3am ciggie out the window, leave any room I’m in smelling like a wet dog eating digestive biscuits who has just had a fag out the window while blow drying – it’s not fair and, understandably, Dad hates it. So I’m very happy that so far we’ve all had our own rooms on this tour, where we can each carry out our individual nocturnal routines in peace.
As I checked into the hotel in Neuestadt yesterday, I realised I was in exactly the same room 2 years before, only that time Dad and I were sharing because the hotel was so full. This room was the scene of more than one scary scene back in the initial days of being in a place I didn’t know well, and the memories are haunting me temporarily as I look around the 4 walls.Fortunately, they serve the most amazing wine here so it’s not long before I’ve forgotten them completely, and I settle into what turned out to be a magnificent evening full of old friends and a wonderful evening full of giggles and tra la la’s.
Driving to our final gig tonight in the pouring rain that has chased us all around Germany over the last 3 weeks.
Dad and I have started to have out of body experiences and patience levels for all have dwindled to a shockingly low tide mark.I’m exceptionally snippy and oversensitive, and Dad having descended into a slightly shriller version of his former self, now seems to be channeling John Cleese.
Knocks on the door that were previously met with a fast opening and a smile, are now answered with cries of “DO YOU WANT SOMETHING?” or “For crying out loud – it’s OPEN just come in – what, what is it?” Breakfasts are eaten alone in silence in front of iPads, and wo betide the next German who LOLs and tells Dad we brought our ‘London weather’ with us;
“I’m killing the next one who says it.” He said, completely serious. “I’ve had enough. This rain is German.” I’ve had a few moments where I have completely forgotten where I am midway through a set, and am only brought back in the room by the sound of people clapping at the end of a song.
“Oh, shit, did I finish another one?”……..I seemed to say.
Home straight, baby. I’m coming home tomorrow