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Archive for October, 2011

Falling for Holland One Pretty Girl at a time

I slept all the way from the Hook of Holland Ferry to Utrecht and woke up to the prettiest little place ever.   99% of the people in Holland are strikingly beautiful, but Utrecht is a university town so I think our necks were hurting from checking people out by the time we got to our destination.

I don’t know how people feel about me using their names in my blog, so for the moment we will call our host Andy (surely not the most Dutch name I can think of…). Andy is a bass guitar player who met our Australian friend in South America last year and agreed to let the three of us live on his floor for a few days.  Now it is already amazing that someone would take in 3 house guests in a modest flat, but to take in 3 house guests that you haven’t met and let them all sleep in your room with all their gear… you must be getting the picture of why we call him our ‘tour angel’.  We needed one too because when we went to unpack, our new car battery (the one we bought for busking) fell to the ground and broke… it hadn’t even been used yet.

We hit the ground running in Utrecht and promptly went into town to scope some gigs and talk to the cops about busking.  In true Dutch fashion, the cops were supper helpful and gave us the address to go and get our licences.  We scoped out location, talked to venues about gigs, got our licences and a new car battery and played an open jam night- a very productive day.  By the end of it we were all completely in love with Utrecht and every single thing about it.

Driving to the Hook of Holland

So I would have liked to keep this up when on the JJ Symon vs. Kit & Con tour- but it was pretty nuts! So I will do a memoir more than a blog (but sometimes stories are betterafter a bit of reflection anyway).

My drummer had gone on this 10-day bus trip around Europe prior to the tour.  So by the time we picked him up in our estate car aka ‘the panther’ he was pretty worn out.  This ended up being a supper good thing because he had sworn off alcohol and we suddenly had a sober driver for after gigs!  We loaded up the car to an inch of its life (although it was still able to reach some pretty impressive speeds thanks to Germany’s no speed limits… more on that later).  Anyway, being the smallest of the three- I managed to get the back seat most of the time… next to the kick drum/bass and all our bags.  And off we went to the hook of Holland to catch the ferry from England to the Netherlands.

The ferry ride was pretty impressive- and I recommend it for anyone who takes a car from England to Europe.  We got the night ferry so we had a cabin which even had a shower (which is good because I learned the full extent of unpleasant smells traveling with 2 boys for 3 weeks!).  The food is expensive though- so I got the first of many tour dinners which consisted of
instant soup and a pack a chips.  For anyone who is a foodie- don’t go on tour! And especially don’t go on tour with boys!

8 hours and a very restful sleep later, we were driving off the ferry to meet up with a friend of a friend who thankfully agreed to let 3 musos camp out in his room- this stranger turned out to be a little tour angel but you will hear about that soon no doubt.