19 March 2011
'Full Moon'London. Departure.
So it begins again. I've been up country and would normally have come back to London the night before heading off on tour but I guess I'm getting blase at this stage. Getting up this morning, I worked out that it would be about 36 hours before I arrived at my hotel in Santiago, a fact that was more than a little hard to take on board. It was a beautiful morning, the first here after three weeks of relentless greyness. The sun shone in cold blue skies, with every surface wet from melted frost as I got on the train.
London was a bit of a run around, not least because I hadn't even started packing. Digging out summer wardrobe again felt strange, yo-yoing between Winter and Summer, this being the third round trip to the southern hemisphere in as many months. Managed a haircut then out to Heathrow.
Half the tour was in the BA lounge, as there are a limited selection of routes between Europe and Chile. Once on board, we had a sizable delay as the airport caterers had left a truck in the way of our plane. It took over an hour to locate someone who could move it and I couldn't help but think that in a similar situation at a U2 show, our production team would have had the damn thing gone in minutes (one way or another).
It turns out that Chile is quite a long way from London. I knew this, of course, but there's a certain denial that kicks in when you get on board a twelve-hour flight. Ate, read. Watched True Grit which, to be honest I found a little ho-hum, despite the great performances from the two leads. Slept a while, then woke up with a start and found myself looking at something that at first I had some difficulty processing. Outside the window of the darkened plane cabin, hanging in a black void sky was an outrageously huge full moon. The wildly disorientating thing was that I was looking down on it. The perfect circle of silver was sitting in the sky considerably lower that my eye level, far below the 'horizon' of the aeroplane. Coming out of sleep it was the wildest sight and it seemed to be brighter and clearer than I've ever seen the moon. I was absolutely captivated - who has ever looked down and seen the full moon (OK, apart from those astronaut guys)? It was magical, all the dials spinning, I stared at it for nearly 30 minutes before it faded away.