POPMART Leg 5: 1998, Australia, Japan, South Africa

Jul
05
2005

Katowice Slaski Stadium.

05 July 2005
Katowice Slaski Stadium.
After the past couple of shows it felt like a great luxury to be at the gig so early. I went in for lunch and spent the afternoon working on the forthcoming video shoot. It was another gorgeous day and the stadium is in the middle of a very big park which has its own zoo, lakes and a chair-lift cable car system. By about 4pm we couldnt resist the temptation any longer and so went out to have a go on the chair lift. It makes a circuit of the park in three sections and takes about 45 minutes all up. The trip was unexpectedly blissful, largely because it was so quiet up there. Swinging gently as we were carried through the trees in the sunshine. Talk about chill out - we should have one of these at every gig to calm everybody down.

By the time we got back to earth the band had arrived and the sky was beginning to cloud over. By the time The Magic Numbers were on stage the weather was looking positively threatening and The Killers got severely drenched as the heavens opened. What a drag. During the between-bands changeover the rain just came down, it was torrential. Out in the crowd umbrellas appeared and creative uses for rubbish bags were being demonstrated all over the venue. It was looking grim for U2, but amazingly the storm passed and we got away with the rest of the night being, if not dry at least free of further precipitation.

It was a great gig, entirely due to the audience being so up for it. The best moment was going into New Years Day where the audience, entirely of their own volition, produced flags and scarves. Everyone on the floor of the stadium had red, everyone in the grandstands had white, so the whole stadium turned into a huge Polish flag. I have never seen an audience do anything like it before - getting it together to surprise and delight us. I think my mouth must have fallen open. Who organized this? The fact that it was premeditated made it all the more extraordinary; an audience consciously plotting to put on a show for the performers. It was absolutely wonderful, humbling, thrilling all at the same time. A great, great crowd, and a unique atmosphere.

Hotel. Few drinks. Bed. Stupidly late.
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Vertigo Tour