'The Smell of The Stables...'
Seville. Show day.
It€™s funny, after such a relaxing day off yesterday everyone is in fine form, but suddenly the smell of the stables is very much in the air (by which I don€™t mean a reference to the San Sebastian stadium, but that the end of the tour and the prospect of going home seems very real all of a sudden.) Rather abruptly it dawns on everyone that in one more week, two more cities, we all get a break. That always puts a spring in your step.
Shows in this part of the world tend to start late. U2€™s onstage time in Spain and Portugal is 9.45pm, with the show wrapping up at midnight. I had some guests €“ a childhood family friend and her family, now resident in this part of the world. We€™d arranged to meet outside at seven o€™clock though they€™d texted to warn they were stuck in traffic. It is about this time of night, once the doors are open, that cellphone networks tend to crash and burn with 60,000 people trying to communicate with each other or the outside world. Consequently, my phone went south, but having arranged the rendezvous I knew that we could at least do it the old fashioned way €“ go to the pre-arranged spot and wait. This gave me the best part of an hour to sit and watch the audience arriving, in ones and twos or large groups but all excited and ramping up for a great night. In this part of the world the audience really does come to be part of a communal event, rather than just to come and €œsee a show€. A great show it was too, absolutely packed to the rafters and such a loud audience. These people I had watched arriving, all excited, did not disappoint. I think we€™ll miss them...
I€™m travelling with the crew again tonight, on a comparatively short seven-hour bus ride to Coimbra in Portugal. There€™s a charter plane from Coimbra to Rome, making this is the final bus journey of this leg, so I thought I€™d make the most of it.