Thirty Two Great Nights in Europe come to a close in Lisbon, Portugal.
Bono folded himself up and cast himself aside at the beginning of the final show of the European leg of Vertigo 05 last night. Actually it was just a cardboard cut-out version of himself getting the folding treatment, but it was a useful symbol that a long and exhilarating tour through Europe was coming to a close and it was time for a little rest.
'Myself, The Edge, Adam and Larry ... today we became Portuguese,' he explained, referring to their visit to the Presidential Palace earlier in the day to receive the Order of Merit. 'We wanna thank you for making us so welcome and we wanna thank the President for pinning this great badge on our chest.'
Honours are cool of course but, as Larry never fails to point out, this is a band who are not at the end of their career. 'We're just getting started!' added Bono, to wild cheers as Still Haven't Found cracked open the night and Lisbon became the City of Blinding Lights.
'So tonight is the last night of our European tour and this is a good place
to end,' continued Bono. 'Some very beautiful girls,' he noticed, before dedicating Miracle Drug to a children's hospital and recalling the author Christopher Nolan.
'It's about a boy we went to school with who was asleep until a little pill which awakened him and he was able to write beautiful poetry. He wrote a book called Damburst of Dreams. His mother always believed in him, that he was awake.'
It was a hot night at the Alvalade Stadium in Lisbon and the band were not letting up on the energy levels just because a welcome break is ahead. The Portuguese have been waiting a long time for this show and the wait proved worth it.
'It's going to get harder and harder to coexist,' predicted Bono, but that's the spirit of Sunday Bloody Sunday, Love and Peace and Bullet the Blue Sky. 'No more no more' echoed hugely around the stadium, as the night flew by. There's special mention for the man who recorded Miss Sarajevo, at the show tonight, and as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights scrolls up the rear of the stage in gigantic letters, tonight it's in Portuguese - much to the delight of the locals.
'What is going on?' asks a tired but jubilant Bono surveying the chanting of the audience. 'I want to salute the people from Make Poverty History in Portugal. If you want to take out your cell phones and make this place into a Christmas tree..
You can text us
Our time is coming
Our generation has something to do
It has fallen on us to say no to extreme poverty
We can say NO..
We want Portugal to lead and not to follow in the fight against extreme poverty
We believe that this government will do it but only if you tell them to..'
And so, for the last time in Europe in 2005, the stadium is lit up with cellphones, thousands of people join the campaign to make poverty history and One rings out to remind people that what we can achieve together is more than we might ever imagine.
Special thanks for crew members as Yahweh arrives, with accompanying brilliant animations and then, in a neat twist on recent shows, there is no second Vertigo but instead the beautiful '40' closes a beautiful European tour.