We all eventually made it to Glasgow, straggling in at various times of the day. Margo and my flight was uneventful, the Toronto contingent (who hooked up with Alan who was coming from Victoria and had been sitting in the Toronto airport for six hours) hustled through Heathrow and caught their connection to Glasgow (just barely), and Jared, who was coming from Boston, suffered through a four hour layover at Heathrow but he eventually straggled in to the hotel as well. All bodies, instruments, fingers and toes accounted for….so far so good. Most spent the rest of the day and night recovering from the unnatural state-of-being that we charmingly call “flying”, wandering the streets of Glasgow like a squad of zombies making sure to look right, then left then right again before crossing any streets.
Glasgow is a big, old industrial city that is trying to re-make itself, trying to become hip and vibrant and modern. To a certain degree the face lift is working, but it is in competition with its neighbouring city Edinburgh which is only sixty miles away and is an internationally renowned city and has kind of cornered all things cultural in this neck of the woods. And then there is London to the south, sucking all of the youthful energy of this island into its great, voracious maw. So Glasgow has its work cut out for it. Alan compared its looks to East Berlin when the wall first came down, with all of its dour neo-classical buildings covered in decades of soot, Pete thought it felt more like Hamilton and I kind of think it has a little bit of North Bay in its gene pool, except that it’s more than a thousand years older. In any case the audience tonight definitely had an “Ontario” feel to it and why shouldn’t it have, we share a bloodline. Extremely quiet and polite, almost reverential at times, and then completely enthusiastic and exuberant at the end of it all. It’s difficult playing in front of that type of audience because there isn’t that exchange of energy that helps make a live show….live. But we recognised what was going on and it was so much fun to play again that we plugged-in to our own energy and had a very good opening night. On the road again.