Okay... I've written up my little travel log up until after the Coventry gig.
This is mostly my travel experiences and only a little James related. Most of my best James Experience is in this post. So, If that's all you want to read about then don't bother reading these. LOL Included in this post are pictures of Coventrys cathedral, St. Marys Guildhall and pictures of fellow fans that I hung out with at one point or another. LOL
Day 1 -
April 23rd Saturday to April 24th Sunday
I was supposed to fly out of Houston Intercontinental at 4:07 PM. So like the good traveler I am, I arrived at the airport at 2 PM in which I asked my sister and mother to just drop me off at the passenger drop off point. I walk up to the ticket counter to check my bags and get my boarding pass to Chicago where I would meet up with my travel companions Spicy and Char. My layover in Chicago would only be about 2 hours and then off the 3 of us would go to Heathrow airport.
My cell phone rings as the ticketing lady is looking me up and it just happened to be American Airlines on the phone. She tells me “Where are you at right now?” I tell her I’m standing at their ticketing counter to check my bags. She says “There are problems getting into Chicago O’Hare today and your flight will be delayed.
Well, I had checked before leaving for the airport and my flight said it was on time. The lady on the phone said to talk to the ticketing agent about the flight delay because it may mess up getting my connection in Chicago.
The ticketing lady said that yes there were no flights going into Chicago O’hare at this time and that my flight would be delayed. If the flight were delayed more than a couple hours, then I would not make my connection. I just stared at her.
She then tells me that the only thing they can do it fly me into Dallas and change planes to fly into London from there. I would get in 2 hours before my friends. I’m like okay, lets do it! She grabs my bags that should be checked and we hoof it through security and to the gate in which I then get cleared to board the plane. I find out as I’m boarding the plane that it is indeed not even flying into Heathrow airport, it’s flying into Gatwick …
I begin to feel nervous. Everyone on the plane is giving me dirty looks and I realize that the plane was being held for me. The two men I sat between both asked if I was running late. I told them with a laugh “I’m not even supposed to be on this flight. I’m supposed to be going to Chicago and then onto London but there were delays so they rushed my down here for this flight to connect in Dallas.” That seemed to settle some of the irritations of the nearby passengers but not the oriental doctor sitting to my left. He felt the need to quiz me about my trip and where I was from and where I was going and why. LOL
Finally I land in Dallas, TX. After wandering around aimlessly and taking several trams to get to my terminal, I get checked in with a boarding pass and try to call Spicy to let her know not to panic that I wasn’t on their flight. I called my sister, she says “Isn’t your plane fixing to take off?” I laughed and said “That’s why I’m calling. I’m in Dallas and I’m flying by myself into a different airport in London. I just wanted you to know in case one of the other planes crashed, that I’m not on them.” LOL
The flight was rather uneventful. I watched 2 movies and drank a lot of coffee. One thing that did unnerve me especially having a drowning phobia, is that the airline felt the need to constantly play the plane statistics on a large flat screen at the head of our cabin. This flight info included but was not limited to a little map that showed our plane flying over the ocean… :headdesk:
I get to Gatwick and immediately see men carrying machine guns draped across their chests walking about watching everyone… I’m thinking “Good God! Are the IRA planning an attack today?” I tried to ignore them and went through the customs guy who proceeded to ask me his 20 questions. All of which I answered but made the mistake of mentioning the concert in Coventry because he asked what my business would be in Coventry. He then asked who James Marsters was and what kind of music he played, etc. I think at this point he was just being nosey. LOL
Found a charter bus to drive me to Heathrow which cost 17.50 pounds. This is equivalent to almost $40. LOL…
I get to Heathrow and hear my name being paged over and over and I’m thinking “I can’t walk any faster!” I was already dog tired and my feet already hurt from having ran a 200 yard dash in Houston and then walking a mile in Dallas and now another mile in Heathrow. I finally find Char and Spicy and we are off to Euston Station to catch a train to Coventry.
I really liked the train station. It had quite a few nifty little shops and a nice little food court. We had about an hour or so to wait for the train. Went outside to have a smoke and a cute little blond English guy comes up and says “Can I trouble you for a smoke, love?” How could I say no? He called me love and he was young and cute. LOL
We get on the train and I passed out. I literally fell asleep until we were almost to Coventry. Well, so much for enjoying the countryside. LOL
We get to Coventry and made it the Ibis hotel and was pleasantly surprised that the gentleman at the desk was a gorgeous Frenchman named Reme. He got us all settled in and Spicy and I decided to take a walk and see if we could find the St. Mary’s Guildhall (in the dark). We didn’t find it but it was a nice walk. We came to the realization that Coventry must be a Mecca for Realtors. Every other store front was for a realtor. LOL
Day 2 –
April 25th Monday
Got up and had breakfast and went out into town to find St. Mary’s Guildhall so we would know where we would be going that night for James concert. We found it and I took some great pictures of the old Cathedral that is in ruins. I was gorgeous and the street that ran between it and the Guildhall was so quaint. We did some exploring around the church ruins and then headed back to the hotel to freshen up and check on Char.
We then headed off to the Guildhall for the concert and to queue around 3 PM. I already made it clear that I would not queue but I wanted to go to the meet up at Browns to meet any of the UK crowd I hadn’t met yet. I ran into Samifidler, Pandis, Chrisuk, Duster, Medusa, Pandora, Englishmaiden, soulmate, Ginger, Suze2000, Peggy (don’t know if I ever caught a board name for her) and others. I’m fogging on names right now.
Finally I leave around 5 PM to queue and I froze my ass off because I forgot to bring my jacket. Peggy who graciously let me drape her overcoat over my shivering arms showed kindness to me. LOL I hope she knows how much I appreciated that.
James put on a wonderful performance. Before the concert started he did a delightful pre-rehearsed Q&A. I was kind of irritated that they didn’t have him elevated so everyone could see him. I sat in the back, so unfortunately, I couldn’t see him but he sounded wonderful and relaxed and laughed a lot. I couldn’t even see his head during the Q&A but for the concert he at least stood up so you could see him better.
When the concert ended, they had us go by rows to get our signed CD’s from James personally. As we got closer, I realized they were just handing them out and he was giving each person a hug and most but not everyone a kiss on the cheek. Some people got rushed through and didn’t get an enjoyable encounter but I must admit that I had an enjoyable one. It was my turn… I looked him right in the eyes and he held his arms open for me and said “Hey Baby!” and he enveloped me in his arms, kissed my cheek and squeezed me tight. *Sigh* I told him as he pulled back to look into my eyes that he put on a really good show. He said “Thank you! I have to agree, I think this is the best one I’ve done so far!” He squeezed my hand as I walked away and said “See ya later.”
And that was that. It was fun. He was really relaxed and excited about his performance.
We then headed back to the Hotel for a little impromptu get together and then off to bed.
I knew I would either dream about that gorgeous smile and those blue eyes or I would dream about were-leopards and vampires because at this point, I was about 20 chapters away from finishing Incubus Dreams. LOL Guess what I dreamed about? Go ahead… Guess…
I dreamt about queuing and freezing my ass off! Haha!
Coventry Pics - Sorry no James pics... I was too far back. LOL
More to come tomorrow.