Tour Diary Day 4 – Manchester to Edinburgh

TOUR DAIRY DAY 4. Leaving Manchester was always going be hard so we took our time. Over strong coffee we made our plan of attack but on the map Edinburgh looked an awfully long way (spoiler alert – it is). Before setting off though, Gus and I both made jaunts to catch up with old friends which though they would delay our eventual departure, we felt sure would bolster our hearts with the fortitude to press further north, there to try our luck with the plucky Scots.

I took the opportunity to catch up with top pal Lail Arad who, fortune would have it, was in town having played a show on the same night as us as. Over yet more coffee we discussed our respective gigs (both excellent!), the futility of PR (a spectacular waste of money), and all the many emotional twists and turns our hearts have taken over the last year before Lail and her band of chisel-jawed top guns jumped in the van to head to their next date in York – have a good tour team Arad!

By the time Gus and I met back up, it was starting to get dark as we set off which i felt sure was a bad sign. As we traversed Manchester’s city centre it then started raining and I kid you not, we were followed by a black cloud for the full 6 largely stonily silent hours it took to get to Edinburgh. The drive itself was noteworthy only the continuos thundering rain and that we got conned into going to ‘J38 Services’ (proudly opened by ‘Sally Traffic from BBC Radio wherever) rather than the glorious Tebay services LITERALLY 300 metres down the road. When you’re on a long drive, the quality of the services matter, so we felt bitter about having missed our chance to throw bread in the rain to the ducks at Tebay.

With no ducks for comfort, and Gus turning down the opportunity to listen to a podcast, we sat alone with our thoughts until, as we arrived on the outskirts of Edinburgh itself our mood was lightened by the sound of brass band music playing very loudly. Expecting to see some proud Scottish nationalists on parade, we were surprised to find the din coming from a large speaker being wheeled through the streets by a solitary man, seemingly oblivious to the waves of friday night crowds he was parting with his oom pah pah. Smiles returned to our faces and with trumpets still ringing in our tired ears, we finally arrived at our friend Anouk‘s house. Though weary from the road, we were excited to have made it and bundled up in hats and coats, for its bloody cold here, we quickly took up residence in the pub round the corner. Much drinking was had, Anouk’s dog Flynn wore my red hat like a trooper, we chatted all colours of silliness with anyone who would listen, so happy we were to just be out of the car, before finally falling onto some delicious food back at Anouk’s and crashing out.

Today has been a riot, we stood in the crater of an old volcano and learnt about the very start of geology as we know it, but i’ll tell you all about that tomorrow. Now we concentrate for tonight our gig is at the marvelous St Stephen’s Church in Stockbridge with those improvising lunatics Sink and very large organ will be involved. See you there! x