... they had oatmeal. Today was going to be a good day.
October 20, 2013
... aside from seeing a full blown, end to end rainbow... nothing too eventful on the drive to Quebec City. We woke up around 8am, went to the lobby for breakfast (did I mention they had oatmeal?), then back in the van for 9:30am.
We breezed through the border... the officer actually gave us the thumbs up once he figured out we were a band... and then it was only a couple hours drive from there.
I need to get this off my chest... I don't like being in Quebec... I feel so awkward here.
I like Quebec, I like the people from Quebec, and I really do like listening to the language. I can read french and understand it enough in conversation... but I can't write it or speak it so the communication barrier (mainly mental) makes me feel really uncomfortable.
I mumble often and speak quietly in english... so toss in my butchering of a different language into the equation... and you don't have a recipe for success.
... basically... I feel like Mr. Bean when I'm in here.
I know some french lessons would solve a lot of my problems but I'm almost 30 years old... and part of me feels like it's just punishment for my not paying attention in grade 9 french class... or whenever we started taking french in public school.
I do try to speak french when I'm here though... my main problem is I feel like I can't order food anywhere. I always end up having to point or use a number system. It's sad... but at least I try.
Anyway... new trip to Quebec... fresh start... I'm determined to not only eat today... but to order in french.. no pointing... but number system allowed. Baby steps.
So we pull into a service station just after noon. There's a St. Hubert restaurant involved and the guys decide it's a good place to grab lunch.
I'm hesitant to order anything... but I'm definitely hungry and decide to scope out the situation. At least if everyone else is ordering... I might be able to get lost in the shuffle.
... I check the menu posted above the counter... number system.
Awesome... I can do this.
I'm next in line... time comes...
"Bonjour... numero trois... please."
(I always say please... I can't help it.)
She looks at me with a blank stare... then basically mumbles 'huh?'
"... numero trois."
(I'm trying with every ounce of strength to not point at the sign.)
Same awkward stare... she motions to bring another employee over... aka the bilingual one. I'm starting to panic... everyone else has got their order and food already. I gotta say as far as fast food goes... this place is frickin' fast!
I try one more time before the other employee shows up... I'm running out of time here to salvage this attempt.
(I brought out the biggest gun I had.)
"... combo numero trois... s'il vous plait."
... too late. The bilingual employee had shown up to take my order... and to add insult to injury... without my knowing... I found my left arm, holding up my left hand... while it pointed at the sign.
"Allo, can I take your order please?"
"... number 3 please."
"Would you like a drink with that?"
I get my receipt, food is ready in 30 seconds... it's delicious but the loss stings.
0/1, 0% success rate
Ah well... I tried. I'll have to try again the next few days... unless I just live off gas station food for a bit... which is not a bad idea right now... ketchup chips have at least two food groups according to Dr. Denial's nutritional guidelines.
We arrived in Quebec City around 3:30pm. The venue is awesome. It reminds me of a cross between the Mod Club and Opera House in Toronto. Great sight lines, balcony, and lots of space for bands on stage and backstage. We had a dressing room too!
I'll skip ahead since the show went really well...
I wasn't sure how the crowd would react to us since Quebec'ers seem to love the heavy stuff and we're not that heavy... definitely not as heavy as Pop Evil or Papa Roach in my books... but then again all the shows I've played in Quebec over the years, the crowd will get into it. No exception tonight. I think they were already into our set halfway through the first tune.
I snapped a couple pics from my kit... tried to take a before and after.
It was hard to get a good 'after' shot because the house lights were so dark/low. They were pretty rowdy and singing along by the end of a few songs... our choruses are pretty simple that way which helps. I got lots of great shots during Pop Evil and Papa Roach though so you can see what the crowd looked like. It was rammed in there.
Yeah I run around a lot during the other sets... it's fun.
Definite highlight during Papa Roach... some poor lanky kid got picked up and forcibly... forced into crowd surfing. He was pretty scrawny... so once he was up there... he was basically screwed. The crowd was literally throwing him around... like... he was getting air. He was motioning for them to put him down but no dice. He might as well of been a beach ball.
Eventually he did make it back to his feet... and then went straight back into the pit. What a trooper. Kudos to that guy.
Merch went well after the show... took a bunch of pics... I had my disguise on (hat and hoodie) so people didn't realize I was in the band. It doesn't bother me... I'm just the backbone of everything happening on stage. *cough*
Great show though... amazing crowd. Safe to say it could be the best show/crowd of the tour... still two shows left though.
It's 3:09am... staying at a Comfort Inn... breakfast starts at 6:30am. We have tomorrow off so I might cast my vote to stay here until Wednesday The rate is good and seems like a decent hotel. Everyone just wants to sleep anyway... except McLaughlin... that dude wants to party.
P.S. Sometimes this what backstage looks like.
P.P.S. Did I mention I had oatmeal for breakfast? :-)
P.P.P.S Welcome to Quebec!
Mike Langford - Official Blog
Being on both sides of the glass, I get the chance to wear many hats in the music industry. This is a place to share my thoughts, views, predictions, rants, stories and news!