I’m in London. Sitting in my friend’s flat. Relaxed after a hot bath and Paul Auster’s “Moon Palace”.
My day was rather adventurous. I arrived very fucking early at Stanstead. When I went through the Passport Check, the lovely woman asked what I was doing there. “Making music and seeing friends” I said.
“Where is your show?” She asked. “The Garage” I responded. It was a show mainly for “exposure”, so I didn’t think it would be an issue at all. Boy, I was wrong.
Within seconds I was hauled into the “waiting section”. Then I was brought to the back room. I kept my cool. Deep breaths. A tall, Alpha male with a bald head and red beard spoke in his baritone voice as he directed me to a small room “We’re just going to have a little talk and see whether we should let you into the country or not”.
I waited in this small room for a long time. Another friendly middle-aged woman came and explained to me that she would be taking my photo and fingerprints. She complained about the tight blue gloves: “Argh. My fat hands!” she said. She then took me into another room and fingerprinted me.
A nice fellow with a salt and pepper beard came into the room. He asked me to sign some papers and took me to the “holding room”. Thank god it wasn’t a “holding cell”, although they did lock me in.
However, they offered me hot food, chips, fruit and a variety of books. I pulled one out, read and ate as the TV blared.
The first woman reappeared and took me into the same small room. She asked me several questions. She then asked if I’m famous “Like Madonna or Bruce Springsteen … you can tell how old I am” she said. “Nope. I’m MORE famous than those bitches, muthafuckaaaa! Bow down!”
She explained that I can’t play music in London without certain papers. She asked if there’s a reason why I should be allowed in the country. “Because I love British bands!” I exclaimed. “Well, that’s not the most convincing reason” she said. “I was thinking more along the lines of if you had a sick grandmother in London or something”.
They took me back in the waiting room. I continued reading. The interrogator-woman returned after speaking with her superiors and said “It’s your lucky day, young man. You’re allowed in”.
I gave her a big hug and a smooch, grabbed my shit and voila! I’m HERE! In London! In fact, mere hours ago, I was trudging past London Bridge! No joke!
Tomorrow I will busk in the streets and tomorrow night I play my show. The following evening I will be in Tubingen, Germany. Ah, life… so many adventures…