Friday September 6, Enschede, Netherlands - Woke up in Franks place in Antwerp with my boots on. Joined the artist/film maker/musician Ludo Mich and Chantelle Strubbelingen for breakfast. A bit like Kris Kristoffersons 'Sunday Morning Coming Down'. After a while I had a boiled egg. We talked about the Hunters Moon Festival in Carrick on Shannon, and I flicked through Karen Constances wonderful book with a 7 inch single hidden inside the back cover. The postman delivered collectable vinyl LPs, the atmosphere delivered heavy rain.
When the rain cleared we headed for the station and a train to Enschede. Needed to change trains in Rotterdam but missed my connection. Hung around for a while. Commuters were packed in like sardines, no seats available, only standing room between carraiges. A man wearing a white suit and white shoes did his best to make room for me to squeeze in. Looked like an Angel. As I trundled on board he said "Welcome to Hell". I nodded at him not sure what to think. Eventually I arrived into Enschede where a street festival was underway. Played the gig, had a sleep. Nice folks to deal with.
Saturday Sept 7, Dusseldorf, Germany – The lady in the ticket office was of no help. She said “You can by a ticket on the platform.” I explained I needed to go to Dusseldorf, which is in another country. She told me to go to Hengelo and buy a ticket there. It was hot and hazy. Outside on the platform the train to Hengelo awaited but I couldn’t see any ticket machines. I asked a ticket inspector. “You dont need a ticket to Hengelo” he told me in a no nonsense sort of a way. “So if the ticket inspector asks me for a ticket what do I do?” i enquire. “Im the ticket inspector on this train. No ticket!” Fair enough I think, and board the train. In Hengelo I bought a ticket to Dusseldorf and when the lady handed me the itinerary I noticed the first change was at Enschede. I said “I’ve just come from Enschede.” She shrugged her shoulders, I took the ticket and found the platform and waited....and waited.
Back in Enschede there was a long wait for the slow train to Munster from platform 4B. Two ladies were deep in conversation on the bench. I re-checked the details on the screen. I swung around to ask one of the ladies if this was indeed the right platform and they were no longer there, and neither was the bench. It was a bit early in the day for this type of spooky stuff. Trying to rationalise this psychic event I became aware that my shirt was soaking wet. I was sweating profusely. Maybe I had a fever, caught some bad bug, my cup of tea was spiked, a drone had shot a micro poison dart into my neck. A man of Persian aspect approached me “Do you speak English?”. I told him I did and we discussed the train to Munster scenario. He had also been given the runaround by the ticket office inside, as i had an hour earlier. I noticed he too was sweating profusely as he took out a hankerchief and mopped his brow. It wasn’t just me. It must have been 35 degrees and humidity was high as a kite. I had to accept that people, and sometimes the benches on which they sit, simply disappear. It never crossed my mind to ask the man of Persian aspect if he was troubled by invisible people. Sometimes its best to keep your mouth shut.
It was a long lonesome day. In Dusseldorf the rain came down and I felt lost but made it to Solaris 53 in one piece. Greeted Uki and crew before having Thai food in a small family run restaurant with all the gods watching me. The same place I had dinner last time I was in this town. Then I went back down to the dark end of the street and played the gig.