It doesn’t take much for me to like a city. I’m just happy to be out of the house, really. I can find something enjoyable about nearly every place we’ve been over the last year. I didn’t have to look very hard in Perth. I had such a good time here. For starters, there are parrots just flying about everywhere, perched in the palm trees outside my window. Where I’m from, the only place you see parrots is at the zoo.
The city itself is really cute, with lots of nice little shops and restaurants. The gig was amazing, it was an outdoor cricket arena, comparable to an American football field. It was monstrous. It was circled by enormous stadium lights, the grass is so green you’d swear it was fake, there must be 30,000 seats, I mean this place is big. The stage was in the middle of the field, and we sectioned off an area of 10,000 seats for the show. I love playing outdoor shows. They’re my favorite. We loaded in the evening before the show to avoid the heat, so when we arrived at the gig the sun was just setting and I was feeling very happy to be in Perth.
That happy feeling turned in to sheer joy when I was informed that we had not one, not two, but THREE golf carts. Golf carts on a cricket field is something everyone should experience in their lifetime. It was better than Disneyland. No one else really seems to care much about the golf carts, so I basically always end up adopting a cart and I refer to it as “my golf cart” for the rest of the day. It’s great. I did however almost crash a few times, because although they had American drive carts (meaning the steering wheel is on the left side), they drive on the left side in Australia. There were all these narrow roads at the gig and whenever another cart or car was coming at me I would go to the right, but they would go to the left and we’d almost crash into each other. I should have put a sign on my cart that said “I’m an American”. At least then they would be aware that I had a valid reason to be such a bad driver. Near fatal crashes and all, it was still heaps of fun.
Now bear with me, I have to talk about myself for a minute, which I don’t particularly like doing, but the guys told me I just have to tell this story, so here goes…I am fully willing to admit that I have an attitude. When it’s called for, that is. I guess to put it nicely, I don’t take crap from people. To preface the story, it was really windy in Perth and I didn’t think we were going to be able to use Stevie’s usual mic stand. The ribbons and beads would have just been flapping everywhere and hitting her in the face and it would have been a disaster, so we used a plain, undecorated mic stand. I tied roses on for her as usual, but she also asked that I take her rosary from her stand and see if I can put on the new stand just to jazz it up a bit. So I do. But it looks silly. I keep trying to make it look nice, but it just keeps looking silly. So one of the guys comes over and we’re spending far too long trying to drape a strand of beads on a mic stand. We know we’re taking too long, and we’re laughing at ourselves about it. We are by no means taking ourselves seriously. We realize that we’re not solving world hunger here. This woman comes up to the front of the stage, looks up at us and says “excuse me”. We kindly give her our attention when she rudely replies something along the lines of, “are you guys really this silly and dumb or are you just trying to look silly and dumb, how long does it take to hang a strand of fking beads on a stand?” Now, why this woman felt the need to involve herself in my life, I have no idea, but like I said, I don’t hold my tongue well, so without really thinking it through, I say “who the FK are you?…Go back to your f**king seat”. I then realize that the first 5 rows of the audience had been watching this and they all applaud me telling this woman off. Right then the spotlight operator was calibrating his spot and just happened to light me up. It was hysterical, with the spotlight on me and the audience cheering, I couldn’t help but to take a bow. Word travels fast on our crew and within 10 minutes pretty much everyone had heard about my little episode and were yelling bead related jokes at me all night. I hope I didn’t offend anyone with that story, I just thought the woman was rude, and that there was no need to speak to us like that. I promise I would never speak to anyone like that, not to mention a ticket buying fan, unless it was called for. Oh, and by the way, we ended up not using the rosary at all. I told you it looked silly.
Keeping with the topic of the mic stand, Stevie is so accustomed to having all the ribbons to play with, she was reaching for them all night. It was so funny to watch her, especially on Second Hand News when she uses the ribbons a lot. She handled the loss of the ribbons like a champ though. And we have new wardrobe to discuss! It was a little chilly at soundcheck and Stevie was worried about being cold during the show, so for the two Perth shows she wore a new skirt, basically the same style, heavier fabric with different patterns, and a bit longer than the usual one. She also wore satin gloves and a black silky scarf. She looked fabulous with a capital F. And to top it all off, she still wore the new-ish Gypsy top, the new Goodbye Baby top and she wore a brand new white layered blouse with beautiful beading and lace work for Don’t Stop. It was the nights of the new wardrobe!
Also, I would just like to mention that Stevie takes such good care of us girls. We were on a break during Christmas, so the second night in Perth she called the three girls on tour up to her dressing room and gave us belated Christmas presents. I won’t go in to details as some of the gifts were personal, but let’s just say she spoiled us, the gifts were very sweet and thoughtful. I just thought all you Stevie lovers would like a confirmation that she’s as caring and generous as I’m sure you imagine and hope her to be. She’s a pleasure to work for. (And she doesn’t read these, so you know I’m not sucking up to the boss!!)
The shows were so much fun. Being outside, in the night, under the stars, breeze blowing, music blaring, it was wonderful. The only problem is that I’m usually 6 feet below the stage, where no one can see me, and that’s how I like it. For a lot of the outdoor shows we’re all right on stage with the band, I was a mere 5 feet from Brett Tuggle, every time the lights shined on him I felt the need to crawl under the table and hide. And we’re doing a whole tour of outdoor gigs this summer, so I guess I’m just going to have to get used to it. The good part about being on the stage is that I can see our guitar players, Carlos and Neale. We make faces at each other all night and they do silly dances and make me laugh, it’s rather entertaining.
I’ve babbled for far too long now, so I’ll be on my way. Next stop: Adelaide.