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Discuss this blog entry here onwards [thanks Lore]
It was always inevitable that the Christmas break would vanish before we'd had the chance to get nearly half the lazing about done that we'd planned. Sure enough, here we are again heading off to do a TV show. I set off this morning in the belief that we were going to do the German equivalent of the Grammy awards. Somebody asked me yesterday where that would be. I told them I was fairly sure that an event like this would be in Berlin, but really I had no idea - I'd find out when we got there. My first surprise then, comes when we land and the passport inspector greets me with a cheery "Bonjour". Odd, he thinks I'm French.
No, apparently, we're going to Offenberg today and the nearest airport is in France. Once we get to the venue, it becomes clear that this is also not an awards show. This is some kind of rather cheesy but hugely, hugely popular German gameshow. That's a personal best. Less than an hour back on the road and I already don't know where I am or what's going on.
The guys are performing Viva today, so the regular layout of the keyboards, the TV, the bell and so on bring us back onto more familiar ground once we get into rehearsals. The studio is huge and the set is really quite fancy. The fellas themselves are clearly enjoying being back together. The first day back after a break is always a joy. Everyone is bouncy and enthused and today is certainly a case in point. They're clearly enjoying being a gang again and spirits are high through the rehearsal.
I've written a couple of times about the treatment that Will dishes out to the poor old bell on a nightly basis when touring. Well, it would appear that it's spent the Christmas break plotting revenge. Halfway through the first chorus, Will strikes the bell with an almighty clout and the soft beater breaks away from the stick flying off behind him. The balance of the stick is now completely off and Will smacks himself in the face with it. The camera cuts briefly to Will to show a small pool of blood gathering just beside his nose. He's damn lucky not to have removed an eye live on television.
In typical Champion style, he steams ever onwards, refusing to be swerved from course. He throws the errant stick over his shoulder and grabs another without dropping a single beat.
With only minor injuries, we're back on the road once more...