Near Depeche Experience
- by Happiest Girl,
Feb 2006 -
Is there such a thing?
How can a simple phone call a Sunday night make your
stomach turn, your hands shake and your pulse rate soar?
Sunday 26 February my phone rang. It was Trym, head
of the Norwegian Depeche Mode fan club.
I had sent him a text message
earlier that day, to find out the return time from Vilnius,
Lithuania on Sunday 19 March (Ed: Happiest
Girl is going to Vilnius to see DM..of course!).
You see, I work Sundays, and needed to know whether
I needed to book a replacement. I work in television
production, and on Sundays we do a live show from the
Plaza hotel in central Oslo. Strictly Come Dancing,
packed with sequins, hairspray and glamour. For some,
that is. Not us in the ob truck.
Trym rang me at 19.20, with a somewhat cryptic message.
Did I have the night off? No. When did I finish work?
Between 21 and 22. Did I realize there was a certain
rock band on its way to Oslo? Yeeeees
I want to show up in a secret bar, at a secret address
just in case something really cool but secret should
happen? And did I want to bring an attractive friend?
And KEEP YOUR MOUTH COMPLETELY SHUT ABOUT THIS for security
reasons! Okay. Thanks. Sure. Yes. Lovely. Thanks again.
SHIT!!! I put the phone down at 19.27. We go on air
at 19.30. Great. Live shows require unbridled attention,
I press keys and stuff, the mind should not wander too
far off what we're there do to. The possibility of meeting
the band you've been a massive fan of for decades in
fact, is hardly what needs to spin around in your head
in such a situation. With an enormous effort I manage
to put this information into a folder in my head, and
shut it until the live broadcast is over and done with.
Obviously, I am in no fit state to meet anyone this
particular Sunday, yes it is Sunday, you're supposed
to lounge in tracksuit bottoms watching telly in the
comfort of your own home, so consequently my hair is
so greasy it almost drips, I'm wearing no makeup at
all, dressed in a hooded jumper and combats. Not exactly
how I had pictured myself meeting synth deity. Clearly,
something has to be done, so I jump into a taxi after
work and rush home and into the shower, still with a
rather frantic pulse rate. I try really hard to get
the pulse under control, a few deep breaths and I'm
almost there. I have no desire to be a blabbering idiot
in front of anyone, least of all anyone I like.
Fresh from the shower, with makeup relatively carefully
applied and wearing black I arrive at the said address.
Outside I bump into Espen from EMI, who serves as a
confirmation that I am at the right place. I'm not quite
sure what to expect, Espen tells me nothing, I don't
ask, we just chat about friends we have in common. I
go into the bar, there are only a few people there yet,
and the first one I meet turns out to be Linda. I'm
just super-pleased to see her, I don't know anyone else
there apart from Trym, and now I feel I can relax a
little bit. She, however, is anything but relaxed. Rather
pale and wide-eyed, she is hanging at the bar drinking
Indian beer. Very, very frightened. I join her, order
an Indian beer at NOK 60 per bottle! Extortionate! But
what can I do? It is not the time nor the place
We sit there. We chat. We are nervous. We don't know
what to do other than drink the pricey beer and nip
out for a cigarette from time to time. I turn my head
every time the door opens, I can't help it, Linda jumps
every time I do it, and tells me off. Then we nag Trym.
What's going on?? Tell us what's going on? Don't keep
us in the dark! The replies are they're still on stage
in Gothenburg, they're on their way into the country
now, plane just landed at Gardermoen, etc etc. How's
your intuition, Linda asks me. I usually trust the stuff
my stomach tells me, for a reason, it is usually quite
right, more right than my head unfortunately, but I
refuse to listen to it. I don't want to know what it
tells me, I want to hope. Time passes, the bar is nearly
full by now, people I have never seen before, and they
are not the kind of crowd that I feel at ease with.
They seem to be trying too hard to be cool, maybe they
are cool, but I don't think so. We're getting bored
and disheartened, it's almost two o'clock in the morning
when Trym finally get a message, they've checked in
at the hotel, they're staying at the bloody Plaza Hotel
I left just a few hours ago, and they've gone straight
to bed. Oh no
There must have been something in that beer (alcohol?)
because Trym, Linda and I turn fourteen again, jump
into a taxi and go down to the Plaza Hotel. Absolutely
sod all is going on there, everything is closed, there
is only one lonely bloke mopping the floor in the reception
area. Oh well. Close, but not close enough. I am back
at the Plaza Hotel the following Sunday, and I threaten
to borrow the main key, and go into every single room
in the entire hotel and roll around in all the beds
just to make sure. I don't, of course. But it would
have been fun.
Back to news