We have been steering ourselves towards Lucerne for this one particular night, just because James Blunt is playing in town.
It’s not because we are James Blunt fans, though I may be able to claim ‘groupie’ status, having now seen his shows and met him at least 4 times – not that he would remember.
The sound engineer for Blunt has become a good friend of Don’s, they bonded over a mutual love of golf.
Mike Hornby lives a nomadic life traveling with Blunt on his current world tour. Hornby is a highly respected veteran (some even say legend), in the music industry, having worked with the likes of Radiohead, Supergrass, Lloyd Cole, John Cale and Joe Strummer. Those who know me, know that most of those names mean nothing to me!
The best thing I love about Mike are his stories (because I don’t love golf that much). He’s always got an amusing story to share about the antics that go on ‘on tour’, surprisingly they generally consist of innocent good fun. Like removing all the furniture out of his hotel room.
We are sworn to secrecy and cannot divulge anymore. We all know the adage; “what goes on tour stays on tour!”
Mike generously provides us tickets for the show. Lucky for us he is touring with Blunt and not Supergrass, I don’t think I could sit through a Supergrass concert. We catch-up with Mike for a few hours after the show, swapping tales – his are much funnier than ours.
We bid him farewell with the hope to catch-up again somewhere around the world. Mike boards his luxury coach, one of two that shuttle Blunt and his entourage around Europe. It’s an overnight drive to his next destination. The coaches might be all luxurious, fitted out with beds and lounges, but I don’t think I would enjoy the lifestyle.
By the way; Lucerne also happens to be a beautiful city. I could say picture-perfect, but I think that phrase is heading into over use. However, it is true. Situated on Lake Lucerne and surrounded by the swiss alps, the medieval old town is well preserved with some gorgeous architecture sweeping around the lake.
The Chapel bridge forms the centerpiece of the townscape. The covered wooden bridge is one of the oldest in Europe, though it was damaged in a fire in 1993, it has since been fully restored.
The one purchase we make in Lucerne is a Bodum coffee plunger. We pass a Bodum store with a sale. The price of coffee is becoming exorbitant, so the idea of making our own brew is a good one. We quickly calculate the payback – about 6 cups of coffee, after you buy the coffee. We are now the proud owners of a bright yellow Bodum coffee plunger.
Switzerland being as expensive as it is, we booked a room in the Youth Hostel. Not having done the backpacking thing in his youth, Don has never stayed in a youth hostel before.
It’s a basic set-up; simple room, communal kitchen and the biggest bonus is that it’s walking distance to concert venue. The one downside was the shared bathrooms, the first time we have had to actually share. Our room is opposite the shower and after listening to several people take one, we decided we could skip one that morning.