(4th October 2000)
Last night was a wonderful night in Oxford but today is a new day and we are going to see Michael in Nottingham.
Jinty stayed at my home last night so that we could travel up to Nottingham together with my daughter Laura. It was 8.30am and I still hadn't decided whether I wanted to drive or whether to have a lazy train ride. I went for the latter!! Train time sorted we rang for a taxi. The lady taxi driver asked us as soon as we got in the car "Where you off to, anywhere nice?". What a ridiculous question I thought, and there was me with Michael plastered all over my chest...OH IF ONLY!! Of course that was a cue for us to natter on about Michael, and at the moment I can't stop going on about him. I really think I am losing it.
We found our seats on the train and settled down for a 2 ½ hr journey. Laura had brought her walkman with her to pass the time away, you know how kids are at 12, time just doesn't pass quick enough when they are travelling. She was listening to "The Movies" and decided she would share an earpiece with me. As I have said before I am not the quietest of people where a walkman is concerned, and Laura warned me not to sing. Those of you who do not know Jinty very well, she is a little deaf and spends a lot of time lip reading, so bare that in mind when you talk to her. Good thing about it, you can say nasty things and she may not hear you....JOKE. Well Laura and I decided we would test how good she was at lip reading. We were singing "Love On The Rocks" just mouthing the words. Jinty just said she wished she had a video to show how stupid we looked. We were being quite expressive too. Oh Well passed some of the time away anyway. Laura and I went off to the loo. Those of you who travel by train will know it isn't the easiest of things to do. All I can say is I am glad that they didn't have a camera in the loo because Laura & I thought we would try out dancing to "Livin La Vida Loca" to the movement of the train. Quite large loos on this train, well it would have to be for me to dance in it.
After a FEW brandies for Jint, disgusting cup of tea for me (Cant hold more than one for long), kit kat, toffee crisp for Laura we arrived at Nottingham at about 2.30. We were making our way to Jintys office to dump off our bags before going to the stage door to see Michael arrive. What should we see before us but two posters of Michael and he was wearing a T-shirt which said "I Love Jinty True", heaven knows where they came from!!!!!!! Bags dumped off we hurried off to the hall.
When we arrived, there were a few fans there already, amongst them were Sue May & Debra (Ohio). This was to be Debra's last concert before returning to the states. We stood around generally chatting and waiting for Michael to arrive. By the stage door was some work being done to the pavements so that end was totally blocked off which meant that Michael was only going to come in from the one way. Time was passing rather slowly and I kept wandering to the end of the road to see if Michael was in sight. Whilst stood there a young man ....Definitely younger than me...pulled up in his lorry wearing a hard hat. He got out of his lorry and proceeded to give me stick about Michael. I think it gave the game away as to who we were waiting for as I did have Michael plastered across my chest. I won't go into the comments he passed but "Never fear Ros was there", I defended Michael to the death. I gave him a couple of slaps across the arm just to let him know he wasn't getting the better of me. He tried to persuade us to go to the "Goose Fair" instead of going to see Michael. Now girls, I nearly gave in.!!!!!!!! Well not quite but I could have been tempted had my daughter not been with me. ONLY JOKING HONESTLY...BUT......he has the bluest eyes I have ever seen. I told him they weren't as blue as Michael's...BUT...even Laura said she thought they were. I couldn't stop looking at them. Turned out he was 25 yrs old had two boys who also have blue eyes & blonde hair. If they grow up like their father... well it doesn't bare thinking about. His name was Shaun by the way, and Laura took my photo with him so if I can get scanned on I will so that you can see the evidence. I'm afraid the eyes don't show up though unfortunately.
Michael arrived about 4.15 and we all moved down to the side of the coach to see him get off. He fooled us all and got out the other side of the coach and went in to the stage door. Must say we were a little disappointed, especially Debra as this was her last concert and she would have liked to have seen him before she left. Never mind there was always after the show!!
Jinty provided us with a superb meal before the concert. She cooked..with the aid of Laura...lamb steaks with all the trimmings. It was just what we needed....THANK YOU JINT. Had a couple of glasses of red wine and we were ready to see Michael.
We were sat in row 2 in front of "Guess Who"?.....no not Michael, the other love in my life "MICK". Laura was so pleased as I had told Mick the day before that she would be there and when he saw her he was pulling faces and smiling at her. It goes without question that Michael was wonderful and I really do think he is improving with every concert he is doing. He is obviously feeling more relaxed and happy with how the show is going. I have seen Michael 5 times now, but he still makes chills run down my spine when he sings. "Empty Chairs & Empty Tables" just makes the hair on my arms stand on end. No matter how many times I hear him sing that song it still effects me the same way. "If Tomorrow Never Comes" means so much to me, as I am sure it does to a lot of people. I listen to the words and think very deeply to what they mean. I think about the "Goodbyes" I didn't say to my husband & Mum because they were taken so quickly from me. Michael really knows how to make you feel that when he is singing, the words are meant for you alone.
It was coming up to the "Olympic Run" song and I was still undecided whether I was staying in my seat or going forward. I finally decided to stay where I was as I had a good view anyway. Laura made a mad dash for the front along with Debra & Sue. Laura ended up right under his nose but just behind two ladies. Bearing in mind she is only 12, she couldn't quite get as good a view as she would have liked. I would like to say a really BIG THANK YOU to two very kind ladies, I don't know who they were, but they pushed Laura in front of them so that she could see Michael. Michael's fans can be so kind can't they. She was really rocking and when he was sat down she said she was so close she could have touched him..BUT she didn't. She's only 12 years old, she'll learn.
The end of the concert came all too quickly and Michael had to leave us again. As it was Debra's last concert we went to the stage door to watch Michael come out. I managed to have my photo taken with Mick and Laura. A large crowd had gathered and whilst we were waiting Cathy came out. All of a sudden flashlights could be seen and of course this was the cue that Michael was coming. Laura was so excited to see him again. She touched his hand as he leant out of the window...AND THEN HE WAS GONE .
We walked back slowly to the house and spent some time chatting and going over the concert again & again. This was to be our last night with Debra so wanted to savour the moment. We knew if we went to bed that the night would end so we tried to hang on to it as long as we could. We had to eventually give in, and we went to sleep with Michael playing in the background.
It was now 8.00 Thursday morning and Jinty had to go into work and Laura & I had to return to Gloucester. We decided that we would go and have breakfast at McDonalds. We took photos and the waitress took one of us together. Jinty had to leave us now, and we went back to say goodbye to Debra. I absolutely hate goodbyes and I always make a fool of myself . I was sad to say goodbye to Debra we had such a good time whilst she has been here. Jinty came to the station with us and we had to say goodbye again. That's one of the drawbacks of being a fan, if you live a distance away we are always saying goodbyes, until the next time.
That was the end of our Nottingham experience......Until 19 th Oct....I am going back to see if I can find Shaun the builder with those wonderful blue eyes.
Ros Davis - 4 th October 2000