Saturday, May 19, 2012

Two Wrongs Do Make a Right

Friday night, I went to a Julian Perretta/ Inna Modja concert with a good friend of mine. Since they're both much more popular in Europe, I'm providing links to their most well known songs for those of you who are interested.

Julian Perretta:

Inna Modja:

Marie and I were determined to be in the first row for the concert, so we decided to go early and arrived at 2 P.M. The only person in sight was a casino worker. In order to make sure this completely deserted area was, indeed, where the concert would take place, we asked the lady.

Lesson #1: If someone of almost seemingly highish authority asks if you're an artist performing that night, say yes. 

Unfortunately, we told the truth and said we weren't. This led to us wandering around for over 3 hours in the middle of a town built for people turning into vegetables.

After the 3 long and completely uneventful hours had passed, we went back to the casino to see if any other people had arrived. Two girls had waltzed in to wait for Julian during the time that Marie and I were doing nothing, so we waited with them. A little over 5 minutes later, in walks Inna Modja, just as calm and cute as can be. She had such a welcoming vibe that I just had to go talk to her.

After that nice little moment, we went ahead and got in line, even though there wasn't much of one. As we're sitting there, listening to Julian rehearse through the walls, we start thinking, "Well, we probably won't meet Julian. At least we met Inna, right?" This was a slightly disappointing thought, for we absolutely adore Julian.

When the doors finally opened, we raced in and got standing spots directly in front of the microphone. Even at this point, there were only a roughly estimated 50 people or so. It wasn't until a few minutes before he started that more people came in. Even then, there were less that half a thousand. 

Eventually, Julian started singing in his captivating English accent. It was beautiful. He was beautiful. The atmosphere that the spectators were creating, however, was not beautiful. Every time I turned around, I saw the rest of the crowd standing in the corners of the room with their arms crossed, completely unaffected by the magic Julian was creating. 

For the first time ever, I was utterly disappointed in Luxembourg. Julian must have been equally disappointed, because, although was really nice about it, he made multiple references about how we weren't giving him much to work with. 

The concert finished, and everyone cleared out. The band started to pack up the equipment, and because Marie and I were still hanging around, the guitarist gave us a set list and talked to us a bit. He then went back to packing up and Marie and I went outside for a walk. We discussed whether or not we wanted to go watch Inna perform, or be obsessed fans and wait for Julian to come around. We chose the latter. 

We were sitting near the entrance of the casino and noticed a huge line. We spent a good 10 minutes trying to figure out why everyone was standing in this massive line and came to the conclusion that it was for the bathroom. Then I realized that Julian probably wouldn't be walking out this way because there were too many people. I got up to go to the back of the building, but Marie just stayed where she was. 4 footsteps later, I make the grand discovery that the line was not for the toilets, but for Julian. Way to go, Cayenne, he was merely a few feet away from you this entire time. I signaled Marie over and we waited in line to meet him.

He promised Marie that he'd take a photo with her if we waited a few minutes for everyone to kind of scatter out a little. While waiting, I had an excellent conversation with the keyboardist who found it "cute" that I'm from Arkansas. It was during this time that I lost Marie. 

Lesson #2: Never leave Marie's side.

I don't handle getting lost very well, so I paced in circles and panicked for half an hour until her dad showed up. We looked everywhere, but had no luck in finding her. Inna was in the process of playing, so her dad told me to go watch the rest of the concert.

Right as Inna was wrapping up, I received a text from an unrecognized number. 

"Hey, I'm in Julian's cabin. Wait for me by the doors."

Lesson #3: Seriously, never leave Marie's side.

I went around and asked various staff members to lead me to these supposed doors, but each one told me they weren't accessible to the public. That is, until some super nice lady told me I could be an exception and led me not only to the doors, but directly into the room of Julian, Julian's overwhelmingly attractive brother, and his band members. Keyboard Boy (who was well on his way to the happy land of drunkenness) greeted me with a big shout of, "Arkansas!" Normally, people forget I'm from Arkansas 5 seconds after I tell them, so this provided a surprisingly nice feeling.

Due to my tardiness, I missed out on picture time, so I don't really have many pictures of us together. I'm trying to convince myself that it's okay. Despite my relatively unreliable memory, I'm pretty positive I'll be able to remember this. If not, I still have the signed ticket, set list, and a piece of his candy....

So many little things went just wrong enough to have wonderfully positive outcomes. For this, I'm going to consider Friday night to have been a hectic, panic-inducing success.  

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Yellow Car Prostitutes

During the Carnaval vacations, I went to Amsterdam with a friend and her family. Typically, I'm not a fan of large cities, but Amsterdam proved to be an exception. I'm not a hipster, but if I were, Amsterdam would be my heaven-- bikes everywhere, weed and magic mushrooms in every other shop, and thrift stores all over the place. 

Perhaps being the offspring of two hippies gives me an automatic liking for these types of things. DNA, baby. 

We started the three day vacation by visiting Anne Frank's house. I've read the book and done my own research (I have a sick fascination for the Holocaust and Anne Frank), but this visit proved to be more informative than anything Google or Wikipedia has ever offered me on the subject. Seeing the pictures she'd put on the walls to liven up the place and the emotional pages of her original journal was a powerful experience that made everything seem so much more real.

We visited two museums. One, of course, being the Van Gogh museum. Being surrounded by his artwork made me overly giddy. Pointillism for the win.

After exploring the city and taking a boat tour (during which we saw one of the narrowest houses in the world), we spent a portion of the night doing some prostitute window shopping in the Red Light District.  Originally, I expected a small street of girls behind lit up windows, but the district is actually quite huge. There are streets of girls, followed by a couple of blocks of sex shops and adult theatres, then a few more blocks of girls, and so on. Obviously, the prostitution business in Amsterdam is nothing like it is in the United States, but, even so, I didn't expect the rooms and the girls to appear to be so clean. Please notice I said "appear." I have absolutely no idea what the actual level of cleanliness is. Surely it can't be too awfully high.

I'm sure a large majority of you are wondering, "Cayenne, did you smoke some weed?" The answer is no. I apologize if I disappointed you by going to the "weed capital of the world" and not consuming cannabis. However, I did purchase some weed-flavored products. Yes, suckers are one of those products. And what surprisingly delicious suckers they are! THC free, too, though I recall laughing a bit more than normal while ingesting the goodness....

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Holy Saints of Mystical Muffins, the Girl's Alive

I'm reintroducing bubble baths into my life. When I was younger, I preformed the greatest science experiments in the bath tub. About the time I was in fourth grade, I developed the opinion of "baths are for babies." The younger we are, the older we want to be. Less than a year from legal adulthood, I'm proud to say that I've rediscovered the happiness of bath time.

I spent last week in Paris with my school. These are the three things I think of (apart from the much earned reputation of the rude Parisians) when I reflect back on my time there:

     1. Romeo and Juliette. In a tiny, over-heated theatre, we watched a group of young actors preform the famous Shakespeare play. I've seen quite a few plays before, but this one, in my personal opinion, was the most stunning of them all. The enthusiastic energy of the actors, the haunting tones of the music, the slight pain I felt in my heart when it was over.... It was perfection.

     2. The Eiffel Tower. For most people, this is an expected favorite. I, however, was quite surprised by the legitimate beauty of the structure. Back when I'd only seen it in pictures, I never understood why people always talk about how magnificent it is. After all, it's just a load of industrial metal, no? I'm going to give the rest of the world a bit of credit and say that the Eiffel Tower is, indeed, breathtaking.

     3. Vomit and mafia. After resting on a low wall for a while, I decided it was time to get up and let my feet die a little more (we did a lot of walking). The very moment that I stood up, a boy I go to school with walked in front of me and spewed his lunch all over the place. It's been a little too long since I've been on YouTube with my cousin, so my tolerance for vomit isn't necessarily at its peak. I grabbed my friend and walked over to a seemingly safe area. It was there that a man of bizarre character approached us with a piece of paper. We waved him off, but he was persistent, and started throwing in lip-to-paper gestures. After a long period of said persistence, he finally left. Immediately after, a couple of friends came up and asked me, "Cayenne, why were you just talking to the mafia?" And there you have it, people. I've directly spoken to the mafia without knowing.