Ask me anything
I remember about two years ago I stopped at a gas station in West Virginia and had the following convo with a sweet old man who was marveling at the amount of dirt on my car (i’d been driving for about 9 hours at that point). It went like this:
Sweet old man: WHOA! Looks like you’re on quite a journey, where are you from?
SOM: Never heard of it!
Me: It’s in Canada
SOM: Hmm, Canada? Nope, never heard of that either!
Which reminds me a bit of this conversation I just had with a sweet British girl during sound check 15 minutes ago (in England):
Sweet British Girl: Where are you from?
SBG (to her friends): See! I told you they were American!
Me: Well not exactly…we’re Canadian
SBG *blank confused stare*: Right.
SBG *uncomfortable pause*: But Canada is in America, right?
Me: Yes, just like Wales is in England. Right?
Ahh the British accent (which I adore).
In studio today in Cambridge recording some backing vocals for Damian Cox (Canadian-turned-Brit).
Producer Keith just gave me some feedback on one of my lines:
Keith (Jordy -ie northeast Brit): “ok, bit shorter”
Me (Canadian): ‘Ummmmm…did you just call me a bitch? A bitch otter??’
Today’s “how to read a menu” adventure in the Yellow Brick Music office, London.
(I say potayyyyyto. You say potahhhhhhto).
Me (Canadian): Jacket Potayyyyyto?? What is THAT?
Sammy (American): Baked Potayyyyyto
Meredith (Brit via Oz):Jacket Potahhhhhhto
James (Brit): Baked Spud.
Meredith: Do you want chips?
Me: No, but maybe fries
Sammy: Those are chips
Me: Then what do you call chips?
Me: This is exhausting. I’ll have salad thanks.
I’ve gotten a few notes from people wondering how the Pants-less in London Episode turned out. My sincere apologies, friends…shameful of me to leave you hanging like that, not knowing if I was still wandering around London half in the buff.
You will be relieved i’m sure to know there was a successful rescue / recovery mission for said pants (including - but not limited to - notes on random neighbors’ doors) and eventually we were reunited - much to the delight of my legs. I hope we shall never part again in such, errm, dramatic fashion.
Now that that’s resolved, I can tell you about my furry roommate Charlotte. There was no rescue/recovery mission for Charlotte. I, however, am still in recovery.
Rewind. I’ve got 2 shows in Stoke-On-Trent the following day. There is a soccer (read: football) match in town and all the hotels are sold out. The show promoter finds me quite literally the only room left in the area which is at a cute (and by ‘cute’ I mean ‘quaint bordering on dodgy’) typically british pub-with-some-rooms-upstair kinda deal out in the country. I get in around 11:30pm, exhausted. Crawl into bed almost immediately. Get up a few minutes later to use the loo, don’t bother turning on the lights, and wander barefoot across the room to the bathroom. Flip on bathroom light, sit on toilet, glance up to see what appears to be a large, furry, black…what the hell is that thing? A blob? A huge stain on the carpet? A mouse? A small squirrel? No. It’s an eight-legged creature and it is FURRY as all hell and is the size of half my hand. And I have big hands.
I know what you’re thinking. But you’re wrong - I am not the most squeamish of girls. I spent years working at an outdoor summer camp living in a cabin with tent-flap walls, multi-day day canoe trips, dock spiders, and all kinds of furry creatures. But this…I simply was not prepared. So I did what any reasonable human would do. I texted my manager alerting her of my current predicament / life-threatening situation (like there’s anything she can do about it from London at midnight), got dressed, packed my bag, killed the spider with my boot while trying to ignore the ‘squish/pop’, and evacuated the room. Straight to the bar I went and marched up to the ‘receptionist’ (read: bartender).
Her: you alright? (insert british accent)
Me: yeah, not so much. And i’m sorry if I sound like a crazy girl, but there is a monstrous furry spider the size of half my hand on my floor. No exaggeration.
Me: *staring blankly at her*
Her: Well this is England and you’re out in the country. They’re everywhere.
Me: What do you mean ‘everywhere’? …(*my voice getting progressively more high pitched with each syllable). In my ROOM?!? HOW? WHY? WHAT?!!?
Her: Sure, just everywhere. There’s nothing I can do about it, you just get used to it. And we don’t have any other rooms to move you to anyway, we’re sold out.
Me: *still staring blankly & now also incredulously at her*
Her: Do you know how many spiders humans ingest in their sleep? Lots. Happens all the time. You know when you wake up with a bit of a sore throat? That’s because you swallowed a spider in your sleep.
Me: *staring at her incredulously with a (growing) hint of rage*
Me: Yeah…NOT HELPING.
Her: Well, you can do what you like, but i’m shutting down the bar and locking up now. You can sit here in the dark or you can go back to your room or you can try to find another hotel, but everything’s sold out. I’ll leave one light on for you, please shut it off when you’ve decided (as she walks out the front door and locks it behind her, so i’m now sitting in a mostly dark, deserted, apparently gigantor-spider-infested pub).
So I sit there for a good 30 minutes calling every hotel in a 30 mile radius (keep in mind I have no car). All sold out. Defeated and still exhausted, back I go up to my room. I leap over dead Charlotte. I dump out the contents of my backpack and put on every piece of clothing I can find, including my tuc and boots. I wrap my scarf around my entire face except my eyes. I turn on every light in the room. And I lay on (not in) the bed drifting between sleep and wakefulness for the next 7 hours.
Rest in peace, Charlotte. Thank you for a lovely evening.
(Objects in photo may appear smaller than in real life. Seriously. I should’ve set something beside this beast for scale).
Pack light. Any smart touring artist’s mantra, an art i’m finally starting to master.
I did not factor yogurt into my plan.
Context: my slighty-larger-than-carry-on-sized suitcase (for two months on the road - that deserves a high five) is safely stowed at my manager’s office on the other side of London. I am carrying only a backpack with basic essentials.
I pop into a supermarket and whilst standing examining the vegetable options a woman drops a huge tub of yogurt on the floor, which explodes all over my (only) pair of jeans…which are of course jet black. Embarrassed, she looks me up and down and then kind of skulks off while I am left examining my now black+white spotted jeans. Well shit. But shit happens, no biggie.
Fast forward to the next morning. I’m in a flat on the top floor of a building, scrubbing said jeans in the sink while wearing my only other ‘bottoms’, teensy weensy (and definitely at the end of their life) sleep shorts. It’s a glorious sunny/windy day in London, and I mosey out onto the rooftoop to hang my now presentable pants in the sun to dry before I have to take off for a meeting. I use clips to pin them nice and tightly to the railing, with the majority of them hanging on the inside of the patio.
Fast forward two hours (an ambitious drying-time by london standards, I know) —>
I am showered and ready to go to my meeting. I pop out onto the roof for my pants. No pants. Huh? NO PANTS!! I frantically look around the roof. Nada.
With a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach I slowly lean over the railing.
Hello only pair of pants.
Hello only pair of pants sprawled in the next door neighbour’s garden 4 stories down.
Hello garden that is completely walled on all sides.
Hello garden with no entrance except through someone’s house. Whose house? Hell, I don’t know. There are 5-6 flats in each building.
I am now pants-less in London. Excellent.
Lil Monkey dance. (Taken with Instagram at Lake Hollywood Castle)