Taking the Fun Out of Touring

Apparently, Wednesday’s public sector workers strike in the UK is still scheduled to take place.  We are still scheduled to land at Heathrow Airport on Wednesday.  Many, many, many messages and emails have been exchanged between Rhonda and myself and between the two of us and friends.  The messages between us have consisted of two things:  listing our options and expressing frustration.  The messages to us have been suggestions of alternatives and good wishes for us.  Obviously, we appreciate everyone’s attempt to help the situation and people’s support. 

In summary, the problem is this.  The people who work at border controls, including those who work at customs at Heathrow are planning to strike, which will cause huge lines to get into the country as normal staff will be gone.  These huge lines could cause such a backup that people would not be allow to depart from their flights and planes would no longer be able to be used to actually transport new passengers.  Other flights would not be allowed to land as there would be no space for them, which would result in cancellations.  Obviously, we cannot control the negotiations between the unions and the government there.  Yet, we are seriously both hoping that a resolution takes place before this worst-case scenario comes to fruition.  So, what can we do to avoid this?  The answer, unfortunately, is not much. 

Rhonda and I are both busy people with responsibilities and commitments at home.  Neither one of us is able to travel a day earlier due to those responsibilities.  We tried, though.  We looked into it and tried to think of any and all possible alternatives, including leaving a day early and flying to different locations.  Unfortunately, for now, those options really aren’t possible for us.  It would be nice if we didn’t have those responsibilities, but we do.  Thus, for now, we are hoping that resolution takes place.  Our plan is to meet up in Chicago as originally scheduled.  We will hope that the problem has been fixed, isn’t as bad as they fear OR that the airlines can figure out a solution for us.  I, for one, am relieved that we have decided on a plan, even if it isn’t great.  It has been horribly stressful just to figure out what our plan was going to be.  I was spending a ton of time trying to figure out what to do.  My stress level has decreased since we made a decision.  Will it be the right one?  We don’t really know.  It might mean that our flight gets cancelled and that we really aren’t able to get there for any of the shows because there won’t be room for us on any upcoming flight.  On the other hand, it might mean that we worried for nothing or something in between these two possibilities.  I am glad that we will deal with the situation on Tuesday, together.  We will figure out what to do then when we are at the airport and when all of the circumstances are known. 

Now, I’m just tired.  I feel like I could sleep for days.  I didn’t expect to be exhausted now, before the tour even starts.  Yet, I am because of being so busy and because of being so stressed.  Here is another thing I know.  The fun of touring has been lost, to a great extent.  Obviously, I’m hoping that this is a temporary deal.  Only time will tell on that front.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I like planning for tours.  I like figuring out which flights to take, where to stay, how to get places, etc.  That’s fun.  It is like shopping.  It is also done, knowing that at the end of the day comes a huge reward.  A show.  A Duran Duran show.  In the course of all of our discussions surrounding Tuesday, we haven’t even mentioned the band or the show.  That to me is the worst part about this.  I have a hard time even remembering why I’m going in the first place.  I have a hard time even thinking about that reward at the end, the show.  I haven’t even been thinking about seeing Rhonda.  That is unacceptable. 

Here is what I know.  Touring is supposed to be fun.  It is supposed to be something to look forward to, something that keeps you going during the daily grind of life.  Yes, touring may contain problems or challenges but this isn’t right.  This time around was supposed to be good.  It wasn’t going to be like last time when we found out the shows were cancelled on the way to the airport.  Do I think that my mood surrounding the tour could be turned around?  Of course.  If/when we are able to get to Brighton, I’ll be excited for the show, to see/meet people, to be with Rhonda.  I’ll be thrilled to be some place new.  Maybe then, I will say that it was all worth it.  I sure hope so.

-A

5 thoughts on “Taking the Fun Out of Touring”

  1. I just have to say here that this is the last time I try to do something like this. There are just far too many variables involved when you try to tour in a different country, and I've got far too much going on here at home to worry about such things. It's not out of a lack of love, or anger – it's reality. If my flight is canceled on Tuesday – I'll fly back home and be done with it. Even I have my limits, and those have now been exceeded. -R

  2. Is there any way to fly into another European airport and take the train into England? It might add a few more steps in your travel process, but might end up saving time in the long run. Although there's always still a possibility that the strike can be called off, so have hope!

  3. @Rhonda-I can't see me wanting to tour another country ever again, either.

    @Robin-We have thought of that. The problem is that we are both leaving late on Tuesday and most other international flights to Europe are earlier in the day.

  4. I was thinking if you could fly into Paris and then take the Eurostar (only 2 hours to London) into England and then a train to Brighton would work. It all depends on flight schedules, though. The main Paris Eurostar station is pretty easy to get to from CDG, too, via the RER train. It's a lot of trains, but it's an option!

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