imagine mid-February: cold, grey and rainy days have started to be the norm. it is Saturday and we are on our way to Hannover, some by train, others by car. everybody seems extremely nervous and excited at the same time. apart from us there will be seven other bands, six as part of the contest and one to pass the time until the voting is over. it is the other bandcontest we decided to take part in. the Emergenza bandcontest – apparently the “biggest newcomer bandfestival of the world”. at least that’s what it says on their website.
it was going to be the very first gig with all of us together on stage – a band debut we had been preparing for for some time. and it worked! we went on stage. we played our songs. we rocked. and we were voted third and therefore managed to continue on into the semifinals. and I realized, man, I love our band!
a couple of weeks ago my phone died. literally. I looked it up online. it’s called: “sudden death” and happened out of the blue. well, maybe not exactly out of the blue. it had been switching itself off randomly, but that happened maybe once a week. and to be honest, it could have been me pressing some buttons for too long… on this particular day (no, I don’t remember when exactly all life was sucked out of my precious cell phone), it just turned itself off and stayed that way. I tried everything possible (there is extensive knowledge about these things floating around on the world wide web, especially in tech nerd forums – that’s where I learned the name for it, too). there was nothing to be done.
during the time all this occured, I was not a in good spot anyway. okay, that’s a total understatement. I was majorly depressed. so I might actually not have tried everything possible to save the phone. instead, I might have just watched all seasons of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – on the brighter side, I also didn’t really care. it was just the last straw in a series of events I was too down to handle. I just collapsed alongside my phone. so for a week or two I was phoneless and contactless and nobody even knew. I was just glad I didn’t have to deal with it.
now I do, though. thankfully, someone had a spare phone for me. well, yeah, obviously all the contacts are gone and I missed quite a lot of appointments that were only stored on the calender on my phone, but I can communicate again. I don’t, though. mainly because this phone is so slow it makes me seriously aggressive. if I (by some miracle) manage to text someone, it’s reduced to emojis or two to three letter words. usually I have to call people back cause the phone reacts so slowly that when I try to push the little green button that appears on my display, the other person has already hung up or talked to my mailbox. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.
on the upside: I am blogging again.
it is strange: every time I’ve been absent from regular blogging activities it feels like so freaking much has happened. and it has. but it is the same every time I’ve been gone for a while. it makes me realize that life is a constant roller coaster, not in a bad way. it just keeps you on your toes. and it is a bit tough. rough. exhausting.
I am out of a job. well, not exactly. in one and a half weeks I will be out of a job. until then I spend my days at home doing whatever I want while looking for new work. it’s been a while since I have made a decision like this: I have no idea what to do next. and I know that I have to find something to pay my bills with or I will run out of money. and then I’d have to move out of my new appartement. haven’t even lived here half a year. most of my life I had some sort of back-up plan, you know: you quit a job when you already have another one lined up. or you move to another city when you’ve already found an apartment. and I could have done that this time. but I knew I didn’t want to do what they had to offer me anymore. so I made a decision against the job. not for security.
and the most interesting part is that I don’t actually care. I am not stressed out. I am not panicking because my life might fall apart soon. I just read job advertisements for an hour a day and maybe send out an application and then I continue doing what I’ve been doing – which includes a lot of nothing, I suppose. but it is quite enjoyable. it is not fulfillment or, I dunno, about having an epiphany. life is no sugarlicking. it’s just enjoying my days. that’s all. this is no big overwhelming emotional situation. this is no freak out. I think, yeah, I think this is happiness.
it’s the end of January. it’s cold. it’s dark. and we are in this cozy place stuffed with a random collection of comfortable upholstery facing the small stage (behind-the-scenes pictures as usual on Caan & Bittes’ instagram).
the huge space is ready to be filled with people. and it does fill up. more than anyone expected. extra chairs are constantly brought up from downstairs. someone decides to carry up another couch forgotten in the basement. one has to jump over chairs and climb over people to get anywhere. I see primary school kids, teenagers, middle aged folks, some college students and next to me a couple in their eighties. they think they might be the oldest around. it is wonderful.
we get on stage, just three of us this time. acoustic guitar and voices. simple. everyone is quiet, staring at us. you could hear a pin drop. unbelievable. everybody wants to know what we got. so we perform some songs and the applause is incredible. they like our stuff. and our new background singer visibly relaxes. it’s her first time on stage with us.
then it is time for what everybody actually came for: the poetry slam. the contestants are very different kind of people. reflecting the audience. also very different performances. such diversity. I am enjoying every minute of it. just like everybody else, still listening quietly.
after the break we are on again. another few songs. I am happy.
this, I would do again.
this one has been on my to do list for some months now…
I think it must have been sometime at the end of October last year when we went to Jochems Kneipe after a week of studio time during which we were finishing our first album. it had been a long and exhausting week, heaps of fun of course, but tiring nonetheless. the wonderful owner of the CMC recording studio had organized us a gig in this small music pub a couple of kilometres away.
and, whatdyasay, the gig was fantastic!
even though there was only a small crowd present, people were super appreciative and at the audiences request we ended up starting with the first set again after we had finished the last one. it felt great to perform in front of this crowd and we were told to definitely come back. with the whole band. which we are surely gonig to do (I suppose).
we stayed quite a while after we were done, talking to some people who had listened to us, eating bread with mustard (actually quite tasty), hearing so much about Jochems 40 plus years as a music club owner (apparently he fucking had Nirvana play at his joint back in the day), solving riddles and playing chess.
definitely a night to remember!
I talked to a friend recently, wishing her a happy new year and being all excited about a fresh start into a fresh 2018. she thought it hilarious that this illusion exists in our spheres that something special would actually start on New Year’s day. “”, she said. we don’t need to wait for its eve to change our habits, to change our lives, to change ourselves. every day can be used for that. heck, every moment is a new start into something different. one could even go further and say we can’t really make a cut anyway. we are just progressing from something that has been developed beforehand.
it was particularly obvious that this moment when we cheer to our new resolutions is pretty random when I was chatting with friends of mine from different time zones. while I was still making dinner one of them had already slept through ten hours of beauty sleep into the new year while another was still out partying. and when I later looked at the firework display from my balcony I got a text from a friend who just got up and having forgotten about the time difference was asking whether I was up for a skype date.
nonetheless, I LOVE new beginnings and resolutions and wishes and goals. it feels refreshing to give in to this illusion and just roll with it. I am energized and basically feel like I could achieve literally anything this year.
so here is to new beginnings!
for weeks I have either been travelling in wifi free zones or stayed at home where apparently the internet doesn’t work.
for this reason, I am currently spending heaps of time at the library. even more than I usually already do. in the mornings I pack my backpack full of food, my notebook, paper, pens and my to do list (not to forget all those endless movies and cds and books I borrowed and need to return). then I take a short walk through busy streets until I reach one of my favorite places in the city: the library.
a city library is very different from a university library. the latter is so earnest – and dull in a way. I prefer the atmosphere here much more. of course, heaps of people are working here, too, they sit at the various desks and concentrate hard on whatever they want or need to concentrate on. but you also find kids reading each other stories on those tiny chairs and comfy couches, people talking about yesterday’s news, people on huge wing chairs absorbed by exciting mystery novels, people laughing, people sharing their discoveries. you won’t get an angry “shhh” or a killer stare for turning the pages too loudly.
I could stay here all day, writing on my blog, researching, trying to find a new appartment. but now I am hungry and tired and I want to go home. so I’ll browse through the movie section and then I’ll come back tomorrow. for sure.