Monday, May 26, 2008

St. Petersburg Last weekend

Had a pretty heavy one last weekend, or guess its kinda 2 weeks ago - been slacking on the blog... sorry folks...

Did St. Petersburg on Friday night for my mate Stas' Birthday - at a cool, smaller venue called 'Friday Club'. Was super hot in there, but a well up for it crowd so I had a laugh. The little vip backstage area was fun - they'd bought a GIANT bottle of Johnny Walker or some kind of whisky - it was SOOO big it came on a crane-like device to help tip it over to pour it. Mad. I managed to get some decent wine (South African Chenin Blanc is still smashing it) so was happy. Whisky is too strong for The B.

Stas with some random Birthday present...

Birthday Paparazzi...

Was pretty mashed though - there's not many direct flights from Heathrow to St. Petersburg, and with my routing needing to get me to Vienna the next day, the only itinerary that would work involved getting the 6am flight to Russia - so my body clock was totally f&*ked. Flew straight to Vienna the next day, although I gotta say, St. Petersburg airport is the slowest, most badly organised, beurocratically bogged down pile of shit airport I've ever had the displeasure of flying out of. 

Massive lines all over the place, first just to get to the check in area, you get your documents checked and bags scanned. The whole terminal entry area was made up of 4 or 5 HUGE lines just snaking randomly around the hall. No signs telling you which was which, no people helping or directing you. No announcements. And most of the passengers are Ryanair-types that haven't got a clue. They think T5 is bad? Lame. Anyway, I scoped it out and picked the shorter line and eventually made it in - flashed my nice card and got in the Business class line.

St. Petersburg Airport dumbass massive lines

Then waited another 30 mins in the Passport checking line. Kids crying etc etc. Got to the Business lounge to grab some free food... Rough. Funny crackers, and get this, cheese - just those slices you get wrapped individually in plastic wrap to put on your burger or whatever. T5 wins again! Then when they announce its boarding time the lady says I have to just push into the line (yes theres ANOTHER one) for another security scan - which is literally taking up the whole departures area. I'm like 'fuck that - you're taking me there' (politely) so I made the Business class lounge lady escort me to the front of the line so I wouldn't get lynched by the angry Saga Holidays ppl and drunk Rusky business men! Anyway it worked and I lived happily ever after, but man, Russian Airports are really sucking for me at the moment - apart from maybe Moscow - they've sorted out DME recently.

I digress.

Vienna was cool too - I played at the Zoo Club - I think I've played there in the past but forgotten what it looked like. Oh yeah I do remember - they said it used to be a Gypsy owned place where they did massive weddings, and like the last time it was used for that there were about 40 knife-related injuries over the 2 day event! Hah! Ravers are more peaceful... They showed me photos of all the illegal modifications that had been done to the building before it got turned into the club - the Gypsy guys had built some massive kitchen - totally dangerous and fire hazard stylee against regulations with this huge Pig Roaster Spit Roast thing and all sorts. Bizarre.

Oh God and the Vienna hotel room. Man. I actually changed my flight so I could just get out of there and not even try to sleep - got the FIRST flight back to London. The Hotel Mercure in Vienna FYI. I think they gave me the last room in the hotel cos I was probably the last person to arrive that day (some big AIDS charity concert on in town) and man, that was blatently the WORST room I've ever been in in Europe, if not the world. Supposed to be a 4 star hotel, and this room was way smaller than my little room when I was a student. On the top floor, with a sloping roof, little single bed, and literally no room to swing a cat - and SOOOO hot. It was a pretty humid day, but only May so obviously not that bad, but I guess all the heat was just rising up the building and hitting John B in the room! Even though it was on the 7th floor, when you opened the window to get air in it was super loud from the road, next to the Railway station, and the fan for the room literally had no place to sit - and the cable wasnt long enough to get it near the window to blow the air in. Nightmare. So yeah, sucked. I wrote them a letter telling them to turn that room into a stock cupboard or something! 

Hotel Mercure Vienna - supposidely 4 Star room. Hot like a sauna baybeee.

I'm still looking for decent photos from those 2 gigs so if any of you lot have em, chuck them over in an email ya?!

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