Friday, January 4, 2019

are you ready

yeah, so, i'd be remiss if i didn't devote a whole blog post to explaining my plans for june this year:

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

it's as simple as what you'd expect: what i've been talking about and preparing for since 2017 is finally getting underway. rammstein's touring europe from may til august.

in case you don't follow me on twitter and have missed my excited ramblings/updates about this, the new album (their first since 2009!) is apparently coming out in april, and our good german metal dads are embarking on a summer stadium tour across europe. all this was announced back in october, with the fanclub presale happening literally, like, less than a week later.

smash cut to a bleary-eyed me getting up at 4 a.m. to log on to the european ticket site the very second they went on sale (at a respectable 10 a.m. germany time, mind you).

not that this was an easy process; for some reason, the ticket website absolutely refused to accept my credit card, and even though i kept trying and trying, the website eventually dumped me out and released all my tickets. but i wasn't going to give up that easily, and somehow - somehow - i finally managed to eke out a decent ticket for the berlin concert, which was my #1 priority. but i didn't want to make the trip to go to just one concert, which lead to me also wading back into the fray to secure a ticket for copenhagen as well, which is scheduled for a few days before berlin.

however, i was unaware that, due to these being shows at football stadiums, paying a premium doesn't get you front row space - it gets you seats. i mean, probably good seats, but still - seats?? i didn't want to be fucking seated for these shows. so it may have been too late to go back and course-correct berlin and copenhagen, but i was determined to at least get one show where i could elbow my way to front row, my favourite place in the world. and that's how i ended up with a ticket to their show in rotterdam. i at least got standing for that, thank god.

so to sum up, here's where i'm heading and what i'm doing there:

june 16 - ostseestadion, rostock, germany
rostock was actually a ticket i got on a whim, but not really. for whatever reason, the rostock show is the one that like 20-30 members of the fanclub are all attending, and i was encouraged to come too. but one tiny thing stood in the way: tickets were sold out. (in fact, tickets for the majority of the tour sold out within hours of general sale.)

the good thing, though, was that every so often the ticketing site would release a few random extra tickets for sale for a few random concerts on the schedule. i was lucky enough to have one of fanclub members i met at the berlin meetup keeping an eye out for me, and one night he messaged me late to tell me that rostock tickets were available again. within minutes, i was going to my fourth concert on the tour. (i got standing room for this one too, an extra bonus!)

the other "fun" detail is that this is largely the german side of the fanclub attending, and i have no goddamn clue if my spoken german is going to be good enough. but considering how flattered i am that i was even invited, i'm gonna definitely try my hardest. (there's apparently going to be a meetup or party of some form in the days before or after the concert, so i'll be put to the test as the novelty canadian visitor for the tour, eeeeeeep) so, this is where i start: fly in to berlin, either i catch a ride with one of the other fanclub members or take the bus an hour north to rostock, and off we go.

june 19 - telia parken, copenhagen, denmark
everyone's been telling me that copenhagen is expensive as hell, so i plan on only staying here a couple nights and heading off to berlin as soon as i possibly can (also because that means more time in berlin!). also apparently it takes like five hours to get from rostock to copenhagen, but i gotta do it. i'm seated for this show too, sigh.

june 22 - olympiastadion, berlin, germany
this is it: the hometown show, essentially, and most likely the hottest ticket on the tour. honestly, i'm just so fucking grateful that i even managed to snag a ticket, especially given my troubles with the ticketing website. i'm going to likely be in berlin from june 20 to 24, and having this show right in the middle is perfect. also, although i bitch about the fact that i have a seated ticket for this one, it'll likely work in my favour - i won't have to line up at the venue at the crack of dawn, and i'll have time to hit up the rammsteinstore beforehand, if it's open. silver linings. and like i said, i am insanely thankful i'm going to this one. seeing rammstein play a concert at berlin's olympic stadium has always been the dream, and this is the one everyone wanted. (most of us were greedy and wanted two berlin shows - munich got two! - but no dice)

june 25 - de kuip, rotterdam, the netherlands
as i detailed in the saga of my grabbing tickets at 4 a.m., the rotterdam show was my original bonus show (before rostock happened, that is) simply because i wanted at least one show where i could be standing (ideally up front, where i belong). i had legit gone back to bed before thinking on it, deciding nope, fuck it, and getting back up and on the website to see where else i could go. rotterdam was the only logical choice, since rostock had already sold out at that point and i figured it'd be easy enough to stay a few extra days past berlin.

another long commute here - apparently it's like a seven-hour bus ride from berlin to rotterdam - but a quick flight is only doable if i end up with a big windfall of money between now and then. having to bus it will be far more likely, and possibly even a respite. after the insane whirlwind of berlin, i'll probably just sleep the whole way.

as for amsterdam, there isn't a rammstein concert taking place there, but it's going to be part of my trip anyway. for one, i'd rather fly back to toronto from amsterdam than rotterdam, and for two, i've always wanted to see amsterdam, and since it's right there, why not? my father raves about how much he loves that city, especially in the summer, and has already been loading me up with recommendations for sightseeing. true, i might actually be death walking at this point of my trip, but there's no reason to pass up one of the great cities.

i haven't mentioned paris here, because it's still an iffy pipe dream - there are two shows in paris, both of which are currently sold out (ticket resales start in march), taking place on june 28 and 29 at la défense arena. even if i did luck out with a ticket to one, it would mean staying additional time in europe, bringing my total trip length up to three weeks instead of just two. i may be saving up for this trip, but i'm not sure i have that much money. (the tickets themselves were expensive enough, and now i have to think about flight costs, airbnbs, bus/trains, food, booze, merch, and so on - and for three whole weeks? yikes)

yet "paris?" remains on my list because honestly? for me, seeing rammstein play paris may be an even bigger dream than seeing them play berlin. ever since i fell back in love with this band by watching the rammstein: paris concert film, i've wanted to see them play there. the french love them and i want to be a part of that, too.

regardless, i'm back in toronto by the end of the month, which is...uh, only the end of the first leg of their tour, actually. so what i'm saying is that there's an entirely good possibility that i get home, feel mopey with post-tour depression all of july, and end up heading back for the final leg in august (finland, norway, sweden, vienna). maybe i am insane? who knows! but probably. (also worth noting that apparently they're touring north america next year - they've said in interviews that they're going to be touring for the next three years straight - so this is definitely not the end of my plans)

honestly, this is nuts. i know it is. it's a hell of a trek to undertake by yourself, everything from the planning to the booking to actually getting out there and doing it alone. sure, i'm going to be meeting friends at all the shows - being an active member of the fanclub has really helped with recognition, plus like i said, the weird novelty of being a solo canadian who's making the trek - but the actual travelling-around-europe part, i'm doing on my own. and i'd like to think i'll be okay, since it's not like i'm a broke college student backpacking or anything, but overseas travel is still very new for me, especially in non-english countries. but, this is what i wanted - what i've wanted for two years now. time to put up or shut up (and the second option is not an option - i already have all four tickets in hand).

and for sure, there's going to be adventures. come on - it's me, back following a band on tour. it doesn't matter how old the band is or how old their general fanbase is - of course there's going to be adventures with me. it never follows far behind.

so that's the thing: the world is a little bit shit these days, and my strongest recommendation is that if you find something you love, something that truly brings you ridiculous joy, then you should do everything you can to follow that love. (unless it's like, murdering people. don't murder!!) you gotta do it unabashedly and unafraid of what people will think, and you have to do it for yourself. that's what i'm doing.

that's all! and june will be here before we know it. i'll definitely be giving periodic updates into how the trip planning is going, and you can bet there'll be a ton of recap posts afterwards. but for now, i need coffee.

[ music | none ]