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Bon voyage, England

Wednesday 23rd August 2017

Holidays are as rare as hens teeth for musicians.

We certainly get to travel a lot, and although it doesn't always feel like 'work' there are certain responsibilities that come with gigging abroad which stop us from getting into that relaxed holiday feeling. (Anyone who has ever attempted to discuss the intricacies of hiring a PA system in Italian will attest to this)! This industry is seasonal, and work is primarily on weekends. So in short, we don't get out much.

But every rule has its exceptions and every dog will have its day; this year an opportunity presented itself which was too good to refuse. We had all been invited to Saumur, France for a friends festival-style wedding. A weekend of sunshine and swimming, a good old rural knees up. To make it worthwhile we also thought to bolt on a few days afterward to take some r&r in a gite and finish with a little explore of Paris. C'est fantastique!

Sun cream. Check.

Swimming shorts. Check.

After picking up our rental car in central Paris we navigated our way out of the city, (an exercise that was quite frankly terrifying!) hit the open road and worked our way down to the wedding. The first few days were a blurred, boozy whirlwind of bbqs, dancing and friends. Camped in between a huge lake and a river, the setting couldn't have been more idyllic. And luckily, no neighbours for miles!

After the knot had been tied, off we trotted to the Loire valley, a land of huge skies, sweeping vinyards and slumbering villages; even the roosters seem to take Sunday off around here. Now us three are no longer 22 year olds looking for a whole week of wild nights out and, over time, wants and needs change. Make me choose, for example, between a sambuca and a saint agur and the results will clearly indicate which side of 30 I'm on.

And so we sat. Sat and ate, sat and drank, sat and played cards. A few times we even managed to drag ourselves to the pool... all of 50ft away.... This was from the Garfield school of vacations.

It didn't take long, however, for the itch to start; we wanted to get back to work. In anyone's estimation, tipsily chipping away at a never ending cheese board is a lovely way to spend a summer afternoon. But music can exhibit a special kind of hold on you and once that particular itch gets going, it won't stop until you scratch it.

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