21 Jan 2004 - Nicko - Back on the road

On board flight from Montreal to Quebec.
Time: 1:30pm.

Well, well, well,
How the blazes are you all?
I’m doing very well today thank you!

As you will have gathered, I have been procrastinating over the last few weeks. No excuses other than I have been having way too much fun and being lazy as well, but I have been thinking of you all, honest I have.

Where to begin!

After New Year, which by the way boys and girls I hope you all had the most splendid time, it was time to get back on a plane and get to rockin' again. Our first show was in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on the 11th of January. I left me drum in Florida on the 9th and made me way to Miami for a night flight down to Argentina. It was a United Airlines flight and it was very nice indeed. I arrived at 10-30am on the 10th. I was meet at the airport and ushered into a VIP room. I was there for about 10 minutes when Bruce arrived. He had flown from Blighty and he also had had a pleasant trip. We had a couple of coffees while we waited for our passports to be processed. It didn’t take very long before we were on our way to the hotel. When we arrived at the hotel I signed a few autographs and then made me way to me room. I had a wee siesta and then got up and went for a stroll. I had got about 2 hundred yards from the hotel and was met by some fans that gave me a few gifts. It was very sweet of them. I had a bottle of wine and some Matte, a hot beverage native to Argentina, it has a special cup and drinking straw that you use.
Thank you to my friends for the gifts.

I decided to go back to the hotel and drop off the presents. I then went to the bar and had a couple of drinks with the crew.
In the evening we went to a very nice restaurant with our friends from EMI Argentina. We were all there and had a most splendid evening. Great food, great company, and a most splendid, Argentinean wine. A Cabernet Merlot from Runiti.
Lovely stuff it is too.
Thank you to Cecilia and our friends from EMI for a great evening.

After dinner we went back to the hotel and met with some of the crew at the bar. I had a wee nightcap and made me way to bed.
The next day we had a show. We were all feeling a little nervous, as we had not played for close to three weeks. We arrived at the gig and got ready for the sold out show. There were around 45 thousand fans at the sports stadium. We hit the stage at around 9:15pm and we had a doozey of a show. It was really rockin.
Not bad for three weeks off I can tell you. After the gig we did a runner back too the hotel and after a shower we all met in the bar.
Our promoter for the Argentina and Chile show was there, his name is Franchesco. We arranged to meet the next day off in Chile for a wee game of golf.

The next morning we headed out to the airport for our trip to Santiago. We arrived into Chile at about mid afternoon.
I checked in and then went for a spot of lunch and then went to me room for a wee rest.
In the evening we had a dinner at the poolside restaurant at the hotel. Our record company were in the chair. Great evening it was as well. Some of our crew were eating there so after dinner we had a few libations with them. I headed back to me room and went to bed.
I had arranged to meet with Franchesco at 11am down in the lobby.
He arrived and we headed over to his golf club. He had loaned me some sticks that belonged to his father and a pair of his dad’s shoes as well, only problem was that they were a size too big. It’s times like this that you wish you had brought your own clubs and stuff. Oh well I was out on a most splendid golf course.
We had a great game and I shot really well all considered. I was 9 over for the round. We had a great time.
After the game I went back to the hotel and had a rest. That evening we played a show. It was blazing the guys were fired up and we rocked big time. Thank you to all our fans down in South America you are truly the best.

The next day we were flying to Rio. We made the flight and ended up at the hotel for early evening.
I went straight to the concierge and made a tee time for the next day. I had arranged to take Pete my drum tech out for a round. As it happened Rod joined us for a 1 o'clock tee off. We had a great round and some fantastic moments of brilliance. A most wonderful afternoon was had. After the round we decided to go into the clubhouse for a beer. Rod has been on a booze and food diet but as it was such a special day that we had he decided to have just the ONE [yes right] beer. After we had finished our drink we got into a cab and headed back to the hotel. Now on the way we all decided that we would like to have another beer, so we stopped at one of the many beach side shacks that serve liquid refreshments and ordered a beer each. A couple of our crew were sitting enjoying a couple of beers and taking in the wonderful view and we sat with them. We had a few beers and then Gonzo, Squidword, and Geezer Gadd were with us. Then along came Mr Ian Day, so we got everyone to buy the beers. It was a hoot and after the drinks we decided to head back to the room.

In the evening we were having dinner with the record company. We went out to a restaurant where we had dinner the last time we were in Rio. If you boys and girls have seen the Rock in Rio DVD you will have no doubt seen the piece were we are having a good old food fight, well this was in the same place. I’m surprised that they had us back. I can tell you.
We had a great dinner.
After which I decided to have a cigar. I went out to the lobby with Davey, [who also had a stoggie] to smoke it. While we were standing there we noticed a small room off to our left that had a bar inside it and two guys playing some great tunes. Davey and I split into the room and found a table and sat down and watched these two guys playing There was one guy playing the guitar and the other was playing a ‘Kin box type of percussion instrument. They were really cool. Davey and I sat and got absolutely smashed. Well, it was the waiters fault you see, he kept bringing us bottles of wine, no problem there then.

Inevitably I was asked to join in on the old bongos, which I jumped at. I jammed a few tunes with the guys and then joined Davey back at our table. After a wee while Bruce joined us. The rest of the party had departed back to the hotel.
Well, you can imagine what happened can’t you?
Maybe not.
Well, it’s like this. Bruce ends up on this tiny stage with the bongos with Davey on the guitar. They were jamming a blues riff, when after a while I ended up crabbing the microphone and I joined in ‘Kin singing. You would not have believed this.
We had a blast and all the people sitting in the room had a whale of a time.

When we arrived back at the hotel I was greeted by Stefano my dear lost friend, Stenio’s brother.
Stenio was murdered last year.
I was very happy to see Stefano. We made plans to have lunch the following day with his mother, Juana, and brother Stanley.
We meet at 3pm at the Turanga golf club. Stenio loved to play at this course and he lived just over the road from the club. We had a lovely lunch and we talked and told stories of our memories and love for son and a dear friend departed. Love to you all the Zaig family.

That evening we had a show in Rio. Stefano and Stanley came and the evening was fantastic. The fans are wild down here I can tell you! Great show and we all had a very good time. After the show I met Stef, and Stanley at the hotel bar. I wasn’t drinking this evening and Stefano was on me case all night to take a beer with him, but I stayed firm and just had a fruit juice.
At a little after 2am, I said farewell to my guests and headed up to bed

Well, thats it from me for this diary.
Stay safe boys and girls.
God bless you all.

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