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Gone too soon

It’s 24 hours ago since it happened, and I’ve finally found words to post a blog about my thoughts on this. Michael Jackson – aka the King of Pop – has left his body, and is not with us anymore.

Anyone who has known me since my childhood/teenage years knows that I’ve always been a big fan of Jackson. And in honour of him, I’ll talk about my experiences with his music. It’s also too long ago I’ve been blogging, this is the longest gap between two posts – but here’s a good reason to write again.

I’m not sure how old I was when I discovered Michael’s music. Basically, I was a big lover of music, and I can mention a lot of names, that have been with me since early childhood – that’s music from Pink Floyd to Randy Crawford, to Supertramp to the Scorpions to Classical music (especially my beloved Debussy album) and: Michael Jackson.

As you see – these genres are so different from each other, and maybe Michael is the most different of these names I just mentioned.

It all started with a lonely moment a dark winter day. I was 11 years old (if I remember right), and I enjoyed my tea and listened to the radio, watching the snow falling. The first notes of “Who is it?” was played, and I listened to the voice and the music. That guy sang with such a passion, it went straight to my heart. They said “you listened to Michael Jackson….” – I had to find the album with that song! But until I found it, I started listening to everything else of his music, especially Thriller. The rythms went straight to my legs and feet, and I was dancing around. I loved it!

Thanks Michael, for those moments!

Years passed, and I slowly got the collection of Michael’s albums. Whenever I had money, I saved up for buying music – and I recieved “Bad” at a Christmas eve, from my uncle (by the name Michael, funnily enough). Another uncle gave me a voucher card for a music store, and I bought “Dangerous” – and there it was: Who is it!

I was a shy – very shy – teenager, and I always hated partys at school. The worst parts of it, was the dance floor! I hated dancing, and if a boy finally turned to me and asked for a dance, I wished I could turn myself invisible. That was just until Michael Jackson’s music thundered out of those speakers: I could all the steps, the moonwalk… I forgot my shyness and danced around.

Thanks Michael, for those moments!

In 1997, Michael Jackson was touring, and went to Denmark. Can you imagine a happy young fan being excited? Yes, and my Dad who thought I was a little too young to go to the “big and wild city” – Copenhagen – went with me. This happened at a time where him and I, who were always pals, found each other again after my parent’s divorce several years previously. I had been living with my mom, but now I felt the tide was turning, and moved in at my Dad’s house. And there we were, in Copenhagen. I was a country girl, and I thought the city was big indeed! But the mood was so warm all over the stadium, it was a wonderful summer evening.

The concert itself. Wow. How to describe that? If you said the word “concert” to me, I would relate to an intimate moment at a small venue filled with people, good mood and great music. This was 52.000 people packed at the stadium – and the biggest and most hard-working band I had ever seen, an amazing number of dancers, and not to forget all the effects! It was more a “show” than a concert, if you can follow me? The music of course was outstanding…but followed with the show, I was overwhelmed for weeks! I was impressed by Michael. Even though the venue was so enormous, he somehow managed to reach us all – to every corner of the stadium.

Thanks Michael, for these moments!

As years passed and I grew older, it became more rare that I listened to his music. I still liked it, but my interests changed a bit. I don’t know why, really, but people change. I still read the papers when there were news about him, and it was a pain in my heart to see it was mostly bad news. I realised that he probably wouldn’t get very old.

His life story is so sad – yes he got fame, success and everything, but it had a price: he never had the chance to find himself and learn whom he was. Why change the way he looked so often? What would he change and what was it he wished to become?

I’ll never know. But I do know he gave us music, that will be remembered and loved.

All my thoughts and condolences to his children, family and friends.

Rest in peace, Michael Jackson.

And thanks again for all the wonderful moments.

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Arrrrrrgh!!!

Sorry for starting this blog with shouting like this. It’s just that I’m preparing for the challenges of 2009 and 2010. I only need to pass a few tests in June to enter the career I’ve always dreamt of. I’ll learn how to navigate a ship, and eventually flying a helicopter at sea. My dream is to fly a rescue helicopter someday… or just flying helicopters around the Faroe Islands. Then I will transport people, goods, animals, hay, oil barrels, tourists and musicians around the islands. Or I’ll end up working at the beautiful ocean on a ship.

All that starts in August – if I pass, and I’m pretty sure I will.

Before that comes April, May, June, July – and I have to find out how to spend my time wisely before starting this education, that will take place in Denmark.

That’s the tough part of it. I’ll have to let go of a lot of things to do what I really want, and I’ll be a lot away from home – luckily, my boyfriend is very supportive, and thinks he has a very tough, brave and cool girlfriend. Awwww… even action girls can blush 😆

Anyway. I can spend spring/early summer in the Faroes, and summer in Denmark, since I have to go there anyway in June for that test. Or vice versa. Spend spring in Denmark, then go home after the tests, and enjoy the incredibly beautiful Faroese summer.

And now a new question has arrived: There’s a Roger Hodgson concert coming up in Aachen in August, and some friends tries to convince me to go – it’s not “just” another RH gig. It’s an orchestra show! And I’m ready to go, to get another great concert experience and spend time with good friends.

Realising that I’ll be pretty busy next year, where I’ll spend a lot of time at sea, I think I’ll have to attend that concert – it will take a long time before I have time for that again.

So Anina has convinced Anina, that she has to attend that concert, and spend a weekend in Germany.

But that will mean: not much money for vacations during summer. Dah!

That’s why I can’t wait to start that new career, after many years of studying history and Nordic Litterature I’ve realised it’s pretty hard finding a job where I can use a title called Master of Arts, and after many years on low-budget and never ending financial problems (could be worse though, as I’ve always have had just enough money to have fun), I’ll suddenly have a nice income. But no time to spend money. Nevermind, saving is much better.

Ok… Now I’m just rambling on about career and decisions, but what I’m trying to say is just: what to do now?

I think I’ll go back to the Faroes, finish my thesis there, and come back to Denmark along with my boyfriend in June.
Another thing is: I have planned a one-week long hike in the mountains, and I just can’t wait to go.

I’ll go on that hike in the end of May/beginning of June, where it’s bright 24 hours a day. Perfect time to gather thoughts and mind before big challenges. I have sometimes spent days on my own in nature, but one week in the mountains is very special, and the best vacation I can imagine. And I really need to gather my thoughts and find myself again.

At least: this time I’m not confused and indecisive because of depressions like last year. This time, I’m so happy and optimistic about everything. I’m so optimistic that you could call me impatient: I can’t wait for any of it to happen! Decisions now, is just a matter of where and when, time, and of course trying to find out what’s important and what’s not.

Talking about 2009, it has already been a fantastic year. It was the year when a door opened to follow a great dream, and I had a fantastic trip to Nurnberg, Germany as already described in my blog.

And I have a few things I look forward to, a few things I’m nervous about, and a few things I don’t know what to do about.

Said with less words – it’s an amazing feeling of freedom to do what I want, and still be able to take care of my families in Denmark and the Faroe Islands in the future. I feel strong and happy. I’m happily saying goodbye to a miserable year, and saying hello to a new year of possibilities.

I’ll end this blablabla-blog with a few pictures from the Faroe Islands – I’m hoping to get that helicopter certificate someday, to have views like these every day at work in the future 😉

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It’s Monday, and weekend is over. But this weekend was not like any other – actually, it has to be one of the best of my life! I mean – you can always go to concerts, you can always travel for fun, and you can always meet up with friends.

But doing these things at the same time? That was what I did this weekend, all three activities. And it was not “just friends” or “just a concert” or “just a weekend trip” It was the meeting of a bunch of really close cyber-friends, who have this in common, that they love a very special artist. The name of that artist is: Roger Hodgson.

And what can one do, when these friends goes to Nurnberg, Germany, to meet up, and experience yet another wonderful concert with Roger Hodgson? The answer is obvious: buy a ticket, and GO!

And so I did. I travelled by ship from the Faroe Islands a week before, to make sure that bad weather wouldn’t keep me stucked in the Faroes – but there were no need to worry. Weather was fantastic all the way, and after two days I found myself in Denmark. And when Thursday evening arrived, I hopped on a train to Nurnberg – and soon I found myself in Nurnberg on a sunny, beautiful Friday morning. I could finally relax and enjoy the thought of what was about to happen.

We planned meeting up at the restaurant “Sausalitos” at 1 pm, and one by one, people arrived, and we all recognised each other instantly, even though this was our first time together in “real life.”

You can probably imagine all the hugs, handshakes, smiles, hugs again and laughs that were shared that moment, and when all had arrived, we had dinner and raised our glasses for loud cheers! – lifting glass with one hand, photographing with the other. Even our meals – pretty generous potions we all agreed – were photographed.

Time was flying, and we were about to leave at 4pm for another special event: we had been invited to sound check. And so we stood there all of us – some of Roger’s biggest fans from all corners of Europe. Mick from Ireland, Sabine and George from Malta, Christine from Austria, Sylvia from Switzerland, myself from the Faroe Islands, and not to forget all the German fans who had travelled from their corners of Germany.

Christine had made a banner showing a big “Happy Birthday Roger!”, that we all signed while waiting for Roger to arrive for sound check – more about that banner later!

When Roger arrived we went to the hall, and there we sat comfortably, excited and happy – we had been asked if we had any special requests for a song during sound check, and Claudia and I asked for “The Awakening” – and he played it. I love that song – I was hoping he would play it in concert, knowing he probably wouldn’t, so this was a special bonus. He also played a new song “Teach Me to Love Again” – and Roger, if you ever read this: Thanks for playing the Awakening for us, and your new song is so beautiful!

Or maybe I should rather write thanks again, as we had the opportunity to thank Roger personally, which we all did. He asked us if we liked the new song – and I remember myself saying that I loved this song, especially the piano playing/sax combination. I stood there thinking that I was going to hear it again later – and felt very lucky to be part of this very special, International meet’n greet. Thank you, Linda and Roger, from the bottom of my heart, to make this possible!

At this special meeting, we also had the opportunity to hand him a very special birthday card. It had been circulating the world, all the way from Malta, cross Europe, to the USA. Canada/New Foundland – and back to Germany, so we could give him the card with all these greetings. This too was a special moment.

And all too soon the sound check was over, and we all went to the nearby hotel’s lounge enjoying a drink or two, before the show would begin.

“When you’re up on stage it’s so unbelievable!”

I have already spent many words on describing the trip to Nurnberg – and I could spend even more on the concert itself. It was….FAN-tastic!¨

From beginning to the end – it was magical. One thing is that I never, ever will grow tired of these songs that have been with me since childhood, another is hearing them live, and a third thing is that Roger’s voice seems to be better than ever – and Aaron impressed us all by playing/multitasking even more instruments than usual! I know – you can read that in so many reviews that Roger’s voice is as good as always, maybe even stronger. But it IS true! I have attended several concerts since 2006, and they were always great – but this concert is without a doubt the best of all of those I’ve attended.

What makes a concert so wonderful anyway? Is it Roger’s wonderful voice, beautiful compositions, great lyrics? Is it the magic of two multi-talented guys playing together? Yes. That’s it! But there’s something more. You find great musicians everywhere, but nothing compares with Roger’s shows.

The answer is: Roger is a very ‘including’ artist, which means, he talks a lot to the audience, is joking, telling stories – and it is so clear that the audience love it, and Roger loves his fans and the audience.

And what makes this concert in Nurnberg, March 2009 so special, was also the presence of people from all over Europe, which he mentioned on stage. “Tonight we have guests all the way from Malta, Austria, Ireland.. even the Faroe Islands” that touched us all.. Especially one was touched, as the special guest that night was Sabine from Malta. “Sabine where are you?” Roger asked – “why don’t you stand up so the audience can applaud for you” – and I can only tell how happy I was, and only guess what she, and the other from our fan “fan-family” felt at that moment. It was so beautiful.

As I already mentioned, Roger had a new song on his repertoire. After opening the show with “Take the long way home”, “Give a Little Bit”, “Lovers in the Wind”, “Hide in your shell” – he played “Teach me to love again” He introduced the song, and said to the audience that this was a new song “and if you don’t clap, I won’t play it again next time…” and the audience started clapping instantly! “Sometimes I’m amazed about the things, that come out of my mouth. Okay this is the song – it’s called ‘Teach me to love again’.”
Of course, a new song is always welcome. And also after playing the song, the applause was overwhelming. It was clear – the audience truly loved it.

That new song is still – three days after – stuck in my head, and if I could only plug some sort of magic “head to stereo”-cable to my head, I’ll play it for all my friends and neighbours on my stereo. This is a song everyone just MUST hear. It’s heart touching and beautiful. He even played it twice, first on grand piano, then on keyboard.

There were many other surprises on the repertoire. One of them was that he played “A Soapbox Opera” – it made me incredibly happy to hear that song, and just as I thought nothing could surprise me anymore, he played Fool’s Overture! – now I couldn’t really ask for more.

But this great evening wasn’t over yet. Roger had surprised us with a new song, and an amazing show – now it was time for us to give back “a little bit.” It was time to get the Birthday-banner ready. At the encore, when Roger came back on stage, we had it ready – holding it and singing out loud “happy birthday!”

The banner was thrown up on stage, and so Roger held the it so everyone could see it, saying “you make me the happiest man alive!” – and with a big smile he placed it on the grand piano. “It’s my birthday in one and a half hour, this is my birthday party!” he said to the crowd.

With a very big smile, he asked: “So – what do you want to hear? School?” and the audience yelled out loud “yeaah!” – School is, among many other songs, an all time favourite. People were loudly singing along, clapping, whistling – and the applauses seemed they would never end. And it was a perfect end of the concert, when he played “It’s Raining Again”- people were literally dancing, jumping, singing, clapping – and even after he had left stage, the applauses went on and on and on.

And even when the song is over, where have I been – was it just a dream?

And so weekend is over, and I can’t believe all this really happened. It feels like I just woke up from a wonderful dream, but all the photos and messages circulating the Internet tells me: this really happened!

We all met up again the day after, on a sunny Saturday – and we agreed we could thank Roger for the fantastic weather: it was his birthday, and had obviously been a good boy 😉 On this sunny, beautiful Saturday, we went for some sightseeing in Nurnberg – and one thing we had to do before splitting up later that day, was to touch the Nurnberg ring, to have a wish free – and if our wishes come true, we can with peace in our hearts look forward to next year!

Our community is very special, we have laughs, experiences, moments, pictures and stories to share. And finally meeting some of them outside cyberspace, and realising that people really are the way you know from the Internet. No one hides behind masks, but are just as crazy, fun, wonderful, warm-hearted and beautiful in “real” life as in cyberspace.

Thanks everyone to make this happen, thank you so much, Linda for your incredible kindness and help, thank you Aaron, thank you Roger for being who you are and for all that you give – thank you all from the bottom of my heart!

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I am excited these days. On Thursday I’ll board the ship to Denmark – and I look forward to two days at sea, riding the North Atlantic waves back home. And I’m looking forward to give my parents and my brother megatons of hugs!

I have been away from Denmark for several months (since July 2008), and my family and friends are calling me, writing me, messaging “when will you come home?”

I feel loved. And I feel grateful, for having such wonderful people around me.

Next week is also something I’m looking forward to – a trip to Nuremberg, meeting cyber-friends for the first time outside cyberspace.. I can’t wait! And the occasion is a concert with my favourite composer/singer/musician Roger Hodgson.

Some may ask why I just keep attending these shows, and the answer is pretty obvious: I love the music! And his concerts are very special, an experience you shouldn’t miss, so if you have the opportunity, then go for it! 😀

And another wonderful thing: it’s been so long since last trip (except a short visit in London, a trip to Northern Germany and Sweden) to a new place in Europe. Latest big trip was to Prague almost ten years ago (omg!) and that’s a city I will never forget. Prague is amazing, and I’ll have to visit it again someday.

When I was there, I traveled by train, and so I will do also this time – it’s cheap, and the train goes non-stop from Copenhagen, Denmark. Perfect. It takes 10 hours, so I’m happy to travel by night, and hopefully get some sleep while going south.

That’s a life I love: me, a backpack, travel tickets and Roger Hodgson tix in my pocket. The only thing missing is my boyfriend by my side, but he’s busy these days.

(Oops, I didn’t call my boyfriend a “thing” did I?)

First of all, I’m looking forward to a couple of days on the ocean. One of my favourite places on the Planet 😉

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Now that I have been blogging about how much I love living in the Faroe Islands, it’s time for some complaints.

It’s winter. It’s rainy. It’s stormy. And it’s dark.

We only have little daylight, and the sun doesn’t appear, as it’s hiding behind the mountains surrounding my village. The sun rises at 8.53 AM and sets at 3.31PM, and it’s not even the darkest time of the year yet. One month to go, until it will go the “right way” again.

One good thing is that it rarely gets freezing cold here. One should think that the Northern latitude, that makes the winter dark and summers bright, also will have lots of snow and ice to offer. But nope. Fortunately, we’re located in the middle of the warm Gulf Stream, so the ocean keeps us warm.

But the ocean is also a threat at times. Our neighbouring village was smashed by waves, ripping off garage doors, flooding basements ect. And the wind that caused those waves also damaged houses.

I have repaired my basement door three times now. And I’ve tried to tell the sharp winds to leave that door alone! Now I repaired it again, and made improvements, so that even if a nuclear blast blew away our house, that door will still be standing there. Um. I don’t hope someone bomb our islands, but ya know what I mean!

In these dark times, I do have a lot of things I’m looking forward to. Christmas is one of them. A concert in Nurnberg, Germany is another. With a little help from my friends, I got a 5 row seat for the Roger Hodgson concert in Nurnberg March 2009!

Some may wonder: “thaaats a pretty darn long way from the Faroes, to attend a concert!” – it is. But not only Roger Hodgson’s fantastic concerts is dragging me there. Many of my dear friends I’ve got to know thanks to the Internet, is also attending, and my heart is filled with joy, because  I’m going to give them REAL hugs instead of those cyber-hugs! And finally, I’ve heard that it’s such a beautiful place.

I consider going there by train from Denmark (after a nauseating trip by ship from the Faroes) – it’s slow, but also cheaper, and I can take a look at Germany, a country just South of my home country, but haven’t had the opportunity to visit.

Until then, I’ll let winter be winter and look forward to a great experience in March.

Oh – just a few pictures from the recent storm. I still prefer the idyllic summer/autumn pictures though (photos by S. Magnussen)

Winter storm

Winter storm

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I heard this piece of music when I was a little girl, 8-9 years old (about the same age, as when I was introduced to Supertramp), and since then, it has popped up in my head once in awhile…but I never knew the band’s name, or the name of this piece of music – until yesterday, when my mother played it for me again.

It was, of course, Renaissance – and the song on my mind was “A Trip To the Fair”. Whatever happenened to them? They made three albums and called that a day… a pity, they were great!

I remember listening to a trip to the fair, and I closed my eyes and imagined that I was singing it… guess I was a young daydreamer.

Today I just wonder: why was all the great music (especially progressive rock) made years before I was born? This album/song is from 1975, 7 years before I was born. I could only find this rather boring video on youtube, that only shows the album cover – but it is easier for me to post in a blog, than to install a mp3 player ect. I’m just happy to listen to this piece of music again, and I felt like sharing it 😉

Does anyone (especially you who were around at that time) remember this? To me, it’s just childhood memories – and now I’ve finally found out what it was I was listening to!

I took a trip down to look at the fair
When I arrived I found nobody there
It seemed I was all alone
Must be that they’ve all gone home

Chorus:

A trip to the fair but nobody was there
A trip to the fair but nobody was there

Voices of yesterday make not a sound
Even the roundabout stopped going round
I wonder just what it means
Is everything how it seems?

Chorus

A creak as the dodgems came onto the scene
Wheels began turning I started to scream
A carousel swung around
My head spun and hit the ground

Chorus

I close my eyes to disguise the fear from inside
Trembling within my own mind I find no place to hide
Stars of tomorrow shine through the grey mist that has gone
I wish that this trip to the fair had never begun

Suddenly thousands of faces I see
Everyone seemed to be staring at me
Clowns laughed in the penny arcade
What was this game my mind played?

I took a trip down to look at the fair
When I arrived I found nobody there
It seemed I was all alone
Must be that they’ve all gone home

A trip to the fair but nobody was there, but nobody was there
A trip to the fair but nobody was there, but nobody was there

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That happens so often.. that I don’t write much in my blog during the week because I don’t feel I have much to say, but then suddenly a lot of ideas pops up.. but today’s blog is about London and travelling.

Because my Mother and I went to London in October last year, to see Roger Hodgson at the Royal Albert Hall – we bought tickets a year before, without knowing that Roger would come to Denmark later that year. But it doesn’t matter – we had a great trip there, and if we knew at that time that Roger Hodgson performed in Denmark – even two shows! we would have missed a great experience.

And now I’m having a nostalgic moment, I realised, that even though I’m not much into travelling to big cities, London did find its way into my heart. It’s busy, noisy and everything like any other city, but also cozy and nice.

Unfortunately, my mother had big pains in her back, and she had a “frozen arm” whatever it’s called.. big pains everytime she moved her right arm.. allow me one note to that: those pains almost kept her from going to Roger’s show in Randers, and not only did she have pains, she was also having a bad cold. But she went because she was invited backstage, and she said that she just had to go no matter what! And for some strange reason, after the concert and meeting Roger, she had no pains from that day! She could move her arm again! (must have been all the good energy in the room!) – and I am also wondering, because I haven’t had any migraine attacks since then.. yes, a boost of happiness can do a lot.. End of note and back to London:

Because of those pains, city walking was painful for her, and we didn’t see all those things we planned. Not that we planned anything really..but anyways, she starts talking about a market she had heard about.. Covent Garden, and a lady who passed by us while she was talking heard it – we were of course speaking Danish to each other – but the kind lady heard her say “Covent Garden”, smiled and said “oh, are you looking for Covent Garden? That’s that way” and pointed.

So we headed for Covent Garden, and there were some great musicians playing there, and my mom recorded a bit of it. Because of that arm, she couldn’t hold the camera still, but I love the clip. It was moments like these that make me miss London and those cozy and fun moments:

You hear my mother laughing in the clip…and my laughter at the end of it. What made us laugh was the way they were chasing those who didn’t throw them money, chasing, dancing and playing the violin at the same time.. it was just awesome.

London is definetly a city I’d love to visit again, and maybe I’ll bring my mother along now that she is well. But maybe I’m going there already in July, because I’m going with my boyfriend to Ireland – and we consider visiting London on our way over there. July is definetly going to be an eventful month, and I just can’t wait visiting London again, and after that; zipping around the beautiful country Ireland.

Ok that was one nostalgic blog, thinking about past and future at the same time. Tomorrow I’ll go out and take pictures of the spring, because everything is so beautiful right now.

Uh, did I say tomorrow? I mean later today, it’s already 2am.. I better turn off this ‘puter and get some sleep, so good night! (and good afternoon to my friends overseas 😉 )

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