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In the morning, after my usual trip downstairs to breakfast I got a message from Heather;

“The car we need to shop for ingredients is 'on the road' buying 40 sheep heads. It will be more than an hour before he is back.”

Metal priorities.

I showered, got dressed, and took the 10 minute hike over to Heather's hotel. I met her in the Grand Terminus lobby, which is a really cute little sitting room with a fireplace, bar, and free coffee. I took full advantage of the latter as I waited for Heather to come down and meet me.

Our driver was very late coming back from the sheeps' head errand - apparently for Gorgoroth's set - and Heather and I were getting ansty. We needed time to shop, get organized, prep and then cook and this was very much cutting into this schedule. More than a little irritating to say the least.

Margareth, one of our drivers from last year, finally arrived to take us shopping. I took a breath of anxiety when I saw her, remembering her Crazy Taxi-esque driving style from last year . Shit, I hope there are seatbelts, I thought.

The trip to the supply store, while stressful as Heather and I contemplated menu items on a notepad, was a bit less death defying than last year. However, during this trip we were saddled with the task of picking up stuff for the guys running the hamburger tent ( i.e. THE very tent from last year, which we thankfully had absolutely nothing to do with). So this annoying errand took up even more of our precious time, and on top of all of it the store where we were didn't have some very specific yet crucial ingredients that we needed – sesame oil, bok choy, snow peas, tofu or a tofu-like substance to give you an idea.

We needed these ingredients, as they were crucial to our menu, but Margareth was panicking that she also had to pick up The Tent from the rental place and didn't have time to take us to that store. After some planning back and forth, we decided that Heather should stay at the venue and I should go with another driver to obtain the rest of what we needed. I was paired up with Geir, a rather silent but very nice bald man. I tried to describe to him what I needed and asked where to pick them up, but I could tell he wasn't sure what I was talking about. He drove me to three stores, all three which I could only describe as similar to our city ghetto-marts. Very little selection, and absolutely none of it being what we needed. What made it worse was, while the native Norwegian man driving me was very nice, he didn't go inside with me to help me translate the ingredients, so it was pretty much a fish out of water type of situation.

I almost cried. I knew Heather would shit a brick of I didn't get these items, but between being in an unfamiliar area, not speaking the native language and having a non-foodie as my driver I was dead in the water.

It had already been an hour which was far more time than I had wanted to spend on this stupid task, so I hung my head in defeat and grabbed what I could – some napa cabbage that l thought looked like bok choy and something else I can't remember because I suspect I blocked it out, because let's just say Heather was less than thrilled with me when I got back. But what the hell could I do? This wasn't Cleveland for Christ sake where I could have had that errand done in 10 minutes without leaving out a thing. I was just as devastated as she was.

Anyway, that bullshit aside the four of us (Heather, Melissa – our American expat friend who lives in Copenhagen, and Dima, our Russian friend who lives in Canada) got shit done and out on the buffet table with minimum bugging from hungry crew and band members. And later, hard feelings aside we toasted with some of Heather and Melissa's duty-free whiskey from their flasks. We did have to hide that shit from the venue people pretty well though, as alcohol laws in Norway are expensive and dumb (the venue can only serve beer and wine, and it's like $15 for a beer).

We cleaned up and headed out to check out Gorgoroth's set, which was the source of a huge kerfuffle. Do you remember those 40 sheep's heads from before? Well, Gorgoroth had them all lined up onstage during their set, and at one point started chucking them one by one into the audience. Well, one fan caught one, and after the show on their way home just left it on the sidewalk. The next day, some of the residents walked past it and were so disturbed by it that they called the police, which resulted in this huge investigation and an article in the local newspaper.

It's in Norwegian, but the photos say it all.

Keep it metal, Norway. ;-)

More later. I'm at Common Grounds and it's cold in here.


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August 2016

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