Gibraltar Chronicle Logo

Dinosaur in London looking for Eagles

What? No phone in hotel room? A triple-family room? How did I end up here? I have to assume all the right boxes were ticked when I made the booking but with ‘dinosaurs’ who knows? A mile from Wembley Stadium and the Underground just 200 metres away was the clincher.

Not the price per night and certainly not the wifi at £5 per day nor the scant breakfast at £7 a pop, and certainly not the room’s unbranded TV with a universal remote called ‘Chung Chop’. Don’t ask- I did and a little man from reception came up to grapple with it and soon discovered that he couldn’t make it work either.

“Ah code needed.” He tried, I tried and I tried again after asking Mr Google. We both gave up and he promised “Tomorrow it will be fixed.” It never was and my rant, along with other guests’ went to the internet B...... .com. Thanks for my trusty mobile and small screen entertainment.

IMG_3585

All I still needed were coat hangers, cupboard space or a shelf. No chance. Instead I had an enormous double bed and a single beside it.

Too tired to bother- what I really needed was ‘The Eagles’ in concert. Rant over temporarily as I can see the famous Wembley roof ‘trapeze’ poles from across the main road. My phone said a twelve minute ‘plod’ from here - (that is we what dinosaurs do) and one more concert to tick off my bucket list. Twelve minutes was very optimistic.

The slightly worrying hurdle of having to hook up with a wonderful local family (thanks Eddie Baglieto et al) to pick up my concert ticket on the following day did no wonders for my poor sleep, as also the silent fan perched at over two metres height beside the black useless TV which also refused to work.

The offer of a room change didn’t tempt me as the hook up plan was yet to be agreed. Small brain on overload, I walked spritely (not plodded), to Wembley Stadium early on Sunday morning and scouted landmarks for possible meeting points.

IMG_3577

I took pictures and texted Eddie probably too many times. We finally hooked up at around 3pm and got into the stadium perimeter to seek out merchandize. We got the tour T shirts before the doors opened at 5pm. I was among the first twenty fans to get through the turn style in ‘H’ section.

My palpitations stopped and finally I was at peace with the world until the legendary ‘Eagles’ (dinosaurs themselves) took to the stage at a quarter to eight and elated my mood. Don Henley said “It’s been a week of dinosaurs” referring to giants like Bon Jovi, Billy Joel and Fleetwood Mac who had played London already. “We don’t mind being dinosaurs because dinosaurs leave big footprints.” The stadium erupted as it also did when he said “Tonight we’re going to give you two and a half hours of music – because we can.”

IMG_3576

Those dinosaurs left a huge footprint on my heart. That extraordinary Country Rock catalogue, those melodic voices and exquisite guitar playing, plus the fact that they said that they had opened at Wembley for the Beach Boys only forty five years ago (yes forty five!), made the concert experience even more special for this dinosaur.

I was looking around and when people weren’t standing and cheering, (not too often), they were like me, spellbound by this uniquely beautiful concert sound, unlike anything I have ever heard before - and I’m a fellow dinosaur musician so that’s a few concerts in my bag.

After two hours plus their first encore was ‘Hotel California’ and the stadium exploded, this is what crowned the concert, the most famous song in the world. People were crying, singing, dancing and taking (not permitted) video as did I - then I died and went to heaven, eventually walking back to my little hotel California (dreamin’...) and the prospect of another scant breakfast and flying back the next day, not before an extra hour grounded and wasted being strapped up on the plane while we waited for the aircraft to be serviced for ‘water’.

Back in the day when we roamed the earth life was simpler and we didn’t have so many setbacks.

We also didn’t have ‘The Eagles’.

Did I say that they were awesome?