Saturday, November 29, 2008


Another one of those days.

Our guitar tech quit -- for strictly personal reasons -- and we were all scrambling to find a replacement. As I made my 5th call, I thought, "Do I really want to subject a friend to this madness?" Eh, no. In the end, someone else was found, so I haven't burned any friends...

Four more shows counting tonight. Four more. When this night is over, I'm headed straight to a hotel, a hot shower and bed... for like, what, 6 hours sleep? Um, better than nothing I suppose.

That's it, really. Hopefully I'll be online for a bit and can upload some photos. Today is the 29th and I'll be home, sleeping in my own bed in 6 days!!!

Friday, November 28, 2008

in manchester

Our guitar tech quit today... or is in the process of leaving anyhow. Le sigh.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

what i'm thankful for this year...

Well, I've met some really fabulous people this year... and one not-so fabulous. I'm thankful for my health (although I'm feeling a bit old today -- oh, me knees!) I'm thankful that this god awful tour is almost over. I'm thankful that I have a bit of backbone and when asked if I'd stay an extra day to help with the wardrobe returns, I'm saying "no."

There's loads more... mostly I'm thankful that I've been financially responsible enough to not have to work for this artist again. It's afforded me a freedom to make mistakes once, and not repeat them. Hoorah.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

god help me...

She's back and in rare form. I was asked why I always have "that look on your face..." which look, I asked..."the look of having the weight of the world on your shoulders." Um, yeah. I can't remember which silly request she had put in for me to make me have "that look" on my face, but I'm sure it was something above and beyond (my job description).

She was actually fine when I met her at the train station. She regaled me with stories from last night's fete... and was jovial. Then we go to the gig and she was all business. Fabulous. I got a mild chiding over the trousers -- the zip doesn't have "an end" and the hook and eye are missing. Whatever. I am over IT.

8 more days until I'm finished. I'm only going to sort out the garments for Jo... and that's me finished. SHE asked me what was going to happen with all the loaners after the tour and I was like, "not my problem, babes!" Well, not really. That was what I wanted to say. I explained that we were going to sort them and Jo would return them because I'm flying home on the 5th and the stuff might not be back at the storage space early enough on the 4th (it will but I don't want her to know that).

This is a nightmare of a tour. I doubt she'll be doing a US tour anytime soon -- she'd have to really strip things down because I can't imagine she could sell a tour... so no wardrobe! Yeehaw!

OK. I hear talking which might mean sound check is finished. That means I have to attend to HER. Feck.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

like winning the lottery

Almost. I'm at the British Library -- not doing research. Nope. Doing free internet! Hoorah! They're open until 8pm, which is a respectable hour to head to King's Cross, get a coffee and a sweet and wait for the bus to turn up. Jo, our TM is riding with us tonight, so I don't expect I need to round everyone up... which is excellent considering I've been out walking around in the cold all day (since noon, really).

I didn't make it to a movie because I had to get the trousers. The dreaded trousers. The Viktor & Rolfs with the busted zipper... I did something silly and dropped them at a local (to my shitty hotel) dry cleaners. The promised me they'd come back in pristine condition, but I did have my doubts. Well, imagine my surprise when I went in an hour and a half early (I wanted to make sure a quick trip down to Covent Garden and the bead shop wasn't needed) and the trousers were clean, pressed... new zipper installed (albeit still a plastic one). I think these will last the remaining 7 shows. If not? I really don't care. I do, but I'm trying really hard not to.

I sat at Euston for a while this morning just watching the people go by... there were a couple of Korean girls sitting next to me just blahblahing, waiting for their train, and they had the cutest capes on. I'm going to make an effort to sew more when I get home... just because.

Right. I need to find a power point so I can upload some photos. The fun, you see, it never ends.

how wonderful is wifi?

I'm at the Apple Store on Regent Street using the wifi so I can check email... I feel like an asshole, but whatever. I've given Steve Jobs enough of my money, right?

I have hours to blow before I meet the bus at King's Cross... a movie might be in order. I'm going to make my way to Leicester Square now to see what's on... what might fit my schedule. I have to collect dry cleaning at Euston by 6pm so that puts a bit of a wrench in my loaf. I don't have anywhere to hang out otherwise... maybe I'll just go to the British Museum. I should go see the Greek Antiquities before it's decided that they have to give them back.

7 more shows to go!!!

I'll be home the first week of December and I can't wait. I've been craving Mexican food for weeks now... soon enough. Strangely I haven't yet had a curry. I don't think it's going to happen on this trip. Oh well... all the better for my bowels.

Right. The security guard is circling me like a shark... I feel I should make myself scarce now.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Today they're filming the show for webcast... and a possible DVD, but they're not saying that so as not to have to pay everyone more money for the film. Hah.

Last night there was the first real wardrobe "malfunction." I don't know why designers put really cheap plastic zippers into garments... oh wait, yes I do -- it's because designer garments which aren't specifically made for the stage, are meant to be worn on occasion -- just once in a while. Not every damn day for an hour on stage. Being danced in. So, on the 12th show, the zipper on the Viktor&Rolf pants split. I'd already put the change trousers in the quick change -- so they weren't right on stage... which, you know, I wouldn't have done if my crystal ball hadn't been on the fritz. I could've foreseen the zipper problem and maybe, I don't know, fixed it before it had broken, again mitigating the need to have spare trousers on stage???

I got a telling-to after the show -- that SHE "wasn't at all happy about the Viktor&Rolf pants." No shit? As if I WAS happy? Did I look happy as I frantically ran down to the quick change to grab the other trousers -- and was told to forget about it? Maybe I was smirking... I don't know. THEN I "missed a cue" because I can't read her mind. This is the most frustrating tour I've ever been on. I've never seen so many people run around trying to keep one person happy... I have to ask the BVs to go and hang out with her before they go on stage because they don't always remember to go into her room and have a drink with her... you don't forget to hang out with people you like, do you?

So, 8 more shows. Tonight is being filmed... for "webcast" and I can't do anything about the trousers because we have two wardrobe cases and I don't have a proper sewing kit. It's Sunday in Brussels anyway so I'd be hard-pressed to find a good store with a metal zipper and a sewing machine. We've already called this designer-friend of hers but he's in Amsterdam. Typical. I'm not really sweating it... except that when I told her I might have to sew her into the trousers, she freaked out on me. It's not THAT unusual but that's beside the point.

OK. That's my pre-show bitching. She could surprise me and be charming seeing as her family and boyfriend are here at the show today... which I think is ridiculous considering she's already going to be stressed out enough over the filming. Whatevs. I just need to walk away if she starts screaming at me.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

another one of *those* days

I could cry but I'm too tired. Seriously. You can only be yelled at so much, by so many people before... well, I don't know. I'll sleep on it and form a hypothesis tomorrow.



In Cologne today... it's freezing! I'm not ready for winter, apparently.

Last night wasn't too bad... got yelled at and shoved, but nothing too traumatic. I'm turning into a bit of a duck on this, the last half of the tour. 9 shows to go (counting tonight) which means I'm in my bed in exactly 2 weeks!

Friday, November 21, 2008

the fear

I'm a little worried that tonight is going to be a massacre... first production show with no rehearsal. Should be interesting. I hope I don't get yelled at... too much, or kicked. I might kick back.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

here's what's happening

So I'm being a completely lazy bastard today. It's heavenly... yes, the sun is shining outside and it looks gorgeous, but this is the absolute last day of sloth I have until I get home on December 5th. I changed my return ticket... am following up on a weird charge to my credit card... and now I'm doing nothing. I have to check out of my room at noon tomorrow and don't meet the bus until 10pm, so I figure this is a good day to stay in. Tomorrow I have big plans for the Wembley IKEA and the Neasden Hindu Temple... and possibly a new long coat from the mall at Westfield. That's three big trips, well, sort of, so I'm going to sit here and type up an update now.

My birthday was so nice. I really miss Cec... and Val... and I got to spend a few lovely hours with them over a very casual dinner. I got tipsy off of two... maybe three... large glasses of wine and we laughed and laughed and talked about boys and clothes and work and it was just normal. I didn't have to worry about saying something that might offend someone or being anyone but me. Cec's trip over was way too short and I feel guilty for dragging her down to my lazy level, but she didn't complain. We never did climb to the top of St. Paul's (which I've done too many times already) and we did go to see the Gherkin together -- something I've been wanting to do for a few years. She didn't see the galleries at the Tate Modern, but it's somewhere she'll return to eventually. We had a nice stroll along the Thames taking photos and soaking up the sun (I even worked up a sweat!) and it was just nice.

The tour I've been on is exhausting. I don't know what happened to 2008. It's been a bear of a year -- not just for the stock market. I've had three less-than-fabulous tours (the first one was just awful all around, the next was just bad because of the work but the people were amazing, and this last one? I can't get my head around it yet. Everyone is fabulous bar one and she's who we're all working for). I was in a similar position last year at this time; I was on a tour I didn't like with nice people doing work I didn't care for and I put the intention into the universe that this year should be better. I think I'll keep my intentions to myself and see how '09 unfolds.

I started dreading going back to work the day we got back to London. I knew that my unpaid "days off" wouldn't be "off," just unpaid... and I spent a good two days stressed out about absolutely nothing. I feel horribly for Cec because I know it spilled over into her visit even though I promised a mere 30 minutes of complaining. We're completely different people, but she's good people and she forgives my shortcomings.

When I meet everyone at King's Cross tomorrow night, the 20th November, it's exactly two weeks until the end of this tour; 10 more shows. I've never been this anxious/excited to get home from Europe before -- this, when the Pound is so weak even. I just want to be HOME. Home even if there are few friends there... or they're too busy with family commitments or whatever. When I think of that, it makes me wonder if I'm depressed... maybe a bit -- the holidays tend to bring that forth, but nah, this tour is depressing. I look older when I'm at work than I do on a day off -- it's from furrowing my brow all day, waiting for the scolding I know will be coming eventually. I tell myself that the woman we're working for is miserable -- that's why she makes us all miserable, and that I should pity her, but honestly, she's just a nightmare and not worth my pity. I'm under no false pretense that we have to be friends and I have no desire to be her friend... it's just exhausting trying to mitigate the freak-outs and verbal assaults. I expend so much energy trying to keep up with her demands -- but in succeeding, she reaches a comfort level where she can ask for even more ridiculous stuff. I just can't win and so I count down the days... but today? I'm not counting. I'm not doing anything at all.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

birthdays and blurrydays

Ah, London. Here since Saturday again... which was a day for sleeping. Cecilia arrived on Sunday and we immediately went on a drippy walkabout in the rain. Wagamama eaten, British Museum and National Portrait Gallery visited, we started the shopping and then went West to meet Val for a drink and an eat.

I had a lovely birthday this year -- it certainly surpassed any birthday I've had in the last five years or so. It was incredibly low-key, low-expectation and high reward. Hoorah.
Yesterday was another drizzly day -- we didn't do much other than shop and eat. Cec, unfortunately, isn't a fan of S&M. I'd have to say she's not necessarily a big fan of British foodstuffs... sadly. Maybe they're an acquired taste? To be fair, she didn't have the best sausages and the gravy was a bit overwhelming... eh, I love the stuff. Could live off it (until I have a heart attack anyhow).

Today she's leaving and the sun is shining. I've got laundry on my "to do" list. We had tentatively planned on climbing St. Paul's but I don't know if that's going to happen... I think she's down in the lobby doing a paper; but I'm not sure. I've been up for a couple of hours; suppose I could've taken care of my laundry by now, but you know, I'm OFF work so I'm being incredibly lazy.

Enjoy the photos.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

leaving prague

Am I allowed to change my favorite city? I love Prague... the only problem is that it's so damn expensive. We've had beautiful weather the day and a half that we've been here -- I made myself go on a bit of a walkabout (because I knew I'd regret it if I didn't...) and I really wish I were staying here for the next four days.

Oh well.

Cec is coming to visit me in London and I get a bit of a break from this crazy tour.

Right. Here's some pictures of the touristy bit of Prague... it's such a stunningly beautiful city, it's just not right.

Friday, November 14, 2008

what is going on?

OK. Warsaw and Berlin were great shows... I don't know what today is going to be like. I'm wary and weary and teary and tired. We're all tired which means today could go either way... it could be fabulous (again) or it could be very traumatic and stressful. I'm keeping my eye on the prize (i.e. the ever strengthening dollar against my pound sterling wages. Le sigh... could be worse I suppose... I could be doing this for free but then how would I pay for the therapy after???)

Tonight we're at the Electronic Beats Festival with the Orb and some other bands I might've heard of. We get to meet our support band for the remainder of the tour (10 shows after tonight!!!) I've also got to find out about my return ticket from Cork so I can book my change home. It seems a shame to leave the UK when the dollar is having a rally against the pound, but I'm just sick for home after this tour. I really, really am. I need some creature comforts and some quiet...

Eddie asked me today if I hated him for getting me involved with this mess. I don't HATE him, but I'm a little disappointed I suppose. I always try to prepare myself for the worst, but I didn't have a clue when it came to this tour. Eh, we're past the halfway mark at any rate, so I just need to keep it together for a little longer.

OK, so I'm in Prague and it's a beautiful, sunny day out. I want to go explore a bit and then come back and nap. We're not even on until 12:30am and it's only 2:15pm now... my ride back to the gig is in about 9 hours so a quick shower now... a walkabout... a nap... another shower... then gig, bed, airport, London, hotel, birthday, HOORAY!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

jesus christ

The exchange rate is now £1 = $1.48. Fuck. Great for tourists... typical since I'm getting paid in Pounds Sterling. AND by the time my credit cards bill me for everything I've charged, the rate will probably be close to 2:1 again. Goddamnitall.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

manic/tragic panic

I can't stop the panicking... it's almost at DefCon-4. Seriously. I sent cleaning out all over London and just got it all back. As I'm packing things up, I notice that one of the items I sent for alterations wasn't sewn correctly. Feh. The two puffy dresses sent to the good cleaners didn't get the mending I was promised... but then again, they did turn them around in 24 hours. That alone was above and beyond. THEN at the hotel, of the 12 items I sent out, I only got the 6 shirts back... the bottoms just turned up. My life is being shortened by weeks and days, not just minutes on this tour. It's the 11th. I'll be in my own bed in less than one month.

Tomorrow we fly to Warsaw; it's unfortunate that I won't have time to explore, but so be it. I'll have to go back at some point.

Today was a beautiful London day -- it was sunny, albeit breezy. These are the types of days which make me fall in love with this city. I was in a bit of a swoon all day running around doing my silly errands. I wish I had more time to explore, actually -- since things are always changing. It used to be hard work to find Korean food here, but I saw three Korean restaurants today. I might have to drag Cec out for bibimbap on the day she arrives... or maybe I'll just wait and have my momma's cooking when I get home. Maybe that'll be best...

Monday, November 10, 2008

like flies...

Michael Crichton and Miriam Makeba? Jesus. So sad.


As in wet rat... or wet blanket. Take your pick. I spent the day running three errands. Yes, it took all damn day to stop at three places. Unbelievable. It's down to the rain -- not a nice, drizzly London rain, it was pretty much a downpour and there I was in nothing but a sweater and a thin water "resistant" wind breaker, jeans and converse. Not really appropriate dress for the weather today... a wet suit would've been better. I can't remember having been as wet and cold as I was all day... well, not ever, but not in a long time anyhow. It's funny the things that change when you're away for a year. What was Tower in Piccadilly and then Virgin is now some other store... Zucci or Ziccu or something -- it's still an entertainment shop, but not a brand I've ever heard of. I had a browse and spent no money!

My favorite dry cleaner/alterations shop is no longer where it used to be... or maybe I was lost. Either way, I wandered aimlessly for a good hour before I gave up and went to Liberty to get a couple of items for the Principal which she told me to pick up... yeah, sure... I'm not getting paid here, so yeah, let me run some personal errands. Feh. I'll get over it. Maybe. Anyhow, I asked the shop girl in the Beauty section if she knew of any cleaners/alterations shops nearby and she directed me around the corner... I really hope they don't fuck up the stuff I left, but then again, I don't really care too much. One of the items is for the BVs (which I was told I'm not responsible for) and the other is a bodysuit with a cut that needs to be sewn around. There are five more long-sleeved body-suits in the case, so I'm not too worried... well, that's a lie. I'm worried a bit about getting yelled at. I'll live, though.

I'm operating now as if I don't care whether or not I get fired. I really do care, but it would almost be a blessing to get shipped home. I feel greyer and fatter than I was before I got here -- and it's down to the stress. I'm in it for the money, clearly, and the more money I have at the end, the more time I've bought myself to find work, but maybe a little less stress now will extend my life by about 10 years. Don't know.

Tomorrow it's back out into the weather (which I'm praying will improve) to pick up everything I left behind... I barely have enough pounds, but I'll manage. It's down to invoicing and following-up and following-up some more. We're getting costumes to wear onstage ourselves... I'm actually excited about this -- because it'll be something to hide behind while I'm on stage each evening. What is it? 13 more shows still? I leave on Wednesday for Warsaw and three in a row, then it's back to London for five days off. Cec is coming to celebrate my birthday with me, so there is hope...

Sunday, November 9, 2008


Last night's show in Athens was really good -- meaning I had a good night, didn't get yelled at... was toasted, in fact, and had a glass of champagne. It's been schizophrenic here for sure... my guard is always up (even through toasts).

We flew to London today -- I got my first look at T5. My luggage didn't get lost (unfortunately as one of the suitcases I'm carrying is costumes I have to have cleaned on my "unpaid days off"). Grrr. Actually, I get one day paid off, so I'm doing work for one day and that's it. That day is tomorrow. After tomorrow I'm not answering my phone until I get to Heathrow again on the 12th... unreasonable? Probably. So be it.

I sat next to a massive, hulking Greek man on the plane. He smelled of cigarettes. It didn't stop me from sleeping. In fact, it's only 2:19pm and I'm about to go down for a nap. I'm staying at a rather shit hotel near the airport, but I got such a great deal on the rate I had to take it. My room, actually, isn't bad -- it's just a really ugly building on the outside. I don't care... there's room service, internet and satellite TV. Hoorah.

So that's me. Bed. I'll upload my photos from the plane later -- we did a couple of flyovers above London while we were in a holding pattern; my pics aren't the best, but I couldn't believe the view -- I don't remember flying that low over the city in clear skies... not for a long time, anyhow.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


14 shows left after today. Feck.

bucharest... sophia... thessaloniki... to athens

It's been a long road to Athens. Today is the last of 4-in-a-row and I'm so excited. Last night was a bit of a nightmare (the show was great... there were "words" exchanged after) but we're on the last of the four, so I can do this. We're all exhausted. The roads between the cities are atrocious... the Greeks have been grossly disorganized... the Bulgarians, while incredibly friendly, were too numerous and there was hell press and the Romanians? That was days ago... I barely remember the day.

I spent a day wandering Bucharest however, and it's a city undergoing change. I think that in 5 years' time it'll be really tourist-friendly but at the moment many of the old city streets look like bomb/building sites. It's ugly/beautiful in a way -- the one area where the national art museum and the philharmonic are located are impeccable and I assume an example of what the city will become.

Sofia, unfortunately, was a day down to promo. The city is under fog and still has a very Eastern feel to it... I wish I had a chance to explore -- it's supposed to be a lovely city. Our show and hotel were a bit out of the center, unfortunately, and the juxtaposition between the new and the old (Soviet) buildings is this weird unbalance -- there's extreme luxury with the new, and what appears to be extreme poverty with the old. Our promoter rep explained that Sofia is undergoing a lot of change (i.e. influx of money as they work to get on the Euro) but that there is seemingly no plan to the improvements. It's interesting. Our catering was dynamic here. I just remembered how the catering at lunch in Bucharest was amazing and the dinner was, well, gross.

One funny thing happened on the way to the forum... we were stopped by border patrol in Bulgaria on the way to Greece. The customs official came on the bus and wanted to see everyone -- so I had an abrupt awakening when my bunk curtains were pulled open. Nothing made much sense; I thought we were at the gig and that the crew were coming on to get the luggage... the customs dude was talking to Thomas, our driver, and they woke Roisin -- who got frustrated with the noise, obviously not knowing we were at a border crossing, and yelled, "OI! SHUT UP... GET OUT WE'RE TRYING TO SLEEP HERE!!!" We're so lucky the dude didn't pull us all off the bus for a late-night anal inspection.

Thessaloniki -- what a mess! The promoter was completely disorganized; unfortunately we have the same promoter today. I'll have to post about this show later because I'm still coming down off the disappointment of the evening. I will say that Greece is a "free-smoke" zone. It's absolutely disgusting to walk into a hotel and have to walk through a haze of cigarette smoke. I'm surprised they didn't give us a crate of ciggies upon entry to Greece. It's vomit-inducing.

I could be wrong but I think there are 13 shows left? Don't know if that means 13 shows left for me... or if I'll be coming home early... seriously. News at 10.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I awoke to a new day... a new President-elect and hope. If I get sacked today, it's not so bad... at least I'll be coming home to a new America!

I'd like a new puppy, too.

Monday, November 3, 2008

odds and ends

This met us at the airport today:It's a car, yes... clearly involved in a crash of some sort and it's been saran wrapped together. Is this street legal?

We flew Iberia today from Madrid. The seats were insanely tiny. I knew when I stepped on and saw "business class" that we were in for a long day, but the upside was that they fed us! I'd forgotten what it's like to get free food on a plane... I wasn't sure what to make of it.

OK. I'm just up after a nap and should go to sleep otherwise I'll be screwed tomorrow and every other day.

madrid breakthrough?

Last night's show was good, actually... until the bit where I forgot the hat at the last quick change (the encore). Fuck. I ran it out on stage and was yelled at to "GET OFF!" So I did. I spent the night crouching on stage, trying to be invisible... it really sucked. The crowd were amazing -- they sang along to almost every song and there was this really skinny kid in the front wearing a white t and a scarf who just bopped along to every song... no matter. His nose was the biggest thing on him and I imagined one mis-step would land him face-first into the barricade, yet he stayed upright the entire show.

After, I got a thank you and a hug... which really threw me off guard. I really thought I was going to be flying back to London today instead of Bucharest. I'm here, though... in a JW Marriott hotel -- it's massive (there's a shopping mall on the ground floor). I have no plans to leave this evening, even though I should. I should go and take some pictures because it's just beautiful here... the sun has already set and I'm determined to get some stuffed cabbage (or a burger) from room service. Lame, yes. There's a curry around the corner (which means a 10 minute walk) and I might go there for lunch... can't help myself. Curry. In Romania. I might be dourly disappointed.

My room looks over Ceausescu's "palace." It's pretty disgusting when you think about it. The man was a pig. I'm not sure what it's used for now, but I hear there are tours during the day so I might head over there in the morning and find out what a complete bastard the man was. I can't even describe the magnitude of this place... I can't believe he built it off the backs of the Romanians during his Presidency. It's sad, really.

On that note... I know what the exchange rate is now... so I'm going to order some food... bath... sleep. Awesome.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

porto to madrid

casa de musica, porto, portugal

Porto was a fantastic show... really. I didn't get kicked or yelled at (much) and overall I felt really good about the whole thing. We went on at 1:15am and I didn't get back to my room until 5:30am -- at which point I just went straight to bed. I was shit-tired by then.

I slept all day yesterday and wasted a perfectly nice afternoon for a stroll and some photos. Too bad. I will go back to Porto some day. I will see the sea and the view from the other side of the river. I will. All the buildings were tiled and the city just had such a different vibe from day to night. I think I liked it there?

We left the hotel at 10pm last night to arrive in Madrid this morning... I think there must've been some grumbling about me on the bus because I had two people suggest I practice the quick changes. Hmmm. They don't actually take too long -- yesterday our change was up a flight of stairs because there was only one place for us to go -- up to the emergency exit. There was no other place for the band to stand while we changed... soooo I don't know. I feel like I'm constantly apologizing for things which are beyond my control. We're also supposed to have a rack of clothing on stage during the show -- that was impossible at last night's gig. Tonight we have the rack on stage and I'll have to squat under the monitor desk in view of the entire audience. Le sigh. I didn't sign up for this when I accepted the position... it never occurred to me to ask if I'd be on stage during the entire performance. I asked about quick changes and was told that yes, there would be a couple but there are two changes off stage and about 6 on stage. Seriously. I've never worked this hard. I feel like I need a stage towel and water for myself. It's brutal.


So it's sound check at the moment and I'm shitting myself about the show tonight. I don't want to get sacked, but it might happen. I don't know. This wardrobe job really requires two people. I'm also looking after the band while the TM is at the venue looking after the production stuff, and that job alone takes two people. I'm just exhausted. It's 5 weeks yet to the finish line... hopefully I'll make it with all appendages in tact.