OMG….I had no clue how intoxicated I was last night! I woke up feeling bloody awful. Hung to high hell! Slipknot I swear plays with the devil himself and I must’ve had nightmares. I’m thrilled I couldn’t remember them. What a freakin’ day yesterday was. Hard to top that.
So finally, I drag my ass out of bed. I really, really wanted to be there to catch UFO this morning at 11am, but sadly, it was not too be. The shower perked me up a little and then I loaded my day bag, grabbed my gear and went out for Day Number Two. Grabbed a couple of liters of water and that seemed to help some as the busload of metalheads rumbled off to Donington. I suspect there were others who might be in worse shape than me.
After you get off the bus, you trudge a mile, to the entrance. Not easy, after a night like last night, but, I made it. Of course. And what do you know, the second I stepped into the arena, it was like the clouds parted, and the sun came out because I felt great. Instantly! I think I just needed to hear a good lick on the ole guitar coupled with some heavy metal thunder bass drums and I knew all would be well.
The rain poured off and on today, but not too badly. It would downpour for 10-15 minutes and then the sun would come out for a couple hours. It was like that all day. Saw some really great bands today I was looking forward to seeing. Before I come, I do my homework and have had how I’ll spend each day and at which stages totally mapped out. Again, this place is an easy 4 3 square miles. It is unbelievably huge. 5 stages! The afternoon chugged along nicely as I saw Heaven’s Basement (smashing), Hardcore Superstar (rockin’ Swedes), Dark Star Riders (which is Thin Lizzy without Phil obviously. They were brilliant), Alice In Chains (my local boys), Motorhead (Holy hell that was awesome), Queens of the Stone Age (blown away. They were fabulous) and the one and only, Iron Maiden. Maiden was kinda of the big draw for me this year and they did not disappoint. I sang along to every song for over two hours with the other 90,000 people around me. Today was the most crowded I have ever seen it. I feel sorry for the bands that drew the same set times as Maiden. Everybody came to see Maiden. I can’t imagine being anywhere else.
The show opened with a WWII British Spitfire buzzing the stage which ripped the crowd into a frenzy. Truly epic and one of a kind. I have never seen anything like that.
However, the hike back to the bus after the show was beyond painful. My legs hurt, my feet, my shoulders, ugh….I was pretty hardcore today for starting out so shitty. I got right in the mix for Alice and Motorhead, but couldn’t do it again for Queens. I had to save what little gas I had in my tank for Maiden. Got right up to about 80 feet I’d guess for the first hour and then I couldn’t take it anymore. The tank was empty. Fought my way out of that mess and relaxed in the back with the rest of the old farts for the remainder of the set. I was thinking, as I walked back to the bus, why do I hurt so bad, and then it dawned on me. There are not a lot of guys, my age, who get up in there. It’s either kids, or crazy fuckers. And I’m neither. At least while I’m not drinking.
Oh that’s funny. To get a drink, you buy chips. Then when you want a drink you just walk through a que and trade one chip for one cider or lager. Easy. Quick. Brilliant. Why don’t we do that? Anyways, when I got to Download I bought 20 chips. When I was ready for my first beer today, I reached in my pocket and had 6 chips left from Friday. No wonder I was so fucked up!! Needless to say, I finished my 6 chips today, but didn’t buy any extras.
Tomorrow’s going to be spent in a more reasonable fan zone. In the rear, with the beer.
See ya tomorrow! \m/