Tour Blog #10: Ottawa, Canada

I went into the trek to Ottawa with the notion that it was going to be the coldest date of the tour, which I think helped prepare me for the bitter wind and my bitter attitude about it.

After playing with Liz’s dog for a bit, we headed to a mountain Cory had been wanting to climb up. The whole thing consisted of stairs, but it was only about 16 degrees, and my asthma was having none of it. It was a miserable walk, but the view was almost worth it.

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We’d built in some time to explore Montreal, but after getting some food, we decided to just start driving to Ottawa. Friday was the only day of the tour we had a hotel, so we were all eager to see what the Marriott had to offer. Upon arrival, the guys ran off to the gym/sauna/teen room (?), and I stayed in the room to take a quick nap, do some work, and get ready to knock out some interviews.

The guys came back and we did some catching up on interviews, but I’m still worried about how I’m going to get them all done. We’re still three or four days behind schedule, and I’m not sure how much time we’re going to have to get them done. It seems as though we may have an earlier set in Rochester, so hopefully we can finish them then.

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We had an exceptionally late show in Ottawa, which ran even later than scheduled. I don’t think the guys even went on until midnight. This is actually extremely disadvantageous from a merch standpoint—when shows run that late, people are eager to get home rather than spend time interacting with the band. We did reasonably well (no one will starve), largely due to some long-time fans who made it out.

I cannot stress this enough—when you buy merch from smaller or local bands, that money makes sure they eat, pay for gas, and get through toll booths. It doesn’t go into a savings account or go to buy beer, it literally makes sure they survive out on the road. 

The room certainly wasn’t as full as we would’ve liked, but the guys got in and got it done. Cory was able to spend more time interacting with individuals in the crowd, rather than the audience as a whole, so that changed up the dynamic a bit. I’m always impressed by how the guys are able to make a room with 20 people feel like it’s packed full.

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I meant to buy my first legal drink in Montreal, but the bar closed well before we loaded in, and I wanted to be on my A-game. Then as we drove to Ottawa, I realized the drinking age there is 19. So I had to wait until midnight when I turned 19 to order, but I did eventually do it. I went with the bartender’s recommendation and ended up with something involving vanilla and butterscotch flavored liquors. The bar sang me happy birthday, and the alcohol kept me a little warmer as we loaded in.

We were in a hotel room with two queen beds, so the four guys split them. We shoved the two armchairs together to form a kind of bed for me that was kindly looked at as a crib. Embarrassingly enough, I was short enough to fit without bending my legs.

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It’s bizarre and kind of heartbreaking that this tour is almost over. I’ll post a long sappy piece about it on the day of Cleveland (which is tomorrow, oh God), but I’ve been trying to get it into my head that I have to go back to normal life in just a few short days so it’ll be less of a shock to my system. This has been the most intense crash-course and bonding session I’ve ever experienced, and it’s definitely the coolest thing I’ve ever done.

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Tomorrow’s blog will include everything from my birthday, during which I’m sure the guys will do something ridiculously nice for me while doing everything they can to embarrass me. Stay tuned, the tour is coming to an end! (I’m not crying, you’re crying)

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