ALAN FREW

Musician. Author. Speaker.

YOU AGAIN CANADA?

Well it’s that time again it seems. The time where I take my ass and my suitcase and head to the airport.

Back on the road yet again. A dance that I have danced countless times. This time we begin in Medicine Hat, via Calgary.

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Medicine Hat is a city in southeast Alberta, Canada, located along the South Saskatchewan River, within Cypress County. As of 2016 , Medicine Hat has a population of 63,230. 

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Founded in 1883, the name "Medicine Hat" is the English translation of Saamis (SA-MUS) – the Blackfoot word for the eagle tail feather headdress worn by medicine men. Several legends are associated with the name of a mythical mer-man river serpent named Soy-yee-daa-bee – the Creator – who appeared to a hunter and instructed him to sacrifice his wife to get mystical powers which were manifest in a special hat. Another legend tells of a battle long ago between the Blackfoot and the Cree in which a retreating Cree "Medicine Man" lost his headdress in the South Saskatchewan River.

Radiocarbon dates indicate the Saamis occupied about AD 1500 and again around AD 1750", well before most European contact.

We have played Medicine Hat numerous times in our 31 years since The Thin Red Line was first released and we have always found the people friendly and the crowds great, so we are looking forward to this one.

Since I am gone for quite a bit of time I left my car at home and used UBER to get me to the airport. My driver, Ahmed, was a cool dude and he got us there in no time flat.

This acoustic trip only has five of us travelling. Four onstage ; Sam, Al, Carmela and yours truly. Plus we have our trusty sound tech and road manager Joe.

 Here we go...yet again. 

Here we go...yet again. 

Flight to Calgary was smooth and uneventful. I spent most of the time perusing a script I am involved in, while also answering emails etc thanks to the fact that most flights now have internet available ( at a cost of course lol)

Weather outside my window looks lovely, bright and sunny and of course that earth pattern of “the prairies” is always interesting without a mountain, hill or mound of dirt in sight.

 “Hello Mr Frew, you are in seat 2D and welcome to E. coli airlines.” 

“Hello Mr Frew, you are in seat 2D and welcome to E. coli airlines.” 

So I am a bit of a germaphobe. Not as bad as some but certainly way more than most. I carry little individual alcohol wipes with me, the kind one would use if administering an injection to someone and disinfecting the skin just prior. I have been mocked ( many times) in the past by my fellow band mates and musicians and some of my friends. Now get this, we are sitting in the Air Canada Lounge when Sam tells us he has just watched a CBC segment on “how dirty are our airlines” aka “germs found on aircrafts” that can go from annoying, to getting us sick to downright killing us. Sam then asked us to name the areas on the planes that we may think are the stinkiest and dirtiest with germs. Do you think you could pinpoint the area the experts say is the “ultimate haven” for mountains of icky germs? We all guessed, the washrooms, the tray table, the seatbelt, the button for your seat, the screen of the tv....but we missed two hotbeds of shit. One is the pouch on the back of the seat in front of you. Apparently staff find things like “used” diapers, condoms...yes used condoms..and the crème de la crème....used tampons!!! Jesus Murphy people, COME ON!!! Finally the other one we missed that apparently the experts say is the major culprit.... can you guess? It is the “headrest.” And I must admit, in all of my sanitizing through the years, I never thought to do that. But today I did😉 And always will.

 Welcome to Canada people....our beautiful prairies. 

Welcome to Canada people....our beautiful prairies. 

So we landed safely and picked up our vehicles for the three hour drive to Medicine Hat. Man when the weather is great and the skies are clear and the sun is out ... the prairies are a sight to behold. We had a lovely drive into town and within 30mins of our arrival we had a band dinner together.

Headed back up to my room to catch the end of the Patriots v Bills with a happy ending as my favourites chalked up another victory.

Since my day was rather simple with no major news for you, I will leave you with five random thoughts that have no rhyme of reason for entering my head, other than the fact that they did.

1.Batman’s alter-ego, Bruce Wayne, is named after Scottish hero Robert the Bruce and American Revolutionary hero Mad Anthony Wayne.

 “Shuffle Beat, Shuffle Beat, Shuffle Beat, Shuffle.” 

“Shuffle Beat, Shuffle Beat, Shuffle Beat, Shuffle.” 

2. 9/10ths of the battle of life, is just “showing up.”

3. Don’t Forget Me ( when I’m gone ) was inspired by the “shuffle beat” of “Everybody Wants To Rule The World, by Tears For Fears.

4. Art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known.” ~ Oscar Wilde

5. Pittsburgh ...#strongerthan hate

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