The girl from Maringa

Thirteen years ago, we were on tour in Brazil.  Departing Rio early in the morning, two flights and a longish drive later we arrived at the Aqualung in Maringa.  As we were unpacking our equipment, a significant problem with the way the p.a. had been wired was detected.  The local crew suggested that we soundcheck, and then they’d deal with it.  We counterproposed that the wiring get fixed first, and then we’d soundcheck.   One thing led to another and soundcheck ended at midnight.  The opening band, set up on another stage, went on immediately; our set began, let’s say, around 1 a.m.  It was fantastic.  People had traveled from all over the country to attend the show, and were going nuts.  One woman had some important message that needed to be delivered personally to us on stage while we were playing, which didn’t strike Pete Phillips, wearing the hats of both guitar tech and last line of resistance before reaching the stage, as a particularly good idea.  He told her no, to which she replied, “You’re old.”  Somehow even that didn’t sway him.  It couldn’t have been any earlier than 3 a.m. on a hot summer night when we finished.  I lay down in the dressing room, and despite the roar of the postshow disco, fell sound asleep.  When awakened, I was shivering uncontrollably, sick as a dog.  I didn’t eat solid food for a week.