Good morning Europe from a windy but bright Baku. As usual having a slow and fuzzy start to the day and trying to wake up by throwing copious amounts of coffee down my neck and nibbling on some dry Azeri bread, the cheese has all been eaten up by that Monty and I can't get into the ruddy jar of gherkins we bought! It's all glamour here dear readers...
We did a video piece last night from the lobby of the euro club of our thoughts on the first semi run through though it was well after midnight and many beers so perhaps this site's technical director has deemed it untransmittable...If he can salvage anything more than drunk ramblings, I think it will be posted at some point today.
So hot footed it straight from the rehearsal yesterday in order to get to the German party in the Otto Efes bar near Fountain Square in the centre. There were no shuttle buses running as they were setting up the entrance turnstiles and crowd control barriers for the late evening rehearsal. Well you would have thought that some of the press people there were being forced to run a marathon, there was a particularly awful display of rudeness by one group from god knows where, screaming that this was the worst eurovision ever and how disgraced they were. Come on people, it was a 15 minute walk, deal with it. It really made my blood boil. The people here in the main are falling over themselves to help and ensure we are having a nice experience here. There are always little things that go wrong no matter who is the host nation. Rant over!
We arrived too early for the Germans and were told to come back for 9 prompt as only a German organiser could. When we arrived we welcomed warmly and told that a complimentary cold beer was waiting for us at the bar, that was a cue for quaffing about 17 of them whilst enjoying the delights that Roman Lob had to offer. He really is more stunning in real life and did the obligatory photos with us before doing a set with his band. Gaytana from Ukraine was milling around too and I was milling with her dancers, read throwing myself unashamedly at them and fawning about how slick their routine is....
Nina Zilli arrived next in ANOTHER Vivienne Westwood ensemble, she really is stunning in the flesh and so charismatic. We got chatting to her backing singers who seemed totally overawed by the whole eurovision experience. I am sure they had no eurovision expectation before leaving Italy and now here they are on the verge of winning the contest. She sang her song and brought the house down. I love her!
We hung around waiting for the free bar to run dry but it didn't so had to steady ourselves with a midnight McDonalds run. A couple of off duty volunteers got talking to us in the queue and latched themselves onto us. One was only 19 and pretty as you like so I entertained them for longer than I possibly should and they even escorted us to the taxi rank. After being asked on numerous occasions how sexy I think the Azeri girls and which football team I support, my blank expressions finally forced the proverbial penny to drop. "Are you one of those homosexuals?" he asked. "Would it make a differnce if I said yes?" I said. "Not really." "Then yes, I am" I replied to an awkward pause but bless them, they still carried on escorting us and wanted us to go to their uni campus for lunch with them later in the week. All very surreal.
We arrived at the euroclub for a nightcap which lasted us through to about 4.30 when we finally decided it might be a good idea to leave. Danced with bloggers from other parishes and had a jolly old time.