I had a couple of welcome days off, including a birthday at my friend Ralf's house in Dorsten. Time to unwind, continue booking my UK tour in February, catch up with a few friends on Facetime and smoke a cigar down by the canal, spending an hour or two watching the great barges slide past on the smooth water.
Yesterday I was back in Enschede in Holland, playing in a beautiful old dance hall used by Folk Club Twente. I finished the set with an acoustic song sung from the floor, the audience humming along melodiously. The acoustics were so good I wish I had sung more songs acoustically now. Enschede is famous for two things, the Grolsch brewery and the explosion in a fireworks factory that took place one Saturday morning in 2001 killing 23 people and damaging or demolishing over 1000 houses. The Grolsch brewery also caught fire and the ammonium cooling tanks came very near to exploding too. Alcohol and fireworks, not a good mix. They say beer tastes better the nearer you get to the brewery, the gig was about 400 meters away and after the show I had a glass from the barrel. It was the best Grolsch I had ever tasted, but I was thirsty.