The Turkish Lady

February 5, 2012 |  by  |  No Particular Song, U2360 Tour  |  2 Comments

At the top of the Rhodes acropolis with a photo of my nana, on a trip I wouldn't have taken had Bono not broken his back in 2010.

It’s Super Bowl Sunday — a day of little present interest but much past significance to me. Of course, in terms of U2 (as most things in my life are), it was 10 years ago today that the band performed at Super Bowl XXXVI. It was the first Super Bowl after 9/11, and U2’s halftime show uplifted a nation still very much in pain and uncertainty. It was a poignant tribute to the lives lost, as well as a sounding bell that it was time to move from mourning to healing.

But, six years ago, on Feb 5, 2006, I watched an even more unforgettable Super Bowl. I can’t tell you which teams played or who performed at halftime, but it was during the game that I learned my grandmother had passed away earlier that day. Nana was a remarkable woman who lived 93 years’ worth of stories that fascinated her grandchildren. She was a Turkish immigrant who came to America at the age of 19, eventually landing in Jacksonville via Ellis Island. I think she headed south as soon as she got here in search of warmer climes — she was born on the island of Kos and grew up on Rhodes, both off the coast of Greece. New York in December probably wasn’t selling her on the States. When Bono (yes, it always comes back to Bono) broke his back in 2010 and U2 postponed their summer U.S. dates for the 360 tour, I took the opportunity to instead travel to Greece and Turkey. My trip included a stop on Rhodes, and while I had no luck in tracking down relatives on the tiny little island, it was exciting simply to walk the same terrain I know she walked. Read More


October 1, 2011 |  by  |  Show Recap, U2360 Tour  |  No Comments

And the trees are stripped bare
Of all they wear
What do I care?

And kingdoms rise
And kingdoms fall
But you go on
… and on.

Fans can’t resist pushing play on the second song on the second side of U2’s second album as Oct. 1 hits and seems to officially usher in a new season. I dutifully play 1981’s October, and its eponymous track, letting the sound of The Unforgettable Fire, an album that encompasses summer for me, fade out. If time must march on, the beauty of an oncoming fall eases the process. Read More

A ‘Bad’ end to a good summer

September 5, 2011 |  by  |  Show Recap, U2360 Tour  |  6 Comments

A great summer. The perfect summer.

My U2 360 journey ended six weeks ago. And in the curious way that time works, it feels like it’s been a year, and it feels like it was just yesterday. My life has done a 180 since then. I’ve changed careers and changed homes and changed cities. It’s an overwhelming amount of transition, but U2 remains my constant as I find my way in this new place, and my 360 tour memories bring much comfort in this temporarily unfamiliar world.

I remember looking at the calendar in January, and the summer months seemed impossibly far off. Now they seem impossibly long gone. Read More

Out. Of. Control.

July 7, 2011 |  by  |  Show Recap, U2360 Tour  |  3 Comments

I got a few bottlerockets and firecrackers in Tim C.’s Alsip neighborhood on the south side of Chicago at a barbecue on the 4th of July. But on the 5th of July, I got fireworks.

It finally happened.

Out Of Control. Live. U2 played my favorite song. The one I’ve been wanting to hear on this tour for two years now. The one I’ve been carrying the same sign for to the last seven shows I’ve been to. The one I was beginning to think I’d never hear live as U2 started to settle into this leg’s setlist.

Tim C., a lifetime Southsider and a man fiercely infatuated with and devoted to his city, has been talking up the event that is *U2 in Chicago* since I met him. So, when the 2010 tour dates were announced, I did the logical thing for a girl from north Florida to do and bought a ticket to the Chicago show. I wasn’t totally convinced I’d go, but I wanted to have a ticket in hand in case things worked out. And after a long year and a half, they did. Read More

I’m not the only one staring at the sun

June 25, 2011 |  by  |  Show Recap, U2360 Tour  |  No Comments

Bono shines like stars in the summer night in Baltimore.

I’ve been a Florida girl for 93 percent of my life. But I’ve never been as hot as I was in Baltimore. The June 22 show was one day after the summer solstice, and while Bono didn’t sing the “shine like stars in the summer night” verse of With or Without You like I’d specifically requested, it was still another perfect show. Read More

She wore seven.

June 22, 2011 |  by  |  U2360 Tour, Uncategorized  |  1 Comment

A replica of Edge's '7' shirt from Elevation

Tonight’s Baltimore concert will be my seventh U2 show, so the shirt of choice is a replica of the “7” shirt The Edge wore during the Elevation tour on the “U2 Go Home: Live at Slane Castle” DVD. Hoping it will be a lucky 7 type of night … maybe I’ll get to hear “Out of Control,” maybe Bono will acknowledge my sign. Maybe he’ll sing the “shine like stars” verse of With or Without You. Or maybe none of those things will happen, and it will still be one of the best nights of my life.

It’s already been a beautiful day in Baltimore. The forecasted rain has held off, though I’ve been sweltering in the GA line since our 6 a.m. roll call. But, I’m not the only one staring at the sun. I’ve reunited with some of my favorite fellow U2 fans, who I met at the 2009 360 show in Charlottesville, and already made some great new friends with people in this line. And it’s been a fun day of radio, TV and newspaper interviews, as all the media outlets want to talk with the crazy people at the front of the line. A local radio station, 98 Rock, has been blaring U2 music all day for the GA line, and the excitement’s building as showtime nears. Desire was playing at one point and I got those “I’m going to be hearing and seeing this band live tonight!” butterflies.

So, followers (Mom): I look forward to reporting on the other side of the show. What time is it in the world? It’s showtime! (In seven hours …)

GA line on the horizon.

June 21, 2011 |  by  |  U2360 Tour  |  No Comments


Got into Baltimore late last night and found the line started up around 9 a.m. today. I’m No. 5 … lowest number I’ve ever been. Thinking I may go front rail for this one!

I went wandering: Beth and Tim’s excellent adventure

June 18, 2011 |  by  |  U2360 Tour  |  No Comments

After a month-long hiatus since the Denver kickoff of Summer U2011, I pick back up with my U2 adventure next week. Monday, I’ll drive to Jacksonville and hop a flight to Baltimore for the concert on Wednesday, drive to Cleveland Thursday with Tim C. to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and finally get to see U23D, then take a quick sidetrip to Chicago (home of Tim C.) before the East Lansing show on Sunday, then an overnight drive back to Chicago to fly home to Tallahassee Monday afternoon. I look forward to being completely exhausted at the end of it all.

Each of my U2 trips will be perfect no matter the specifics, but here’s a quick Top 5 list of what I’m most excited about and/or wishing for this time out: Read More

Flash bulbs, purple irises:
U2 360° Denver photos

May 30, 2011 |  by  |  Flickr Gallery, U2360 Tour  |  No Comments

From the GA list to the emptying stadium, here’s what U2 360 looked like in Denver.

And now I can breathe.

May 27, 2011 |  by  |  Show Recap, U2360 Tour  |  4 Comments

Recap: Denver, 5/21/2011. (Contains setlist spoilers.)

The U2 360 show in Denver took my breath away in so many ways. For starters, mile-high Denver is 5,280 feet above sea level. Tallahassee is 200 feet, on the high end. Between doing laps around the stadium looking for the best vantage point to peek in on U2’s sound check, charging the field at full throttle after speed-walking past security to get the best placement on the rail, and climbing up and down and up again on the many stairs at Red Rocks, I was gasping for air. I’m not in the best shape of my life, but I will safely blame it on the altitude this time.

But, the lack of oxygen only added to the euphoria of the trip. Read More