Memories : 18th of September along with U2
Bono with one of the balloons – Paris, September 18th 2010.
Author : Pauline, translated by Florian
“Run” and “wait”: I feel like my day of September 18th 2010 was mostly about that. Wait for a year between the concert tickets presale and the actual date of the show, wait during the journey on the train on the evening of the concert, wait for 10 hours in front of the Stade de France gate – half of the time up and packed, wait for the end of the horrible Interpol gig – which we wouldn’t have expected to be as bad as first part, and finally wait for U2 to enter the stage while the clock is ticking on the Claw’s screen…
And run, of course. Run in the morning to go catch the train, run to catch the subway which is about to leave to the stadium station, wait to reach the stadium gate, and run again once inside the stadium. Run while admiring this massive stage, run while going down the stairs leading to the stands, run even when the Security Officers ask you to walk, run from a checkpoint to another, and ultimately run once the pit is reached in order to get as close as possible to the barrier.
Mission accomplished, you’re at the forefront, right under The Edge‘s nose. That’s just the insolent good fortune of five fans who took the challenge to be at this very spot and who succeeded. We survived the crowd movement when the stadium gates opened, just as the Heaven gates would – our own fans nirvana, we also survived the pushing and shoving when entering the pit. The art of slipping through is what allowed us to queue jump in front of other people in that crowd which was waiting at the pit entrance. Too bad for good manners, too bad for apologies: you sneak around using your elbows, you don’t say you’re sorry, everything is at stake right now! Good manners won’t let our dream slip through our fingers. Too bad for the girl who falls right by my side – probably kicked around too much by the crowd, I barely look at her and don’t even think of stopping by to help. After so much running and so much waiting, and being just a few feet away from the stage, all I want is U2 to appear as soon as possible. Nothing else matters.
I didn’t even notice the 96000-people crowd that was filling the stadium on that night. I was all alone with U2, they were playing just for me. When The Edge started with the chorus of Sunday Bloody Sunday with his eyes closed, he was just playing for me, and Adam surely came my way to meet me while playing Mysterious Ways. That’s the whole point of being at this front row that is so coveted: you can’t see others. Even if you feel the energy radiating from the audience and the communion with the band it leads to, you really feel like being as close as it can get to the four Irish guys – even feeling like being alone with them.
That was not my first U2 show yet it leaves me with an unexplainable memory that was not present on my first concert – my first U2 show for which I had been waiting for four years. This day of September 2010, no doubt, was the day of a great concert. A very good one.
(NB : More videos available on Stroubidoul‘s YouTube channel)
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