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Published: October 29th 2006
After the concert
So, we got back to Bayeux around 3 in the afternoon and we stopped at a megastore called Eleclerk (or something similar). The store was like a cross between a walmart and a costco, and we grabbed tickets to the Ben Harper concert that evening in Caen.
After getting the tickets and some food we took the car back the rental place. I went inside to discuss the window and pay. As it turns out, the guy just kind of shrugged when I showed him the window, and they didn't charge me, and there was no argument. So, about 15 minutes later, we walked next door to the train station and hopped a train to Caen.
When we got to Caen, we set out to find a place to stay. There's no hostel in Caen, so we figured the 5 of us would share a hotel room. The tourist office pointed us to one near the center, which I went to scout out. They wanted 50€ per night for a double occupancy room. We decided to get two rooms in the end, because it was only 20€ a piece anyway. We all got showered, and changed, and then setoff
The gang minus 1
Inside the concert
to find some beer and get a bus to the venue. The guys picked up another one of the 10 packs (250mL bottles) each, and the girls made some mixed drink in a water bottle. While we were sitting around at the bus station, we realized that we weren't going to be allowed to bring the beer inside, so we started drinking faster.
Eventually the bus came, and after about 10 minutes everyone on the bus except us got off at one stop. No one would tell us if it was the venue or not, but 20 seconds later we saw the arena, so we just hopped off at the next stop. We still had half the beer left (at least) and we wanted to wait a bit before going in to get it finished. The girls (huge Ben Harper fans, supposedly) were getting antsy and so we told them we'd try to meet them inside. We spent about 20 minutes finishing the rest of the beer before heading inside.
The arena was pretty small, with seats on one side facing a stage with lots of floor space in front. We went down to the floor to try
to find the girls, and I spotted them pretty quickly near the edge of the crowd. Over the next 45 minutes or so we moved quite a bit closer to the stage until we found a good spot. The girls decided to keep going but we weren't interested in going any further so we told them we'd see them afterwards. Pretty quickly the lights went down, and the concert started.
I'm not much of a Ben Harper fan, but the concert was fantastic. We were standing so close to the stage, and the atmosphere was electric. People had been concerned he might try to do something in French, but that turned out to be unfounded. Plus, it was Ben's birthday and after about half an hour everyone started singing 'Happy Birthday'. The song wasn't quite right, they just kept repeating "happy birthday to you", but it was amazing anyway.
We did have to leave about halfway through to go to the bathroom, so after some debate we decided to all go at once. When we came back, we were able to push (amid grunts of "pardon") our way pretty close to the stage. We weren't quite as close
to the middle as before, but it was still nice.
After the concert we met up with the girls outside and we walked back into town. We were all starving, so we tracked down a kebab place where we had the weirdest kebab's I've ever seen. They weren't actually kebabs at all. I mean, they two hamburger patties in a roll with cheese and some sauce. Basically a double cheeseburger. Oh well, they hit the spot even if they weren't what we were expecting. We all went back to the hotel and crashed.
Mike and Andrew got up early the next morning to go back to Switzerland where they're studying abroad. I slept in until 10 or so, and then walked to the train station. When I got there, the clock on the wall read 9:15, and I was dumbfounded until I realized daylight savings had ended overnight. That also meant I had about 2 hours to kill before my train left, but soon enough I was on my way to Tours.
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