I’m back and can proudly proclaim that I am a Dad who survived a One Direction concert. I’ve been there, done that and Princess got the t-shirt. They didn’t have my size, which is theresnofriggenwayimwearingthatshit.
“How was it?” everyone’s asking. It was loud. Very loud. Extremely loud. Loud enough to wake the dead and make them wish they hadn’t. Loud enough to make me wish I was dead. Or in a temporary coma. Or moderately deaf. Loud enough to make me want to rip out the voice boxes of the two girls that sat next to me. I didn’t realise woman could scream that loud. OK, actually I do, but that is entirely different blog. The supersonic boom that echoed through the stadium left a ringing that is still evident two days later.
The stadium I’m referring to was the same one that hosted the final of FIFA 2010. And these four boys sold the shit out of it. Every single seat, with a huge crowd spilling (and filling) the centre. Like a Twinkie. Imagine 69,000 (let’s make that 59,000 if you leave out the dads) fans screaming at the top of their lungs EVERY time someone ask them to do so. I wish my kids were this obedient when I asked them to clean the toilet. Or rub my feet. When the band finally arrived on stage, after what felt like an eternity, the kids sang and danced along, never crossing into doesntmakeanysensecrazyneedaslapkindoffan territory.
I think someone should find a way of utilizing the energy released at a One Direction concert. Maybe the guys behind Monsters Inc. was on to something when they tried to harvest the screams of kids. If they bothered converting the screams on Saturday evening it would have been able to power Las Vegas for at least 11,72 years. (I made some rough calculations.) We all know the real reason for not releasing this tech. And it’s not the oil companies. It’s the threat of building weapons with these screams, the sheer amount of energy would obliterate ISIS in a single second. Talk about that being The Best Song Ever…
If you’re still trying to visualise what 69,000 people look like, imagine that same amount of people stuck in cars, wanting to get home. At the same time! There is only one way of describing this scenario effectively and believe me, I was scouring the Internet and racking my brain for something a little more kid-friendly. In the end I just gave up, it simply was what it was: A Fuck-up. A Royal Fuck-up.
And things went downhill from there.
Traffic in the parking area didn’t move for a very long time and eventually my partner-in-crime (who should not be confused with my partner-for-life) persuaded me to use my SUV for its intended purpose. We bailed across a ditch, over an embankment onto oncoming traffic. How rebel are we? We arrived at the lodge at a time when most parents with children between the stages of nappies and dating, should be sound asleep.
The next day we had a great breakfast and then “popped” into a market. Our intention had one fundamental flaw, this market was designed by woman for woman. No man-shit whatsoever. My co-conspirator made a quick observation about our inevitable reality, solely based on the location of beer. They were selling it at the first stall, sending signals to all men that they need to grab a brewsky and remain calm for what is going to be a long walk. The Wives did what they do well, which is browse for hours with barely nothing to show for it.
Afterwards we had coffee with my sis and her hubby and their two adorable kids. It was a slight detour, but we love them and haven’t seen them for awhile and they are SO amazing. (They follow this blog.) Besides we all know how resentment can fester amongst close family. It can last for generations. After the caffeine, we hugged, made idle promises and head home. We don’t stay in Johannesburg as we don’t really care for hijacking and armed robbery.
We got onto the main artery feeding vehicles out of town towards the east of the country. We were happily cruising along until we were not happily cruising anymore. We were stuck on a freeway, as they closed the damn thing. “They” being the most spitefull people on the planet. No cars were allowed to continue, not even the ones with irate, One-Direction-surviving Dads driving. This wasn’t the real problem, the bigger problem was that they had to direct five lines of traffic onto an exit consisting of only two. Which is also the amount of hours it took us to finally be on the move again.
City life sucks.
I can continue and complain about the delays caused by poor service at the petrol station, but to call it any kind of service whatsoever would be an insult to the word. I doubt whether I would get any sympathy for complaining about the lack of speed someone has when they’re attempting to fill
my tank the tank of my car, whilst I’m sitting on my sorry ass. That might come off as ludicrous. I will complain about the four stops we had to endure as a result of road repair in rural South Africa. I could literally see my life passing me by.
And this is how you turn a pleasant 3 hour trip into a 5-and-half hours of hell.
Whoever decided to test the extend of my family’s tolerance and patience levels, know today that we failed miserably. In the final minutes of our trip we lost our ability to communicate properly. We just opted for silence, as we realised barking is not considered a preferred method of human interaction. We made it and kissed the floor on arrival. At least the dog was happy to see us. The four of us were looking forward to get into bed and pull the covers over one of the worst road trips in living memory.
Fortunately I have photo’s and great memories of an evening with One Direction, the family and some great friends. I saw Princess having the time of her life without being ridiculous, not bothered with traffic or delays or bad service. Even Dude had a smile on his face. They enjoyed every second and eventually it will be the only thing I remember, which is why this weekend was PRICELESS.