18th november, a day we`d waited for a long time. My birthday btw and the day we were to join Bruce Dickinson on his Bruce Air Flight 666 from Oslo to Stockholm.
We (Mortis, Tun and me, Kjagen) drove by car from Trondheim to Brumunddal
friday evening. Spent the night there and travelled to Gardermoen Hostel the next morning. Parked the car and got a taxi with some other people from the west in Norway. They were also joining Bruce Air. We arrived 9.15 am, just in time to get up front in the check in queue . The adrenalin was already beginning to flow… 160 people were to fly with the lead singer of Iron Maiden. We had our first beer at the airport 10 am, inspired by some other of the passengers. We had to easy our nerves. We chatted with a guy from Stavanger.
11 am we entered the plane. A lot of media were also present, TV2 from Norway, MTV Germany and som magazines. Don`t know the names.
Suddenly Bruce stood just in front of us. We sat in the second row in the plane which was perfect. He asked some of the media to sit down so all people could pay attention. He welcomed and was really on top smiling and joking. He said that they were doing a headcount and if there were anyone present with two heads, they`d let him know. This since we were vikings…We took off smoothly and the trip itself was just 45 minutes, so no signings and chatting onboard this time. He asked for a quick scream for me Oslo in the air.
Once on the ground in Arlanda ouside Stockholm, he also chatted in the front of the plane. Then Steve from the travel compani I guess, briefed us about the details later this day. Tickets, meeting points and so on. Then we were off in coaches to the city centre, about 1 hours trip. We got our tickets and were free do whatever we fancy until 4 pm. The pubs in the Globen area were the closest attrctions..Most of the passengers were in the pubs and bars. We met many of them.
4 pm we met up to do the backstage tour. People were impressed walking into the hotel and through the doors and straight into the massive Globen arena. And it was just us there. Real special. We photographed and was divided into two groups. The first went up on the stage from the right side. All the equipment were visible. Then Bruce entered and was ready to do the group photographs.
Then it was group 2 turn to do the same. After the photo we could wander around the stage and take pictures. What struck me was how hot it was due to the lights which were fully on.
I grabbed the chance and asked Bruce for a photo with him. No problem at all. He also signed two photos from last years trip to Iceland. And then he signed his book The Adventures Of Lord Iffy Boatrace. Great.
Not many get the chance to be on the Maiden stage, so this was worth the trip alone!!!!
After this experience everybody were really fired up and happy. We went back to the bars and had beers while singing to the Maiden music which were present inside as well as outside. The area was packed with Maiden people. Talked to fans from Italy, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, US, England, Poland, Scotland and off course Norway. Met pople from the Maiden boards, Rasmus, PolishEddie, DTT and lots more. Can`t remember all nemes. It was a really good atmosphare present.
We took off to the entrance for people from the flight and the ones with First To The Barrier wristbands. Talked to people and were ready for the concert. Bought some from the shops inside. Very good merch. The Nordic shirt is great. The warm up band, Trivium, were quite good and did their job well.
The new album works great live. The show, music and sound were impressive. Audience was great as well. The swedes are always a fantastic Maiden audience. They also know how to make a Maiden party before the gigs too.
After the gig we were exhausted. The feets were tired we were soaked. We walked back to the buses in a typical post gig mood ( Happy but tired) The bus took us to the airport and after a while Bruce was ready to take us safely back to Oslo
It was heaven when the beds at the hostel were ready to be used… 😉
Thanks for a fantastic trip. I will do it again for sure if I get the chance.
Thanks to everbody we talked with on the trip. It`s great to meet other fans and get friends because of a common interest!!