Ivan Musoke

Previously in Calgary…

Dear Diary,
I haven’t been here in a bit and there’s a great explanation for that – recounting events on a day to day basis is not sustainable. I’m not sure anyone’s life is that interesting, to be honest. To be fair, even protagonists in religious texts had gaps here and there in their stories.

So, here’s a quick run down – I attended a Snoop Dogg & Nelly concert, covered about 8km on foot, watched a band perform, went to a couple of malls, one of which made it a point to let my body know what it was getting itself into at the food court and realised a little too late that I’d missed an opportunity at throwing out a comeback.

Alright, let’s dive into the detail.

As part of the ongoing Stampede festivities, performances by musicians past, present and future are to be expected. One of these featured Nelly (he of the songs; Dilemma, Country Grammar, Ride with Me and that extended ad for Airforce Ones) and Snoop Dogg (he of, well, weed).

In typical concert fashion, we had to endure curtain raisers in the company of relatively pricey alcohol. There were also a couple of shots that came with a ridiculously high ABV – 20% and the taunt, “Who’s with me”.

It would be ages before Nelly hit the stage, and try as I might, I couldn’t work out how he would sustain a show on the back of three or so songs. Turns out he has a healthy repertoire of hits, some of them actually his own. (Incidentally, Nelly has been hella busy and likes to buy cars – who knew)

I tried to record him doing his thing, but the video quality was wanting…taking on the appearance of an oil painting. In a glass is half full kinda way, you could say I broke new ground with this, I guess.

Next up, Snoop… who came along with Warren G in what proved to be the best value for money arrangement I’ve experienced thus far – I tried to make a purchase on Letgo, then the seller ghosted me. This should be grounds for reporting the user, but it’s also too much work for a two week holiday.

Actually, no. Scratch that. The guys that can make the value for money claim would have to be the people standing right in front of the stage as Snoop ‘fired’ money into the crowd. I don’t even care that he might have been firing dollar bills, they got some of their money back and I didn’t.

I had to leave before the Doggfather left the stage because of the madness that was bound to fill the air, and by extension, the exits, as soon as the show ended. And thus begun ‘The Walk’. It was not the first.

I walk this empty road, the only road that I have ever known….

Earlier in the day I tried to convince myself I’d be able to find the train and make my way around downtown Calgary, but a couple of valid points kept rearing their ugly heads – I’ve only ever used the train once since I got here, but I was preoccupied, there was the real possibility that if I made any mistake with regards to the train, its ticket and a fabled stamp, I’d incur a fine of about $250 or so (at this point, I was well aware that while Canadians are friendly, the government doesn’t accept Monopoly money, also, and I think this is very important, I had no way of knowing that if I positioned myself in the right place at a concert, I’d be showering in dollar bills). Long story short, I decided to walk.

Whoever came up with the expression, “Google is your friend” never hang out with the Maps side of the family. To be fair, we all have that one indecisive friend that keeps flip-flopping and telling you to cross the road, then asks to re-calibrate your position and then realises that you probably shouldn’t have crossed the road and tries to make up for it by implying that he knows a shortcut… except that he doesn’t, so he asks to re-calibrate again, forcing you to walk over to a stranger and ask for directions.

I did end up at the location I was looking for, a couple of valiant calories died in the effort, but it was worth it. Until it wasn’t – turns out they didn’t welcome ‘walk-ins’, but they helpfully offered a URL.

Unlike some of the offices back home, no one had any problem with me sitting in the waiting area as I regained my breath and gathered my bearings…and offered Google Maps the chance to make good.

Moments later I was heading to the Core to grab a bite, where the meals made no secret of how many calories they were pumping into my body, but that’s not the point here. This paragraph exists just so I can justify placing a picture of a head here.

A day later, I was in a bar watching a live band (is there any other kind?) with the very talented Jenni Heaven – who you can find on instagram – https://www.instagram.com/jenniheavenofficial/

Instgram – Go to Instagram already.

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