Over the years as our daughter has grown up, we've had quite a few nights with extra folk staying over - from girlie sleepovers to friends crashing after parties or a night out down town - so when she asked me last summer if I'd put up a musician from London coming to play at her birthday 'bash', I said "Sure. Fine." And then, when she announced the start-up of a promotions company and said "Would I mind putting up some bands?", I said 'Sure. Fine" ......and then began to wonder quite what I'd let myself in for.....
After all, we're talking rock bands. They're, like, drunk all the time, partying all night, and smashing guitars and furniture, aren't they? and they're going to be sleeping on my living room floor..... Should I move all the ornaments? Cover the pale carpet with something easy to clean down? And then there's the normal problems of sleepovers - for slumber parties everyone brings a sleeping bag, for crashing-out they slump on the sofa and get an old blanket thrown over them, but what does a rock star expect? I was starting to get a bit nervy about all this.....
Anyway, we picked up a free-cycled folding bed, bought some more pillows, and crossed our fingers. The first 'sleepover' was to be just two guys ....till the day before, when I discovered there would actually be three. Fine - the sofa's a bit short but line the seat cushions up on the floor and it'll be great. Second time, we were expecting four overnight guests . Fine - we'd coped with three, four wouldn't be much more trouble... get a double blow up bed, sleep them head to toe....then we found out they had a driver .....but we muddled through again.
But what about that rock'n'roll lifestyle? The drink, the drugs, the partying?
It's a myth!
By the time these guys get here, they've driven all day, played a gig, and just want to crash out. Next morning, they're heading off for another day of travelling, ending with another gig, and another night on a stranger's floor.
And, at the risk of making them blush, they've all been such lovely guys - they've washed their breakfast pots, complimented me on my jam; we've talked about anything and everything - attitudes to on-line music streaming, the (sometimes intrusive) expectations of fans, the shock of going from street-busking one day to nationwide tour the next after being 'discovered', books, favourite parts of Scotland, having to use a family hatchback as 'tour bus', ...and, of course, our dog who refuses to be left out of anything!
So far, despite a few last minute panics, I've loved having them all to stay ....... and I've hoping one day I'll see one (or more) of them on TV or plastered across a gossip mag front page, and I can say "I know him! He's slept on my floor!"