I read somewhere that Max once said “Bruce makes you do things you never thought you could do.” Well, for me this certainly is true.
Firstly, I have never before admired any entertainer (and no, I don’t think this word even begins to describe what Bruce does) so much and made such a study of his work. I have never allowed anybody except my nearest and dearest to have such an influence on my life. In this, the internet is of course an immense help.
Secondly, I have never readily admitted to admiring somebody whom nobody in my life knows or share my interest in. I do not enjoy this situation, but luckily the internet is there to help.
Thirdly, I have not really grasped the idea of a virtual community before Clarence’s death. Reading post after post after post about the loss and sorrow so many fans experienced, made me really feel like I was not alone. And of course I am now experiencing it in a more joyful way, with so many people I have never met sharing in my joy about the tour, the tour dates and my quest to see Bruce live.
Before officially adding seeing a Springsteen concert to my bucket list on fb somewhere in this year, I have never committed to doing something so far out of my comfort zone. And of course some small part inside of me secretly believed he would never tour again, so I will never have to test myself on this one.
Before a fellow writer who lives in Warsaw undertook a seven hour train journey to meet me in Germany last year, I have never formed such a special relationship with somebody I have never met. That meeting was a ball – and this year we are doing it again when I visit my son in Norway.
I have also never made a date to venture overseas with somebody I have only briefly met on one occasion before. But thanks to facebook I found a fellow Bruce fan (and fellow writer) in my country and we are virtually on our way to Sunderland and Manchester.
Lastly, I have never travelled on my own anywhere outside my country. But to see Bruce in Norway I will have to do just that, as my dearest son declared himself utterly unavailable to accompany me. Not that I have invited him – I do not want anybody to spoil this for me!
So you see, I can’t even find my comfort zone any more. And yes, I am terrified of the many things that can go wrong. (The first of course just being unable to get tickets for the venues which I can attend.) But I will bravely (or not so bravely!) soldier on, because this is about so much more than just a middle aged woman striving to see an ageing rock star live before he retires (not that I can picture Bruce ever doing that!). This is about having found someone whose work inspires, entertains, amuses and intrigues me. It is about shaping my own little career as a writer at this rather late stage of my life. It is about testing my own limits, about doing something just for myself. It is about reaching out to strangers, about making that connection, about feeling the fear and going straight through it.
I have spent quite a significant part of my life deep in the badlands of depression and trying to be somebody that I was not meant to be. I have spent years committing totally to my family and fighting to keep us together in the very materialistic and often dangerous society we live in.
Now it is my turn to do what I want to do.