We drove all the way to New York City on Monday night, arrived in Brooklyn where we would stay for the next few days. Brooklyn, our home away from home (one of many, at least!). All tired, it didn’t take long before we went to bed and gave in to Morpheus.
A clear blue sky awaited us on Tuesday morning. No doubt about it, it was an early spring we eagerly longed for. We had breakfast, and the guys then took their paper cups of coffee outside to enjoy the warmth the city had to offer. 4 steps outside, on the sidewalk, a police car quickly drives up to us and stops by our side:
Police officer, with a suspicious look behind his sunglasses:
– Good morning, gentlemen. What is this you are drinking so early in the morning?
Jeff, clueless about this first contact by the American police:
– Well, that’s coffee, sir.
Police officer, with a desire to shake Jeff’s conviction of actually drinking coffee:
– Coffee, uh?
Jeff, not knowing what to say anymore:
– Yes, coffee, you know, we are a band and we are playing at the Pianos tonight, we are from Canada and…
Police officer, interrupting Jeff:
– Ah, Canada, EH? Ha ha ha! Well, have a good day, gentlemen! (Leaves laughing)
A few moments after this peculiar encounter with police officers, I was leaving home to welcome the bus full of travellers that were coming to NYC to see the band perform tonight. For many of them, it was their first time in NYC, for some their first time outside the country. I waited, waited, waited. I was super excited, figuring out where I would be when they would arrive in front of the Pianos where YFE was to play in a few hours.
Random guy parked in front of the venue when I got there.
– Lady, what are you doing here alone outside?
Me, super excited:
– I’m waiting for my friends to arrive!
– They’re not really good friends for making you wait for so long.
Me, half insulted and half amused:
– You can’t understand. They’re 50, from all over the world, they’re in a bus and many are coming here for the very first time, so I need to see them as soon as they get here! (Looking at my phone) Oh well, I just received a text message and they can’t make it here, so the bus has dropped them somewhere else. Good day, sir!
So much for my excitement of seeing everyone get off the bus…!
I walked to the Starbucks, and finally met with everyone. I couldn’t help but think of my first time in NYC, when I was 16, during an organized school trip. Although we somewhat looked like this, we also looked totally different. This time, there was a unity like I have rarely seen before. Many people had met for the first time less than 12 hours earlier, but the bond was already pretty strong. And then we headed out to explore the city!
The day went by quickly, and very soon it was time for the concert. It was my first time staying at the venue and waiting for the band to come back for the show; I usually go back home with them. The excitement got somewhat more intense though; for the first time in forever, I could live the excitement of waiting for my favorite band to get on stage! The concert was out of this world. The band was raging on stage, and the crowd was giving it back to them in a wonderful way. It was the first time for people to see Miss Isabel play with 2 keyboards, but also the very first time for them to see Alex play keyboard and guitar live. And the reaction when that happened? People went MAD! The sound was clear in the room, we could hear all the little details that make Your Favorite Enemies’ music so unique, and it helped in bringing the whole experience to another level. The chemistry between the band members was deep and intense, though there was nothing to let you see it; you could just feel it through their music. It was a brand new YFE; assumed, arrogant, in your face, yet all in subtlety and very inclusive.
The show over, it was time for our traditional toast on Times Square. Despite the cloudless blue sky we had seen all day long, it was now raining over Manhattan, forcing to reschedule the toast inside the bus instead. But once we got there, without a word said, we all wanted to go anyway. We walked the block that separated us from the eternal artificial daylight that shines on Times Square, and then the rain stopped. As if New York was telling us that she had allowed this very specific moment only for us. As if the city itself was allowing us to have that moment. As if it was telling us that indeed, nothing could stop us. As long as we’d be willing to confront the circumstances, not allowing our fears to take over, everything would work out.
We came back home past 4:00am. Went to bed at past 5:00am. For many of us, the adrenaline of the toast that had just happened took over our need to sleep and it was hard to drift off, somehow… And it made the morning come way too fast! After a breakfast punctuated with laughter and stories, we headed out to our traditional stops on departure day; Starbucks on North 7, Rough Trade Records, and the Bushwick Inlet Park where we have a “goodbye toast”.
The wind was strong and awfully cold. Being by the side of the river, nothing could tame it down it either. It is with shaking hands and shivering that we walked all the way to the river, to that same place we always go. But this time, we could go further in on that little strip of land that goes well into the river. Every time we go there, we manage to go a step further on that little strip, as if the city was once again approving of us and every step that we were taking in our journey. And somehow, that cold wind was there to remind us that even though we might not always feel comfortable as we walk, the journey is always unexpectedly worth it.
As someone famously sang, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere”
And “making it” is still being together, still being passionate, still being alive. All over again. Whatever it means.
PS: Behind the scenes videos have been uploaded on the band’s fan club, the SFCC! Make sure to check them out!