I just had a near-death experience - in the touring sense. Canadian customs took an interest in me. I was in there two hours.
I don't have a work visa for Canada. I have one for America but last time I drove across the Canadian border for a few shows I had no problem, but this time...
Finally a nice lady took pity on me I think and let me in for two weeks - so it's not as bad as it could have been.
It's a small miracle. I'd deleted the dates from my website but they still found references to Canada elsewhere.
I feel like such a fool. I should have just bought the work visa but it is so much paper work and it is expensive. I almost let-down my designated drive who responded to my request for help and has already booked his flight into Montreal and out of Seattle. He's coming all the way from Cologne, Germany.
I was sure they were going to bar me. I was planning what to do next - to go back to Springfield and drown my sorrows, and then cobble together some last-minute shows to get me across the States to pick-up the rest of the dates. And then I couldn't get into NXNE - the big Canadian festival - which I've already booked flights to.
As it is, I have to leave the country on May 8th so half my tour is blown out - unless I can re-apply and they'll let me in again on another 2-week visa.
If not I'll go down to Chicago, Madison, get some last-minute shows where I can and hobble across to pick-up the tour on the West coast.
Sitting there with my dick in my hand feeling like the biggest fool on the road - it was a truly life-changing experience. I haven't felt so alone in the world for a long time. I'd put so much work into getting those dates together. I just couldn't face begging for last-minute shows and driving all the way across the states. I really felt like giving up. It was a massive slap in the face.
On the up-side - it has made me reconsider the European tour. Doing such a huge whirl-wind trip would make sense if I had a lot of publicity but not by myself. Better to wait until I have some help. Instead I'll just go with the paying shows in countries that can afford me. At least I definitely have a visa for that.
But what a fool. I knew the risks - I've heard of bands getting barred before but I thought I would be ok driving through on my own.
I have to play the first show in a minute and really don't feel like doing it. There are only eight people in the bar. I want to get a motel room and sleep for a few days. It was 10 hours travelling today.
A rough day.