Ms. Mod's European Adventure

Discussion in 'News' started by Moderator, Nov 8, 2013.

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    Moderator Ms. Mod Administrator

    I will be traveling with Stephen on his book tour in Paris and Germany so will be on different hours for moderation for the next couple of weeks and my ability to be on line will be hit or miss. What I am hoping to do is to keep you informed by way of this thread with daily updates and photos. I will also be taking Instagram photos to post on Stephen's Facebook page which you can find here and adding them to the Gallery XIX area for those who are not on Facebook.

    Stay tuned!
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    Day 1 (Tuesday)

    Arrived on a gray, drizzly day but even that could not diminish the beauty of Paris. An extra treat was seeing the street ad promo sign for Doctor Sleep. After a short rest at the hotel, it was on to the European American Press Conference that we were told had the best attendance they have ever had for a guest, including journalists who would normally not consider attending a press conference venue. Stephen was received with much excitement and did a wonderful job answering all their questions. On the way back was able to catch a glimpse of the Eiffel Tower which was mostly shrouded in fog, and the Arc de Triomphe--iconic sites that I'd never imagined seeing in person and am still a bit in awe that I am. Was treated to an amazing multi (I lost count of how many!) course dinner and ended the evening very late for my jet-lagged body but it was worth it! Today we will be off to the book signing--more later....

    [​IMG]
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    Day 2 (Wednesday)

    Oh, my goodness! As we're driving to the book signing at MK2, we're told that they have over 3,000!! people lined up, many having spent the night in the rain for their chance for an autograph. It felt very much like a rock star event as a TV crew had been following Stephen for the past couple of days and were filming as we exited the van to the cheers of those waiting at the door. After settling in, I was able to walk out to the end of the line to take a pic of fans hoping for their chance in spite of knowing that there would only be two hours for the signing and Stephen would in all likelihood not be able to get to them. He was able to sign about 500 autographs in the two hours and it was sad to have to disappoint so many but it would have been much more than he could do to stay for everyone who showed up.

    The evening was a special treat, not a fan event. We were taken to dinner and the show at Moulin Rouge. What a fabulous experience! The dinner was delicious and the show was amazing. Never having attended something similar (I was surprised to learn that Stephen had never been to something like this either), we had nothing to compare it to but the costumes and sets, and of course the dancers, were incredible. Many of the songs were in English and the first act which was a band and a female and male singer performed mostly in English--covers of older songs. We were taken backstage before the dancers began their acts to meet some of the female stars of the show--I'm now regretting that I declined having my picture taken with them but will still have the memory of the experience. As many of you know, I am not a fan of snakes. After having watched the video on their web site, I'd been prepared for the part of the show where one of the dancers is in a tank of water with several snakes--VERY BIG snakes!!!--so knew it was coming but my skin is still crawling when I think of it. *shiver* Another late night and fairly early morning for Thursday but apparently sleep is overrated when you're in Paris. :) More later.....
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    Day 3 (Thursday)

    The morning began with a radio interview for France Inter, "La Matinale". It was fascinating to watch the interpreter do nearly simultaneous translations both for Stephen so that he could understand the questions and then Stephen's responses. There were also three lucky fans who had won a contest to be able to come to the show to ask questions. They talked about both his books and movies.

    France Inter.jpg

    The evening event was an interview with François Busnel for the TV show La Grande Librairie. We were told this was a very big deal as the entire show was dedicated to Stephen. I was not able to take my camera with me into the audience so unfortunately do not have any pics to be able to share with you. Stephen did a wonderful job and the same interpreter who had been at the morning radio interview is the voice you would hear once videos are available. We were also told they had triple the usual number of requests for tickets to the audience.

    The timing on the return from the studio was perfect to catch the light show of the Eiffel (which I have now learned to pronounce correctly as "Ef fell", not "I fill") Tower which happens on the hour for 5 minutes. The entire tower is lit with a twinkling light show and is absolutely enchanting! We had not been out at the right time to see it previously so was very happy to finally see it before we leave. Now if only I had remembered that I could have taken video with my iPhone! :( On the way to the studio also crossed over the bridge where there is a 1/10th scale statue of the Statue of Liberty that was donated by the City of New York as a return gesture for having received the one in NYC. I had not known there was one or had forgotten it but it was a bit surreal to see it. I wasn't quite sure I was seeing what I thought I was seeing (I was only seeing it from the back side as it was on a bridge facing the river) but the driver of the van confirmed it was indeed a copy and had been donated by the City of NY.

    to be continued.....
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    Day 4 (Friday)

    Today's PR was an interview for Le Mouv, a rock radio station, and had an entire audience of SK fans as guests. The interview included a wide range of topics--not sure when it will air but think it was live. Shasta, check out the shirt. ;)

    LeMouv.jpg
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    Day 5 (Saturday)

    I have to keep looking at the Itinerary to remind myself of what we've done so that I'll know what day it is. :wink2: This week has been a blur!

    In the morning and early afternoon, we got to do fun sightseeing things--a guided tour of *some* of Le Louvre as we simply did not have time to see it all but I think you could spend days there and still not really see it all. I hadn't realized that there is a section that had been excavated (I think in the '80s?) to reveal the original castle that was on the site. Only the lowest section of its walls remained but some of the masons' markings were still visible in some sections and our guide told us that they knew the same masons also worked on the Notre Dame cathedral as they'd found the same ones there as well. Having the guide to tell us some of the history of the artwork and explain its importance and how it may have changed artistic styles brought a much richer experience to seeing these works. And when you're with Stephen King, you get to go inside the barrier and step right up to the Mona Lisa. I suspect the people who had to be on the outside with us in the way while the guide was doing his thing and we were taking pics weren't quite as enthusiastic. ;)

    Following Le Louvre, we met in a brasserie with the moderator of the evening's event, Augustin Trapenard. I found it very surreal sitting outside sipping cappucino and having to remind myself "you're in Paris!!". From there on to the Jules Verne restaurant in Tour Eiffel. Unfortunately, it was a very overcast day so much of the view was obscured by fog but still amazing and the food exquisite. The pear souffle was to die for! And this was my first experience of eating pigeon--not bad!

    Back to the hotel for a couple hours rest before the next interview and then the grand finale at Grand Rex. Seating was general admission so fans had lined up early--some as early as 5 AM--to make sure they got good seats. Steve was greeted with enthusiastic cheers as he emerged from the van for a red carpet entrance. I was able to experience what it must have been like for those who did not speak English as the questions asked by the two moderators were in French and only Stephen's responses were translated. Fortunately, it was easy enough to catch what had been said in context with his responses. Have not seen any reviews this morning but it seemed to go well and the crowd appeared to be pleased.

    Here's proof that I really was there. :)

    Mona Lisa.jpg
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    Day 6 & 7 (Sunday & Monday)
    Warrior Center Good-bye photo copy.jpg Warrior Center reading copy.jpg
    Sunday was a travel day to Germany where we arrived at Ramstein AFB. I was tearing up a little as we taxied up to see a small contingent of soldiers and some of their family lined up at attention to greet us including I would guess a 7 and 9 year old little girl and boy dressed in their Sunday best. After being warmly greeted and taken to the hotel, we went to the mall adjacent to find a bite to eat. It took maybe two minutes before Stephen was recognized by the first person and I could whispers here and there and see eyes widen as others recognized him and asked for pictures for their cell phones as we walked along to find the Johnny Rockets. The gentleman taking orders there was an absolute hoot and was clearly someone who was "working it" to make the best of having to be working on what was supposed to be his day off. He wasn't just making a pitcher of lemonade--he had a keg! :) My hat is off to you, Terry! After a brief rest, it was on to assisting with signing 400 books that will be given away to those attending Monday's event and wounded soldiers, the USO center, and elsewhere. I can now add book flapper and packer to my resumé!

    Today was a visit to the hospital and Warrior Center at Landstuhl. It was a humbling experience to tour the hospital and then visit with soldiers at the Warrior Center where we stayed for lunch where coincidentally the soldier sitting opposite me is from Arizona so we were able to talk about what a beautiful state it is and his plans for the future. Tonight will be the event for the public. More later about that but in the meantime a couple of pics from the Warrior Center.
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2013
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    Moderator Ms. Mod Administrator

    LOL I will fix the photos later so they are not upside down but have to run for a few minutes.
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    Day 7 & 8 (Monday and Tuesday)

    Unfortunately, was not able to attend events Monday night or most of the day Tuesday due to sprained knee but the reports that I heard were that Stephen did a great job in Ramstein and Munich. I was told that the Hercules Theater at Ramstein holds about 375-385 people and that they'd had at least triple that number for requests for seats. Several people who'd stopped Steve while he was at the Mall area had told him they'd tried to get them but hadn't been able to do so, so they were very happy to at least be able to get a photo taken with their cell phones.

    Tuesday's events were in Munich. We were greeted by representatives from his publisher, Heyne, and first taken to their offices where he received a very warm welcome from the staff. After pre-signing books for the evening event, we were taken to a local authentic Bavarian restaurant for lunch. The female wait staff wore what I would guess were traditional Bavarian costumes and the food was delicious but I'm beginning to wonder about the notion we have that Americans eat a lot more food than European cultures. Perhaps that's true in the home setting, but I haven't seen any evidence of that in the restaurants. The evening's event was at Circus Krone--approximately 2,500 seating capacity, and a theater in the round as it really is used for circus performances. Unfortunately I don't have any pictures to share from there but the publisher has told us that it was a great success.

    Here's a shot of the poster advertising the event that the publisher sent me.

    KingCircus.jpg
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2013
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    Day 9 (Wednesday)

    On to Hamburg, where the first stop was for a press conference for print, radio, and TV so chances are some will be heard/shown today and the print not until tomorrow.

    Later tonight will be the event at Congress Centre Hamburg--a sold out crowd of 4,500! More later.

    Here are a couple photos taken while at the press conference.

    Hamburg press conference.jpg view from Hamburg press conference.jpg
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