encircle me, i need to be taken down (tegan & sara, 11.24-25.13)

Before anything else: Andrea’s account of this two-day saga is up at her WordPress: mabuhaydiy.wordpress.com

ALSO: There’s a fantastic Issuu file by Teks on the Tegan and Sara Experience, and it is right here. It is fucking awesome.

Canadian indie duo Tegan & Sara played in the Philippines for the first time on Monday night and we were there — and boy, were we there really early.

Go for Gold: Guess what time these competitive Caps arrived? Yep.
How to Go for Gold at the Tegan and Sara concert: Gates open: 7 p.m. Arrive at gates: 9:30 a.m. WHAT IS EARLY. WHAT IS SLEEP.

But here I am already getting ahead of myself. Our two-day Tegan & Sara journey began even before we arrived 10 hours early for the concert on Monday night. Truth: Our epic saga began on Sunday at Greenbelt, when we arrived also 10 hours early for the Meet & Greet scheduled at 6 p.m. I figured — Well, I have Sunday free. Why the hell not?

Why the hell not, indeed.

Sunday, 24 Nov. Meet & Greet, Greenbelt 5 Fashion Walk.
Event schedule: 6 p.m.
Arrive at venue: 8:30 a.m. (Iba nga ata talaga ang time zone namin lol)

We got wind of the Meet and Greet rather late — it was already Friday when Andrea texted me about it, after hearing about it through a friend. There were two ways to go about it — you could (1) buy 1,5k worth of goods from Greenbelt and exchange it for a Meet and Greet ticket, or (2) buy a Heartthrob CD at the venue on the day itself.

And while I am actually already past that stage where I want to rant about certain inefficiencies, I’d like to note here for the sake of accuracy a few things we knew as of 9 a.m. on Sunday: (1) The 1,5k tix were already sold out, and (2) They were only selling 50-100 CDs so you better come early. That’s it. We had no idea about the planned scenario — I don’t know if there was information elsewhere, but it felt a lot like being kept in the dark. But no big. We managed to snag the first two CDs on sale that day, some 2 Masses later (I mean, we were at Greenbelt early enough to catch the first few early Masses, seriously), then we decided to have some early lunch before heading into Gbelt 1 cinemas for the first showing of Catching Fire (So, so good, btw — watch it!) with earlybirds Marie, Golda and Karen.

We were told to come back after lunch to “exchange” the Admit One stubs originally issued with Meet and Greet ones. It was a messy affair — nobody seemed to know the real score, and our only saving grace, it seemed, was the fact that we were there hella early. Haha. Thank God for small mercies.

The real score began to dawn upon everyone around 6-ish when they started announcing house rules: Meet and Greet ticket holders (read: the P1,5k tix) would get an exclusive photo opportunity with the twins courtesy of Picture City, but no autographs. Meanwhile, those who bought CDs (read: the P450 tix, as that is the cost of the CD) could have their CDs autographed, but no photos. 

The thing about announcing these things so late in the game is that it doesn’t allow for much adjustment on the part of the participants. Perhaps, that was the point.

So ANYWAY — onto the good parts: Here are a few things I loved about the Meet and Greet:

– All that screaming when Tegan and Sara filed into Chateau 1771. It was an amazing sight: All these girls standing on top of chairs and the Ayala security panicking to tell everyone to get down because the chairs were not made for standing. HAHA.

– Seeing their precious faces for the first time. Good lord, I knew they were attractive, but nothing could have prepared me for how really attractive they were. Like, GOD. Take my ovaries.

– All that hugging on stage. I loved how welcoming and accommodating they were during the Meet and Greet. Chaos aside, seeing all these fans really happy made me happy as well. All shenanigans pushed away, the bottom line: They’re here. Breathing the same air. Hahaha.

– Seeing them hugging Andrea after she gave them her merbird art (MORE ON THAT LATER OMG)

– Having my vocabulary reduced to: “Welcome to Manila” as I watched them sign the inlay of my CD

– TEGAN LOOKING ME IN THE EYE AND SAYING, “Thank you, we love it here,” in response. #DYING2013

Capped the night with dinner/dessert with Marie, Karen, Liana and Evee, who caught up with us after the event. We jammed with Andrea’s ukulele and chased cats and well, if that wasn’t Sunday well spent. Hmm.

Hey there earlybirds: Karen, Marie, Andrea, Golda. Thanks for the wonderful company, girls! :)
Hey there earlybirds: Karen, Marie, Andrea, Golda. Thanks for the wonderful company, girls! 🙂
Mission success.
Mission success.

Monday, 25 Nov. D-Day, NBC Tent.
Event schedule: 7 p.m. (Gates open)
Arrive at venue: 9:30 a.m. (Yung totoo, GMT +ano ang time zone haha)

If this were a movie, its subtitle would be Capricorns attending Concerts in other Time Zones hahaha

So yes. We were there early. I mean, I remember getting hooked on The Con a handful of years back and thinking, God, if I could hear this song live– So yeah. When you have songs like that, and bands like this you really tend to go on leave on a Monday and clear your sched just to be there first thing.

We arrived at 9:30 and met a handful of other early birds. It was pretty cool. As you get older, meeting new people gets progressively harder, and I am thankful for the many new (beautiful! :)) faces I saw on the day of the show. You guys made the concert extra special. 🙂

Fenced in! Thanks girls for making lining up for xx hours so enjoyable :)
Fenced in! Thanks girls for making lining up for xx hours so enjoyable 🙂 Photo from Marie’s FB. Thanks Marie! =)

Other notable highlights while in line: Posing with the bouncers (MORE ON THIS LATER OMG), the Neverending Onion Rings Stash, ang Mahiwagang Clover, the Yellow Cab Group, one line one line LOL, “white van!”, The Let’s Not Talk for Five Minutes Game, side discoveries: PH Clone Club (!!! — let’s talk!) and Orange fans, Ate Merch (who understands our needs), The International Grand Finals of That’s My Tomboy, “You think we’d get a copy of ‘Blue is the Warmest Color’ from someone on this line?”, “Oh my God, hindi pa ubos ang Onion Rings,” etc etc.

(Just stringing those nonsensical snippets together made me smile.)

We started going in sometime past 7. Throughout the day, we had taken the initiative to organize the line — the girls from the Tegan and Sara Philippines group (Shoutout! You are amazing!) wanted to make it a point that this wasn’t going to be as messy as the night prior. Fantastic idea.

Anyway. By 6:30 p.m. everybody was already buzzing with excitement. We started playing that Quiet Game to conserve energy, but it seemed like all that energy wanted to find a way out elsewhere — I was continuously fidgeting lol.

When we finally got in, the first thing I did was take a deep breath: Shit was about to get real, and it was about to do so really fast. Be still my heart!

Up Dharma Down opened the show — fantastic as always. What a way to warm-up, really.

Up Dharma opening with "Indak"
Up Dharma opening with “Indak”

Before the show began, somebody showed me a signed copy of the night’s setlist. I counted 21 songs, including 2 songs for their encore. Just seeing a couple of songs on that list made my heart drop! Thanks Marie for showing this to me:

The Con x Nineteen = Life Made.
The Con x Nineteen = Life Made.

We wanted them to open with Drove Me Wild. I remember walking in Eastwood a few months back and hearing this song randomly on the PA, and we were like, Imagine if this were in an actual concert. Omygod. I love it when the Universe listens to me.

Also: Mabenta pa rin yung two-syllable “Wiiii-yeldddd” haha. Wild talaga.

It was a fast-paced show that rarely offered pause — not a complaint, but man my chest hurt because my HEART you guys.

The banter nearly killed me — not enough, as always, but then they started saying something about dedicating something to everyone under twenty and I kind of died:

(Fine, disclosure: So I wasn’t Nineteen when I first heard this. But it sure brought me back to that crucial year. Hehe. Pwede na rin.)

I said this year would be the year I would hear “Your Ex-Lover is Dead” (Stars), “Sweet Disposition” (Temper Trap) and “The Con” live. Thanks for conspiring with me, Universe.

(The rest of the photos are on my Instagram, it’s open! @thegshift :))

As if this wasn’t enough kindness already, we have a couple more highlights:

– Andrea’s Merbirds on Tegan and Sara’s Instagram!

This was the HUGEST thing for Andrea. And I'm just here SPAZZING -- That's my girl's artwork! :) Way to go, love! :)
This was the HUGEST thing for Andrea. And I’m just here SPAZZING — That’s my girl’s artwork! 🙂 Way to go, love! 🙂

– On our way home that night, we had just retrieved our Clover chips from the bushes (LOL don’t ask) when one of the bouncers I had taken a photo with earlier in the day approached me with a flashlight. I legit thought I was getting arrested for leaving Clover chips in the bushes, but then he leaned in and handed something to me, saying, “May ibibigay ako sayong souvenir. Itago mo na lang.”

Buti pa si kuya nabigyan ako ng Media ID. Haha.
Buti pa si kuya nabigyan ako ng Media ID. Haha.

Imagine my surprise when I saw what he left inside my hand. THIS. ^^ Someone probably dropped it in the media area and he must have picked it up, and just. Wow. Astounding kindness is astounding. Thank you kuya! Night made!

I think we managed to make it home around midnight, our legs and feet sore and our hearts bursting at the seams.

I couldn’t wait to do this again. 🙂


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