Day 18: Tuesday, July 21


Phil Woods


Phil was very sick with fluish symptoms. Ironic in that he did all the right things on the two days off: slept well, swam, napped, and ate right. No fair!

July in Spain can be hot and it was real hot! We rode the bus eight hours to an area 45 minutes west of Madrid, Spain, and performed in the courtyard of the Royal Monastery of San Lorenzo of El Escorial. This is a massive building founded by Spain's King Felipe II in 1563 and completed in 1584. It was the autumn residence of Spanish kings during the 17th through the 19th centuries and most of the Spanish kings are buried in the mausoleum. There is information in travel books indicating the bodies were dried out for 15 or 20 years before actual interment (the BOTB loves that concept), but I'm not sure that I understand the theory. We performed for a summer subscription series; many of the attendees were studying in the area for the summer. The band sounded excellent and Phil felt the audience wasn't too enthusiastic (it was pretty obvious), so he announced "Our final selection is Repetition. Your indifference tonight has been overwhelming." It was one of the few concerts of the tour that we didn't end with Phil's theme song How's Your Mama? and of course no encore like so many of the audiences demanded. Another irony involved the feeling that this was the lamest audience of the tour on the same night that Phil did what he had to do to perform while ill. We returned to the hotel at 12:45 a.m. and it was not air-conditioned! Our rooms were at least 90 degrees. Help! Wasn't the hotel in Norway air-conditioned? Spain is not? Hang rating: -9.90. Wake-up calls were set for 4:30 a.m., a good time to call home.

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