On Monday night my world was shocked to the core, like millions of others, billions maybe, the day no concert or public event would ever be the same for anyone.
22 years ago this year I attended my first concert, take that in Hammersmith, I was only 13 years of age, I travelled with my friend and her parents and we went off, screamed our little heads off and at the end her parents were there to greet us (at least I think it was hers, it could have been mine) and take us home, this continued up until my late teens and then with family life I stopped going apart from the odd westlife concert, I say odd me and my sister went all over the uk one year to see them, the year they split and one of those venues was Manchester arena.
I cannot for the life of me recall what it looks like or how it was laid out, I can remember Liverpool, Cardiff, Birmingham, London, Newcastle (I went to see one direction almost two years ago with her), I can’t place anything at all, maybe I’ve blocked it out because of everything but what scares me the most is never in a million years did I ever think I’d go into an arena and never come out alive again but what scares me more than that is this, myself and my sister in our later concert going days we would never sit together (just Birmingham when we were front row and new kids on the block), all those concerts we attended and now thinking back of if it had of happened one of those nights my sister would have been all alone, scared and not knowing what to do.
With every act of terroism I watch the news and of course I worry but this has left me shocked, it’s left me scared and it’s left me with these thoughts: because of what ‘they did’ no concert will ever be the same, no act playing will ever be the same, no member of staff will ever be the same and no person ever going to a concert will ever be quite the same. Over time, we shall forget what happened, pushed back to the back of our minds but for those 20000 odd people, their lives have been turned upside down, it’s not just the people that watched the show, it’s the staff, the medical teams, the police, the public, the arena staff, all those people that probably run well into 30000 maybe more, those little girls (and boys) who probably waited months, maybe years to attend their first concert will probably never want to go to another concert, maybe not for a very long time, maybe never, those people that work their may never want to work there again, those parents who waited outside for their kids to come out will never want to buy another concert ticket again and while maybe I shouldn’t focus on that, it’s not the main issue here, the loss of life and the injured are more important but I’m thinking long term and how it will shape our future, Westminster bridge for example, commuters will use that bridge as it might be their only way into work. Tourist will still come, the same as New York (to name a couple of these terrible events) but this is quite different, it’s not out in the open where running is an option, it’s in an enclosed space, you have to think about buying that ticket, walking over the bridge to get to work is different in a way, you have options on how to get there but this is a choice, this is something that we can either stick two fingers up to and say we will carry on or we can stop, even for a while to collect our thoughts, our prayers and our breath.
Take care v x