So, I am back home now safe and well, despite having the longest sleep known to man. I basically was up at 11am on Saturday morning, went to queue with my friends for the Grand Final at about 2pm, then stayed up all the way until I boarded my flight the next morning at 10:55am. Yes, I am mad, but it was all in the name of Eurovision. I wanted to soak up as much as I could in those last remaining hours as I knew it was coming to an end. I did get to sleep on the plane on the way home, and then when I did get home I ended up sleeping for about 15hours, not bad!
So did you watch the Grand Final? What did you make of it? The voting is pretty intense, right? I loved it, and I do think it is a great addition to the show. I know there is a lot of things in the press today about how Russia are kicking off about how they got trumped by the National Juries but that is exactly why they are there, to give a fair result. I did feel extremely bad for the Czech Republic, the first time they ever qualified for the final and then getting a grand total of 0 points from the public. I expect this was because of the extremely bad draw that they had, they performed 2nd and in between two uplifting songs, but still, it was pretty harsh to hear “zero points goes to Czech Republic”. Ouch.
So, in this blog, it’s time to look back on the week that was really. I had such a fantastic time from the get go, meeting up with many of my friends and then going on to meet so many new people who have warmed my heart with their love. I know people think that Eurovision is a kitsch and camp event and turn their nose up to it, but for me, there is so much more to Eurovision than just the live shows that you see on TV. Eurovision is like a massive bubble that if you get the chance to go to, you will never view it in the same way again. There are so many things you get to be a part of or can enjoy in your time there, going to the live shows is only a tiny part of that. In Stockholm, there was the EuroClub and Euro Fan Café under the same roof, which is very much a social place, and it all comes to life at night when Eurovision music plays all night long. There is the Eurovillage, which is more aimed for families and everybody can go to hang out, go to different stalls, see the Eurovision themed events happening on the main stage or just simply watch the big screens of the live shows or backstage extras. There is something for everyone, and Stockholm itself is a fantastic and beautiful city full of people who are so accepting, friendly and forward thinking who are also so hospitable. Even writing this blog right now I am getting a bit teary that it’s all over. I have heard of PED (post-eurovision depression) and I know some of my friends have had it in the past but I have never really felt it myself, just the lull after the shows have finished knowing you have another 12 months to get through until the next ones. This year though, for me, I really feel that low that everyone who is caught up in the bubble feel. I really don’t want to let go of that week in Stockholm and go back to reality, even though I know I have to. I think it was because this time I got so much more involved and came out of my shell a lot more to talk to and make friends with many new people. I know this isn’t over though, and I am already planning to attend more Eurovision related events later this year as well as going to Ukraine next year for the 2017 contest.
Oh yes, I forgot to talk about that. The winner, that is. Jamala from the Ukraine won the Grand Final with her song “1944” in a nail-biting final few moments when the public votes came in. I am very happy for her and even though I wasn’t particularly rooting for her to win, on the night, after she finished performing, something inside me told me that she was going to do it. The song is a very emotional techno ballad sang in Crimerian Tatar and English. This is also the second ever win for Ukraine, after Ruslana won back in 2004 with “Wild Dances”. I know Ukraine will put on a fantastic show next year, they will be wanting to promote their country in a good way after all of the negative and bad press they have received in recent years, and with the ongoing tensions with neighbouring Russia they will want to show them up a bit. Will it be as good as the shows in Stockholm? Probably not, but as long as there is Eurovision, I will be happy, and Kiev looks to be a very beautiful city and has always been on my bucket list of places to visit. I expect the contest will be in Kiev next year anyway, I can’t see it being anywhere else to be honest and security would be more efficient in the Capital city. We shall see.
I have uploaded a ton of photos from my trip away to my Flickr photostream, which you can see by clicking this link. I am still yet to put together my video but believe me, I have a ton of exciting content that I want to share with you all, so when the video has been created I will share it with you on my social networks, so watch out for that.
I will see you all again for the Eurovision 2017 season very soon, it all kicks off on September 1st 2016. Until then, you have my word that there will be no more Eurovision themed blogs.