When I was asked in April if I wanted to specialize my studies at another university, I didn't have to think for a second. London was where I was going.
With the Bon Jovi tour long over by now and Richie finishing up his solo album, he just had to tour and he just had to go to London. He'd been there before and it's a big city, why wouldn't he go there?
Even tough I knew what I wanted to do, they advised me to at least think about it.
Okay, I've never been away from home, my family is a pretty close family and I'm 20. My college wasn't far from home so I didn't even move out, half an hour on a bus every day was the same as when I went to high school so it was completely fine by me to stay at home.
Going to London would be a big change, without my parents, my brothers and sisters but I'd have friends, I knew that. I never had friends in high school because I was that weirdo that liked 80's music and guys that could and are my dad's age. In fact, Richie is 3 months younger than my dad! But who cares?
Thanks to Facebook I did have a lot of friends all over the country and I was sure to meet them all. Of course I told them about the opportunity I had and they all loved the idea, my best friend loved it most of all. We've known each other for 3 years online but never met in real life.
So a week later I made my decision, I talked to the people I needed to at school and they would arrange everything. Full scholarship, I only had to pay my way there, I didn't even have to worry about housing. Perfect.
I already started imagining the crazy, hopeful things. Lots of friends, perfect grades, popularity and a boyfriend. All things I never had.
By the end of the academic year in July everything was settled and I spent my whole summer waiting for Richie's album and tour dates.
When he finally announced tour dates it took him ages to tell more! First Amsterdam, of course, I was going to London, he had to go too.
A week later someone posted on Facebook that she got her ticket to Richie's concert in London. So first I thought it couldn't be, he hadn't announced a date in London too. I opened the shared link and there it was, a concert in London, the venue confirmed it but Richie hadn't. I didn't know what to do. The concert in Amsterdam was sold out by now, what if London was sold out that fast too?
So what do I do?
"MOM!!!!!!" That's what I do.
"What?" Was the answer I got.
So I got up and went to the kitchen.
"Someone got tickets to Richie's concert in London but he hasn't announced a date yet." I explained.
"That's not very smart."
"But the venue says he's playing there, it's on their website and it says pre-sale starts Friday."
"How did that person get her ticket then?"
"She's a member or something of company that owns the venue, so she got a password and something like a pre-pre-sale." I explained what I understood of what I read.
"You don't have a password." My mum pointed out.
"I know but she posted a link to get passed that."
"I need a ticket." I said.
"Go for it."
I looked for my wallet and went back to the laptop, back to Facebook and started a chat with my friend, if I was going, so was she.
Half an hour later I posted on Facebook that I got my ticket to see Richie.
It was a big relief when Richie tweeted an hour later about the concert in London.
My friend and I figured everything out. We searched for buses, trains and hotels. We got us a cheap hotel since neither of us had much money but it was only for one night, so it couldn't be that bad.
In September I finally moved to London, packed all my Bon Jovi things, posters, t-shirts and my favourite mug.
The first week was scary but I soon found out a lot of people in my dorm were from different countries which sort of made it easier because we were all adjusting to being away from family.
I talked to my family almost every day and my sisters kept texting me to say they missed me, which made it harder for me too but I loved that they did it.
About after two weeks I started to feel a little home sick and every time I talked to my mum she told me to think of Richie's concert I was going to. Which gave me an idea. I downloaded an app on my phone to count down the days. 24 days, didn't seem bad at all.
Facebook was one bunch of excitement. My friend and I talked about the concert almost every day. Richie Sambora and The Disgusting Rabbies in 24 days, 23 days, 22 days.
We had discussed pretty much everything. We'd meet at the bus station around noon, then go to our hotel and get ready. We discussed our outfits way before the concert. I was going to wear my skinny jeans, with my awesome red boots and my tight red t-shirt. It was going to be perfect.
We even made jokes, kidnapping Richie and keeping him to ourselves, well to me, my friend is a year older than me and she's engaged, so I had to sacrifice myself, she couldn't do that to her fiancee. So if Richie spotted us in the crowd, I'd sacrifice myself to accompany him to his hotel room.
Sacrifice, that sounds like I wouldn't want to, on the contrary, hehe.
Finally my phone told me it was 1 more day.
I had gone a little crazy with our joke and expected it to happen even though I knew it wouldn't in the slightest possibility ever happen.
But the concert was tomorrow and I was incredibly nervous. I was so glad I didn't have any classes today and tomorrow, I wouldn't have paid attention to anything anyway.
The next morning I got up early, not that I slept much, I was way too excited to go to the concert.
I showered, did my hair and make-up and an hour later I was getting dressed in the outfit I decided on a month ago.
Standing in front of the mirror, I didn't look bad at all. Maybe Richie would notice me in the crowd. Yeah, who was I kidding?
I packed my back pack and was ready to meet my friend at the bus station.
I finally met my best friend! It was great to finally see her in real life and talk for real too.
We got on the tube and went on our way to Sheperd's Bush, our hotel was only 5 minutes from the venue so we could walk the rest. In only a few hours we would see Richie right there. Maybe he was already there?
We dropped out bags at the hotel, had a quick bite and went back to the venue. Still 5 hours until the show but we had to be front row, so we had to get in line.
The line took ages! But it was fun to talk to everyone, we even met more of our Facebook friends.
After what seemed an age they finally opened the doors and we finally got inside.