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[I]t's the struggle, the fight to get it right, that makes U2 what it is." -- Larry

by Phil R

We all decided that a 9am meet-up time at the Arena would be about right, as thats when they should be letting everyone on to the parking lot of the lineup. Turned out we didnt move until about 10, but that was ok. There was a small snafu of trying to figure out if there would be an U2.com membership line for night 2. Seems the day started out with that, then not, then on, then not, then back on. That caused many people to scramble for membership cards or to get a print out of their UserID from U2.com at the local Kinkos. From what I could tell, we were never asked for these IDs that day. Though that process will most likely change as the tour progresses.

Becky, Joe, Sherry, Steve, Sandy, and I camped out for most of the day in the GA line. I went out and about several times of the day, but still managed to make some new friends in line. (As it turned out, the U2.com membership line!) Lets see what were the highlights of the day: having the Edge come out to sign for everyone there, and getting him to sign my copy of Out of Control, his reaction Whoa, theres an early one. I had no response; I was busy trying to get a photo. Sad; Bono stopped half way down the line and finally getting out to sign stuff, then working backwards. Yes, I was in the front third to the gate; a wonderful In-N-Out burger lunch; seeing the merchandising group struggle to get the new Vertigo merchandise bomb balloon up against the wind, then giving up; lots of Gatorade and food; missing some parts with the sun block.

No one in our group of six got the bonus of getting in to the inner part of the stage, which was starting to be referred to as the Bomb Shelter. Ah well. Sandy and I made it to the right side of the staging, 2nd layer of people, one from the rail. The rest went to the corner of the railing and camped there. The Kings of Leon were a little less loud, and I think a little better than opening night, but thats hard to tell right now.

Being as close to the stage as we were, and knowing Bono favored the right side helped us get up close to the action that happened on the stage. From Love Or Peace, to various Bono moments, it would primarily happen in front of us.

Here are my impressions of the 2nd show: MUCH better concert than first; the band was laughing at Bonos gaffs; pulling Iker, a fan from Mexico on stage for translations to Spanish; Bono grabbing an American flag; changing of the set list from opening night; Gloria live for the first time since about 1989!; With Or Without You again live; Bono hammering away on the drum even during the start of Sunday Bloody Sunday; at the end of Zoo Station, hearing Bono say Thats all folks! just like ZooTV era; still love the slightly toned down Elevation version, no bass or drums, just Edges guitar and Bono singing for the first 2 minutes; Bono nearly stopping 40 to get Edge back on tune and track; able to work in the United text messaging with results being shown up on screen; getting lots of help from the guy in front of me at the rail, I was trying to be nice in telling him how I wasn't trying to squish him and other such GA problems. In return he gave me a ONE bracelet for "being polite."

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