During the introduction of the I Knew You Were Trouble music video there is the following sentence (or utterance, because she’s speaking it. Oh yeah, I remember things from my English A Level)
“I think, I think when it’s all over it just comes back in flashes, you know?
It’s like a kaleidoscope of memories which all comes back”
I feel like this pretty much sums up my current emotion / memory state in relation to the 1989 Tour.
It’s been two days since the Manchester leg of the 1989 World Tour and I honestly still believe I was there. I sent a text message to my friend, jokingly describing how before, during and after the concert the experience wouldn’t feel real. Well my jokes have become a reality because the fact I was stood in a crowd of 15000 people singing and dancing along to Miss Swift two nights ago? Yeah, it does not feel real. I have these memories of the night – the shaking and intense happiness at the beginning of Welcome to New York, the incredible speech’s before Clean and All You Had To Do Was Stay and the realisation that there was only 30 (ish) minutes remaining when I saw it was 10.10pm. When you’ve waited so long for something, I guess it’s expected to feel a little unreal.
The truth is that I have grown up with Taylor in my life, if my eleven year old self had not fallen in love with the fearless album I might not even be the same person. I’d like to think I wouldn’t be so different but seven years is a long time to have someone in your life. Or at least influencing your life.
My social media’s no longer illustrate my inner Taylor Swift fangirl, but go back three or four years (especially on instagram) and everything pretty much linked back to the country singer that had pretty much taken my heart the day I hear Love Story playing on the radio. My social sites now are more personalised I guess, maybe it’s a symptom of growing up or maybe it’s because I’ve chosen to express more of myself online. Who know’s, all I know is I still completely adore Taylor – how could I not? Her posters are still on my wall, her lyrics are still hand painted above my bed and a section of my shelf is still dedicated to her albums and merch. Although her influence within my life mirrors the stories of thousands, I still wouldn’t ask for anyone else to look up to.
I can still remember watching the music video for Teardrops On My Guitar and realising that “oh, this is the same girl that sings Love Story” and pretty much heading straight for YouTube to hunt for more music. Breathe and White Horse were the favourites.
I can still remember the phone call with my Grandma when I asked for the Fearless Platinum edition CD for Christmas in 2009 because owning the songs digitally was not enough. I still remember trying to convince my Grandma that fearless was a real word. That phone call conversation was tough.
I can still remember buying Taylor’s first album on the 27th December 2009 and having The Outside playing over and over again in my head when we traveled to the theater to watch a pantomime.
I can still remember the Speak Now and Red albums arriving on the Saturday, two days early and taking my laptop to my Grandma’s house so I could instantly listen instead of waiting until we went back home.
I still remember writing and essay in year 9 analysing why Miss Swift was a good role model (or something. In the end it turned out I (and 99% of the class) had completely done the project wrong. Apparently we had to include proof that the individual had not been to jail or done drugs. I mean how are we supposed to get proof for that kind of information, seriously)
I can still remember the disappointment when I realised I would have to wait five days after the release date to listen to 1989 because I was in France. Visiting Paris kind of softened that disappointment because PARIS.
I can still remember the sadness when we couldn’t go to the Speak Now tour. The sadness when the Red Tour only went to London. I’m thankful for the internet, living vicariously through others has been great. (This may be taken sarcastically. It isn’t, I swear.)
I can still remember the complete joy when I walked out of English on the Friday morning to find out the we, Gaby and I, had finally managed to get Taylor Swift tickets. Like what. Us. Two girls who had been listening to Taylor for seven years were finally going to see her. Incredible. Impossible.
Possible. Unreal. Amazing. (I can also hear my english teacher yelling because I’ve used the phrase “I can still remember” too many times.)
And so, at eighteen years of age, the age Taylor Swift was when we found her music, we finally experienced a Taylor Swift concert. Did I mention how dream-like this feels?
We were in block 216 row M aka full on side view seats, five rows from the back of the arena. Was this a terrible thing? Well, I realised the moment I took my seat if I jumped too furiously I might fall to my death because we were so high up. In relation to the show? Yeah, I think we had pretty good seats mainly because we could see everything. We could even see the back of the stage which resulted in several exciting moments were we could all see Taylor when everyone else couldn’t. Listen, I waited seven years for this the little things made me excited okay. It also didn’t help that I’m fascinated with behind the scenes stuff. Did I mention that we all received free light up wrist bands? Yeah the effect of those looked pretty amazing from way up high.
The truth is, I can’t even begin to put into words what happened on Wednesday evening. I know that throughout the whole thing I was basically stood there thinking “HOW IS THAT TAYLOR SWIFT RIGHT THERE. HOW AM I HERE. HOW HAVE I NOT LOST MY VOICE YET. HOW IS THIS REAL. HOW IS SHAKE IT OFF ALREADY PLAYING.”
There was a lot of external and internal screaming.
The memories of Wednesday night come back in flashes. Like a kaleidoscope. I remember reading somewhere that when you think of a memory, you aren’t remembering the actual event, but you are remembering the last the time you thought about the said memory. I’m glad I chose to watch, instead of trying to get the best videos and pictures possible (although the two video’s I did capture? Yeah, I will treasure those for the rest of my life).
The night of June 24th 2015 was magical and extraordinary. I was truly enchanted to be in the same room as you, Taylor Swift.