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My show reviews

NOVEMBER 1 & 2, 2013 - Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Warning: If I ever find out that the pictures displayed on this page end up on someone's website without my consent, or if some people try to remove the watermarks and try to resell these pictures, they will have to provide some good explanations. I will then have to remove my pictures and other visitors of my website will be deprived of them!

Becoming a teenager again for a weekend


Registration to the fan club trip and wait
Departure for Toronto
Arrival at the Westin Harbour Castle
Arrival at the Halloween welcome party of the fan club trip
Me, Rob and Bon Jovi's official photographer: David Bergman
My second meeting with Matt Bongiovi, Jon's brother
Pictures from the welcome party of the fan club trip
November 1: the day I would meet Jon again!
Arrival at the Air Canada Centre and pre-show party
Picture of our gang at the pre-show party
My second meeting with Jon and the courage that I had
November 1, 2013 set list
November 2: induction into the ACC hall of fame
We receive our gifts of the fan club trip
Bon Jovi banner on the roof of the Air Canada Centre
November 2, 2013 set list
It's not always as easy to get to the catwalk!
Very special Who Says You Can't Go Home for 5 women
Bon Jovi's star in the Air Canada Centre hall
Pictures of Jon with my friends
Returning back home

It's every woman's dream: becoming a teenager again for a weekend, with every benefit of being an adult (financial autonomy, freedom, maturity to take decisions, good friends, self-confidence, etc.) and without any disadvantage of a true teenager (disproportional body, mood swings because of hormones, acne problems because of hormones... anyway, you see what I mean).

Barely one month after coming back from Las Vegas, I had written to Rob and the other Runaway Tours staff members to thank them for the dream trip that I had just experienced because of them. Rob wrote to me at that time to tell me that they would be back in Canada in the fall. I admit that the idea of going on fan club trip again was going through my head since I returned from Las Vegas. My tour girlfriends, Maryse, Geneviève and Sandra, had also voice their wish to go on such a trip after reading my story and my experience during my picture with Jon. The only variable in the equation was the city referred to by Rob in his email; would it be Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver, the usual 3 most popular cities for the band?

I got a big surprise at the end of May 2013 when Maryse transferred us an email that she had just received in which Bon Jovi tour dates for the fall were written. Among them were Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal! In the same email, we also learned that there would be a fan club trip including a photo op with Jon in Toronto. It didn't take more for Maryse to jump on the occasion to ask us if we wanted to go on the trip, because she probably already saw herself beside Jon for a picture! Personally, there was no doubt in my mind now that the Canadian city that would host a fan club trip was known. I had never seen the band in Toronto and despite the fact that I loved living the experience of a meeting with Jon with my husband in Las Vegas, deep inside of me, I also wanted to have the opportunity to live this same experience with my tour girlfriends; a true girls trip during which I knew I would have a blast! As we told ourselves before leaving, it was going to be a weekend where we would get all dolled up for our stud, during which our only worries would be to wonder what we would wear, what we would eat and be ready on time for the shows and special events!

After settling a few logistics aspects each on our side, we came to the conclusion that we wanted to be alone with Jon on the picture, so we had to each take a single occupation room for the trip, for the modest sum of 1925$US each. It was a no brainer on my side; I already had a picture with Jon and my husband, I now absolutely wanted to be alone with Jon on the picture, because it was the normal course of events!

I will not hide that my "internal" relationship with Jon evolved a lot since I met him in April 2013. It's hard for me to find words to explain this evolution, but I would say that my first true contact with Jon was done in such a serene and simple way on my side that I know that my love and my admiration for him are now unconditional. At the end of times, when someone asks who will have been the greatest Bon Jovi fans, I will not hesitate to be one of the first people to raise their hand. I also feel a great inner peace to have met Jon and each time I look at the picture of Jon, my husband and I that I have framed at work, I remember that when we work hard in life, amazing things can happen. I work harder every day since this picture is part of my professional life... Moreover, when I feel a little down because of personal or professional difficulties, I can always count on my memory of my moment with Jon to calm myself and feel happy.

Registration and wait

I felt quite excited on the morning of June 7, 2013 when we could start sending our registration forms for the fan club trip that would be held from October 31 to November 3, 2013. Sandra had the mission to send her form with mine in a same email while specifying that we wanted to be seated together at the show on November 1. We each had to fill out a form, because it was the procedure to follow to have a single occupation room. Maryse and Geneviève did the same on their side. We would have quite liked to be seated together the four of us during the show, but we told ourselves that we had more chances of being all closer to the stage if we were two groups of two people.

The next morning, Runaway Tours wrote on their Facebook page that everyone who had sent a form for the Toronto trip were sure to have a spot on the trip. Let's say that it was a relief to know that even before receiving a confirmation by email and before having our credit cards charged. I was expecting nothing else; I haven't seen a fan club trip being sold out before several weeks! And there started the wait for the big trip for my 3 friends and my second appointment with Jon!

I must admit that I lived the wait for this trip very differently from the wait for the Las Vegas trip and very differently from my 3 other friends! I knew exactly what I would say to Jon and what I would wear in part! The stress of the first meeting was not there and made room for sane anticipation and assured excitement! My friends lived the wait a little like my wait for Las Vegas; they reminded me about the future trip every day or almost with the numerous emails on the topic and with countdowns of the number of nights remaining almost every week... To this day, I don't recall having received so many emails on the same topic in such a short timeframe! I can also understand; Maryse and Geneviève have been Bon Jovi fans for 25 years and Sandra for 31 years and none of them had met Jon up until now! The best that they had had were contacts with Jon during shows, just like me before Las Vegas!

However, I was stressed out by one thing which I would have gladly lived without. Since the trip included 3 nights at the hotel, we had concluded that there would be 2 shows in Toronto, but the band was slow in announcing the second show until September 9! I don't know if you are aware of it, but the four of us were verifying every day, several times per day since the beginning of June, Bon Jovi's website to see the second Toronto date appear! Jon had said, during a Q&A session with fans in England at the beginning of July, that there would be another show in Montreal and in Toronto. Even the Runaway Tours staff was not sure at some point that we would have a second show, because we were told that if there weren't a second concert, we would have a guided tour of Toronto on November 2! It's not quite what we wanted!! It was such a relief when the show on November 2 was announced in September and Runaway Tours confirmed that we would go to the second show without additional fees!!

For that matter, most of the shows on this tour were announced in dribs and drabs. It's really a weird way to proceed by announcing a few shows one week, a few more another week... We could also say that everything was going wrong during this tour: the first show of the tour was postponed at the last minute because of a legendary snowstorm in Connecticut, Richie was still not back with the band and we still didn't know the cause of his absence since the beginning of April... We learned that Tico, the drummer, underwent emergency surgery for an appendectomy and underwent another one, a few days later, for the gall bladder... Moreover, a few days before the shows in Toronto, Phil X's wife, the one replacing Richie, gave birth to a boy (congratulations Phil X)! I imagine that Phil X would have preferred being with his little family than on tour with the rest of the band... Anyway, I experienced tours with fewer unexpected events and twists like these!

My friend Isabelle S., who went to a little more than ten shows during the current tour in only a few months, was envious of me having registered for the trip in Toronto and she even told me during the summer that she would not even go to Toronto for the shows... I teased her a little by telling her that knowing her, I would not be surprised to learn a few weeks later that she would come to Toronto... Despite her protest at first, it was not a surprise for me to receive an email from her towards the end of the summer telling me that she had just been crazy and registered for the trip in Toronto with another one of her friends! I told her at that moment that she had to expect that I would tease her a little and she is quite aware that I would talk about this in my review!

Maryse and Geneviève had finally decided to take the fan club trip package without the show tickets by taking the chance to buy them themselves for both shows. They had bought tickets in the second row of the pit up front for November 1 through Ticketmaster and by an incredible chance, they were able to get tickets in the fifth row of the pit for November 2 through the fan club presale! Sandra and I had taken the trip package with tickets. However, during the evening on October 3 while I was calmly preparing my dinner, Isabelle called me panic-stricken to tell me that Ticketmaster had released pit tickets for November 2 and there was a pair remaining from what she could see by doing some searches... I immediately jumped on the computer to put the pair of tickets in my cart and I called Sandra to ask her if she wanted to be in the third row of the pit on November 2 for 496$ each ticket. She said yes, so I bought the last remaining pair not without a little stress caused by an error that Ticketmaster's website gave me at first! I was really happy with our decision and my amazing luck! I had not been closer than the fourth row in the pit!! Isabelle, thank you again for calling me that evening!

The Runaway Tours staff also confirmed to us, during the time when the second show in Toronto was announced, that the welcome party would be a Halloween party, since the trip was starting on October 31. Even if neither anyone of the four of us were very enthusiastic and too keen about the idea of finding ourselves a costume, Geneviève had a brilliant idea during an evening when we were sending emails to each other... Being a belly-dancing teacher in her spare times, she has a lot of outfits at home for the shows that she and her students give! I immediately adored the idea that the four of us could arrive at the welcome party dressed up as belly-dancers and during the evening, we agreed to do it!! For that matter, we met one evening at my house two weeks before leaving for the trip to try the outfits. Sandra decided that evening not to participate, but we still gave her the role of taking pictures during the welcome party instead!

I also knew that I had to go shopping for the rest of my clothes to wear for my second picture with Jon. The top was already determined in part, I still had to find accessories and pants appropriate for a Bon Jovi fan. I went back to Le Château to see the same stylist who had wisely advised me before the trip in Las Vegas. When she recognized me at the store, she was very happy to see me and I didn't want anyone else to give me advice on my clothes! As I was expecting, she found me beautiful trendy pants to wear that gave me a rock star look and accessories that I would have never dared buying. I was very satisfied with my purchases, but one of the accessories didn't quite live up to my expectations, so I went back to see her a few days later in order for her to suggest me another accessory of the same category. Afterwards, I was at peace and very satisfied with my purchases! I got good advice once more!

Faithful to my own tradition, I even made an appointment to get a manicure as I had done before my trip in Las Vegas. I still had to have perfect nails for my second picture with Jon!

Departure for Toronto and welcome party

I caught the "Bon Jovi buzz" about one week before leaving for Toronto... This feeling of being light-headed, being under the impression of being distracted, being emotional while listening to Bon Jovi songs that I would surely hear in concert... These states of mind do not fail: I was ready to leave!

I don't know how I succeeded in getting my big pile of personal stuff in only one suitcase, but I succeeded! Martin and I left the house on October 31 and we went to Sandra's house to pick her up on our way. Martin then dropped us directly to the bus station near his work which would bring us to Montreal Central Station. The ride was brief, but efficient. We arrived well in advance (about 8h30am) to Central Station and our train was leaving at 10h10am with a boarding at 9h40pm only. Sandra and I went to Tim Hortons so she could buy herself coffee and a bagel, because from what she had told me the previous day by email, if she didn't have her Tim coffee in the morning, she would do a temper tantrum! When we got to our boarding gate (#13), I saw Geneviève who seemed to be writing a message on her cellular phone. She didn't see us, but I only had to scream "Hey miss!" at her for her to lift her head up and see us. We were thus the complete gang to take the train, because Maryse had decided to take the plan to go to Toronto, since she suffers from travel sickness and the idea of being in a train for 5 hours and a half and hope to be in shape for the rest of the day had seemed a daunting ordeal to her.

Geneviève had just registered her suitcase, because it was too heavy (45 pounds, the maximum being 40 pounds) and she told us that there was nobody at the luggage registration. I decided to go weigh mine to know if it were allowed to be taken on board with the passengers, because by weighing it that morning with my bathroom scale at home, I noticed that it weighed 38.5 pounds. The clerk put it on the scale and it weighed 40.2 pounds. It would have been allowed to be taken on board with us without additional fees, but he strongly recommended that I registered it, because I wouldn't have to drag it along. I got tempted... I still told the clerk that I was confident that he would take good care of my suitcase, because it was very important to me. He smiled at me and he told me: "Don't worry, we treat them all as important suitcases... Otherwise, you wouldn't bring it, would you??" When I got back to Sandra and Geneviève, Sandra decided to do like the two of us too. What a relief not to have to drag a suitcase along except our light personal stuff like our purse and for me, the mini-laptop bag.

Sandra saw on the internet that she accessed with her smart phone that Jon had arrived to Toronto the previous day. He had been seen at a Toronto Raptors game and there were even pictures to confirm it! Nothing could be better than that to get excited for our trip; Jon was already waiting for us there!

We killed time the best way we could by telling anecdotes on the preparations for the trip and the latest morning adventures. About 15 minutes before boarding started, I decided to go to the restrooms one last time. (I went to the same restrooms as I had gone before a Bon Jovi show to brush my teeth in 2007 when I wore braces... What a coincidence!) When I got back, Sandra and Geneviève introduced me to Carole, a woman who was right behind us in the boarding waiting line. Carole was also coming to the fan club trip and she was going to meet Jon for the first time. Later, we learned that she is a Bon Jovi fan since the Slippery When Wet album and she is always quite close at shows she goes to. Thus, there is a good chance that we already saw her, but her face didn't ring any bells.

Right before boarding, Sandra and Geneviève made me notice that the man who was working for VIA Rail looked oddly like a Quebec actor and former boxer... By looking at his name tag on his suit, we were able to confirm that he was indeed Deano Clavet!

When we got into the train, we noticed that there were reserved face-to-face seats for groups of 3 or 4. We quickly sat down on one of these groups of seats and Carole sat down with us, obviously. Geneviève and I sat down to face the direction of the train, because I tend to get nauseous when my back is facing the direction of a vehicle and Geneviève didn't want to take any chances with her end of gastro; she still had to take Gravol caplets to avoid being nauseous...

We talked about this and that, relating ourselves of good times spent together, from the times that Maryse, Geneviève and Sandra spent together with other fans before I met them, but also of our families and our life in general. We stopped several times at train stations on our way, so the train wasn't going full speed for very long... When she went to the restrooms, Sandra noticed that there were probably other Bon Jovi fans on board our railroad car, because she saw that some women were looking at Bon Jovi stuff on their electronic tablet.

I think that the story that made me laugh the most is when Sandra told us when Maryse, Geneviève and she went to buy their fan club tickets for the Toronto shows in 2005, right after they bought their fan club tickets for the Montreal shows. This is the day when I had met them in Montreal. At that time, we had to go in person to the ticket office of the arena where the show would be held to buy our tickets. They had driven to Toronto after spending a great part of the night waiting at the Bell Centre, so they were quite tired. At some point, Maryse and Geneviève got the idea of drinking a Red Bull can together and it seems like they didn't even finish it... Sandra had the fear of her life when she opened her eyes (she was in the backseat relaxing quietly) and the Red Bull had started to kick in the other two ones who were then singing Bon Jovi songs at the top of their lungs in the car while changing the lyrics for their French translation!! Sandra said that she had never seen two women on such a high after drinking Red Bull!

Geneviève and I ate a sandwich bought on board for the modest sum of 6$. It was still tasty, as tasty as plane food... (I'm weird, but I like plane food and hospital food...) When I was eating, I became quite quiet and Sandra teased me by saying that my brain had shut itself at that moment and it was telling itself: "Ahhh... she's feeding me... I cannot do anything else, I'm too happy because she's feeding me..."

Geneviève made us laugh quite hard several times by catching what she called a "bubble" and by starting to sing Bon Jovi songs in French throughout the ride ("C'est ma vie, et c'est maintenant ou jamais")... In the railroad car, the train number and the car number (in our case, it was 5706: 57 for the train number and 06 for the car number) were written at several places on an electronic board like the one of an electronic clock. Geneviève kept on saying that time didn't pass by quickly, because it was always 57:06... I must still admit that it is true that it strangely looked like clock indicators in some places like train stations and airports...

I also bursted into laughter at some point when the conversation on the question surrounding Jon's underwear came up again. The one-million-dollar question is: does Jon wear underwear underneath his pants during a show? With the seamless and foldless tight pants that he wears which would give away the fact that we wears underwear otherwise, in addition to the stories that Sandra told us on the episode where Jon had ripped his pants in November 2007 in Montreal, we came to the conclusion that Jon probably doesn't wear anything underneath his pants... I know that it is a really weird conversation topic, but what can we say?! Geneviève then said, jokingly, that we could ask him during our pictures the following day: "Do you wear bobettes under your pants??!!" ("Bobettes" is Quebec's slang word for underwear.) We laughed so hard, I could just imagine Jon's face if Geneviève asked him that! ("What's a bobette??") It was a running gag up until the next day a few minutes before our pictures... Don't worry, we didn't ask him that!! The moment of a meeting with Jon is far too important to waste it telling him an idiocy!!

At some point, while Sandra was looking out the window, she said: "But what is it that we see fly like this? It just made a toc in the window!!" I was in front of her and I too, at the same moment, saw something quite small fly in the air. I told her that it was simply tree leaves, probably wet, which had just fell off the train that we had just passed on our way, but she was very skeptical by the sound the thing had made in the window. I stood up to my point by saying that at the speed we were going, it was normal that wet tree leaves could make noise by hitting a window. It was useless, Sandra didn't believe me. And we were still seeing similar things fly in the air. I then said: "Well, it's probably birds then, I see some farther away since earlier..." Sandra was as skeptical as for the tree leaves and very concerned about the fate of the bird that we had probably hit a little earlier. Geneviève then started to say that indeed, it could be birds that we were seeing through the window, because there were a lot of bird groups farther away, probably little sparrows or other birds... Sandra was really skeptical and at some point, a little later during the ride, while the train was going a little slower, she said: "Well yeah, they are tree leaves!!" We teased her a little bit about the fact that she hadn't believed me at first!!

A discussion occurred at some point about our cats; Geneviève had a lot of them at home when she was young, Sandra is a big fan of cats and my cat had made Geneviève, Maryse and Sandra quite laugh when they had come to my house to try out the belly-dancing costumes and Geneviève had cried out: "My god, it's not a cat, it's a cow!!" while seeing my cat Kimi in the house. It is true that it still weighs 16 pounds...

Geneviève wanted to use the free wireless network on board the train, but the connection didn't seem very reliable. While looking at the different networks available on her laptop, we saw a connection which was called "iPhone de Stéphane Tremblay" (Stéphane Tremblay's iPhone) and Geneviève said: "Well my Stéphane Tremblay, I will take your connection!" (or something like this) as a joke, until the man who was in one of the seats beside us told us: "I am Stéphane Tremblay!" We quite laughed and obviously, Geneviève apologized and told him that she was joking...

When the train got to Kingston, Sandra indicated to us that we were half way there and she started to sing "oooh, we're half way there..." It seems like it's the tradition and the thing to do when getting to Kingston to go to a Bon Jovi show in Toronto from Montreal!

Geneviève also told us the story when, a few weeks ago, Maryse had looked for the Bell Centre seating chart and she had made a search in Google with the keywords "Bon Jovi Bell Center seating chart section 111". She was very surprised when Google displayed the results; she noticed that the picture of her and Maryse that I had taken in 2005 at the Bell Centre after the show when I had seen that they were the authors of the banner "Stay just a little bit longer"! This picture is on my personal website and Google indexed it with these keywords!! Moreover, it seems like the picture was one of the first search results!

Anyway, we finally arrived to Toronto at 3h38pm, to the great displeasure of Sandra who said that the train was late by 3 minutes on the planned arrival time of 3h35pm... Before the train stopped, Geneviève saw an Air Canada plane go down on our left and she said: "I'm sure that it's Maryse's flight, she was landing at the airport near here at 3h35pm!" Anyway, I was starting to be anxious to get out, because spending 5 hours and a half sitting down on an almost padless seat and with my buttocks which don't have a lot of "padding" from the beginning is not something that is very pleasant... We went down in the train station to get our registered luggage and we waited quite long in front of the conveyor belt which was still not moving. At some point, Geneviève suggested to Sandra (or the other way around??) to go push on the orange button which was on the wall near the conveyor belt. Sandra didn't want to, but she still started looking at the button. Almost at the same time, the orange light above the button turned on and the conveyor belt started moving! Geneviève said that Sandra's mind had made the light turn on and she congratulated her for the power of her mind!!

My suitcase and Sandra's suitcase didn't take long to appear on the conveyor belt. I was relieved when I saw mine, because I have never liked going somewhere without my luggage by fear of losing it... Geneviève waited really long before seeing hers, at the point where she asked herself if she would need to go shopping before the evening to buy the essential stuff that she needed! Carole had only two bags with her that were quite small and she had not registered them.

We then headed towards Union Station where we quite wondered how to go to the hotel from the station. A woman who was passing by quite saw that we were very perplexed with our suitcases, so she asked us where we were going. She indicated us the way to take and we left the station. There was a lot of construction work around the station and we had to go up and down a few temporary staircases with our suitcases on wheels... Let's say that we couldn't wait to get to the real street! We passed in front of the Air Canada Centre and we saw a building on which "Westin" was written a little farther, so we knew that we were going in the right direction! The woman in the station had told us that it was a 15-minute walk, and it took us pretty much that time to get to the hotel with all the streets to cross and the traffic lights. When we arrived at the hotel lobby, we saw that there were several steps to climb up. We asked ourselves if the hotel received a lot of physically impaired people, because it was not really convenient with our suitcases; we dared imagine what it should be like for someone in a wheelchair!!

We got inside the hotel after all these steps and unlike what the other three ones thought, I told them that the Runaway Tours staff would not be the ones to assign the rooms, but the clerks at the front desk instead, like a normal check-in at the hotel. A clerk asked us if we were part of the fan club trip and by saying yes, she told us that it would not be very long. Sandra asked her if it were possible to get rooms close to one another. The clerk told us to ask it to the clerk who would process our check-in, while specifying that the chances of being close to one another would be higher if we weren't too picky on the type of bed we wanted in our room (2 full beds, one queen-sized bed or one king-sized bed).

When a clerk got available, Sandra stepped forward first and she immediately said to the clerk, who was super nice by the way, that we wanted to have rooms close to each other and that we were five. Maryse had not arrived yet, but according to a text message that Geneviève had received a few minutes before, she was in the shuttle from the airport towards the hotel. He told us that he would do his best to accommodate us, while keeping in mind that the hotel was full that night. While verifying his room availabilities, he told us that the best he could do was three rooms on one floor and other two rooms on a floor a little higher. We thus accepted this deal. Sandra received her room keys and I headed towards the same clerk afterwards. When the clerk asked me if a king-sized bed were fine with me, I made a big smile and I said: "Yes!" I was happy, because the last time, in Las Vegas, Martin and I had had a room with two full beds! When I got my room keys, I stepped aside to let Carole move forward. She had asked us to translate in French the clerk's instructions, because she was afraid of not understanding him. Sandra was the one who translated everything to her, because she is more used than me to translate with her spouse who doesn't speak English neither. Finally, the three of us all got rooms on the same floor; Carole and I were direct neighbors and Sandra was a few rooms away from ours.

Right before Geneviève stepped forward to check in, I saw Maryse who had just gotten in the hotel, so I told the gang that Maryse was there. We then waved at her to let her know that we were there and she moved quickly towards us. Geneviève and Maryse got rooms on the 21st floor, four floors higher than ours, but in the same hotel wing, at least. We thus went up to our rooms to drop off our luggage before going down to check in to the fan club trip with Runaway Tours. When I got into my room on the 17th floor, I immediately noticed that I had an unobstructed view on Lake Ontario and the little islands nearby.

We went into a room right beside the check-in front desk where we had gone at first, before I told the others that the room check-in was not with Runaway Tours. Lou is the one who handed out our VIP badges and our show tickets, after asking us to sign on a sheet beside our name and after showing him an ID card. I was so distracted that I handed him my credit card at first! When I noticed it, I told him: "Oops, sorry, I gave you my credit card! Hold on!" while taking back my card and pulling out my driver's license. He found it funny, while telling me that he was wondering why I had handed out my credit card! Sandra already had her things, but she started talking to Lou after I got mine. He asked us where we were from and when she said that we were from Montreal, he told her that he really liked Montreal and that he had gone there for a special event against cancer, I don't remember what it was and when anymore. When Sandra learned that he was from New Jersey, she started telling him that she was going there often during her vacations and she chatted with him during a few more minutes.

Sandra and I quickly verified that our two envelopes of tickets contained tickets that were together for both shows, because we had asked to be seated together when we had sent our registration forms for the trip. I was relieved to see that it was the case for both nights! We also learned that we were going to be in the sixth row on the floor right in the middle for the first show and in the first row of section 119 in the bleachers for the second show. By looking at a seating chart later on in the evening, I saw that section 119 was the second section from the stage in the bleachers. But we didn't care much, because Sandra and I didn't need tickets for the second show, by having bought pit tickets separately!

When I got into the room, I saw that Rob was seated at the end of the table on my left, but he was talking to people who probably wanted to register for the lipsync contest that Runaway Tours had organized for the welcome party. Maryse wanted to know who Rob was among all the men in the room and I pointed at him to let her know who he was. Immediately after, I saw Joe arrive beside Lou to help him out. I waved at him, because I had then gotten away from the table and I told him: "Hi Rob!!" He looked at me with a puzzled face by making a little no sign with his head... I then realized that I had completely made a mistake with his name! Oops!! While heading towards the table, I gave him a big smile, and I told him: "I'm so sorry, Joe, I mixed up your names!!" while laughing. I had just told Maryse where Rob was, I still had his name in my head when I saw Joe! Double oops! I told him: "Do you remember me? I was in Las Vegas in April..." He seemed to remember me, but maybe he also pretended not to disappoint me, I don't know. I told him that I had gone with my husband in Las Vegas and that now, I had brought my tour girlfriends with me. I pointed out that I had convinced them to come after they learned about what kind of trip I had had in Las Vegas. He seemed happy that I had convinced other fans to go on a fan club trip. While looking at our VIP badges, we noticed that people who had a last name starting by the letters closer to the beginning of the alphabet had a smaller number than the other ones. We concluded that the numbers on the badges were determined in alphabetical order. Unlike in Las Vegas, our names were written on the badges, as well as the type of room that we had ("single" or "double") to better control people for the pictures, I imagine...

We then all went back up to our rooms to go drop off our things before going for dinner and Carole told us that she was going to get some rest a little, because she had gotten up at 2ham to take the train from her house to Drummondville to then take the train with us from Montreal... A few minutes later, we all went down to the hotel lobby to go eat (except Carole who was simply going to get herself a little something to eat before going to bed).

We left the hotel and we started walking to find a restaurant, after asking a concierge for a map of the surroundings to find ourselves. We went past the Air Canada Centre at some point and we decided to turn around, because we weren't seeing a lot of interesting restaurants... We thus came back to the street where the hotel was and we headed towards where there seemed to have restaurants according to a big information sign which was just around the corner from the hotel. A little farther, there was another big sign and we saw that we were a few steps away from Quiznos, so we decided to go there.

Geneviève, Maryse and I ordered a Carbonara sandwich and Sandra requested a vegetarian sandwich to be prepared for her. We ate in the restaurant at a small table with bar-style stools. We started telling Maryse about what had happened in the train and at some point, I told Maryse that Geneviève had found what the hamster in my head looks like. We all have a hamster that runs in our head and that causes us a lot of worries when it loses control, no?! Maryse's one is called Ti-pit and it gets quite excited these days, by telling her to buy tickets in the pit including a VIP package for the first show through Ticketmaster for the modest sum of 1300$ per ticket, among others... Anyway, Geneviève started saying that indeed, my Ti-pit was a nerd hamster with thick and big glasses, prominent incisors and a note pad to write everything that occurs during the preparations for a show and during the show. Maryse found it so funny, because indeed, nobody from my group of girls understands how I can remember all little details told in my show reviews. My hamster surely runs like crazy to note everything that happens!! I even said as a joke that my Ti-pit still has its prominent front teeth, because it didn't have the chance of getting the dental treatments that I underwent a few years ago... I hope that the Quiznos staff didn't speak French, because they should have wondered what we were talking about!! When Geneviève got up to go to the restrooms, she told me as a joke that Ti-pit could note the current time to mention it in my review. Ti-pit's attention was called, it noted it! So, I say it officially; Geneviève went to the restrooms at 6h20pm that evening! For those who still wonder how I do it, I could not tell, but it is true that I took out in a few rare occasions my cellular phone in the last years to note a few words to remind me of memorable events during the shows. Also, by taking thousands of pictures and making a dozen videos at least during each show, it helps me remember details enormously. For the rest, Ti-pit doesn't get any rest during the shows and notes everything that happens or almost! At the speed my thoughts go through my head during a show, it is normal that it cannot write everything, because I think that it would have suffered from a nervous depression several times!!

Geneviève, Maryse and I returned to the hotel under the rain, while Sandra made a detour to go get herself coffee at Tim Hortons which was a few steps away from Quiznos, on the other side of the street. Isabelle S. had sent me a text message while we were eating our dinner and she came to see me with Rosy in my room when I got back to the hotel. It was the first time that I was talking to Rosy face to face. Apart from a few words when we met in a movie theater, a brief hello at the Bell Centre in February 2013 and a few phone calls, Isabelle S. and I had never had a face-to-face conversation. We talked about their trip, about the steep price of the hotel parking that Runaway Tours had not succeeded in negotiating with the cost of the packages (the parking with valet cost 45$ per night, while the parking without valet a block away from the hotel cost 35$ per night; I had paid my one-way train ticket to Toronto 45$ and 45$ for a one-way ticket to Montreal...) and about several other things. At some point, Sandra also came to my room to chat. She was seeing Isabelle S. and Rosy for the first time. The welcome party started at 9hpm, so at around 8hpm, all the girls went back to their room (Rosy was in the penthouse, Isabelle S. was a few floors lower than Rosy) to allow ourselves to get ready.

I dressed up as "pretty woman" with a red dress and a few sparkling jewels. I was not wearing a belly-dancing costume, because I had feared getting Geneviève's gastro who was barely recovering from it that day (she had brought the costumes from her house)... I straightened my hair correctly, I put on my contact lenses and I put on makeup in a record time for me! I even had enough time to continue my review to free up space in Ti-pit's note pad a little before the rest of the evening. I was still already quite tired and I was wondering how I would do to party for very long...

We had told Maryse and Geneviève that we would meet at around 9h15pm to go down to the welcome party. At some point while I was at the computer, I heard Geneviève say in the hallway: "Sandra?!" I then went out of my room to tell them where we were, because they hadn't noted our room numbers, only the floor number instead. While I was about to go meet with Sandra in her room, one of the two went to knock on Sandra's room door. Maryse was wearing her purple belly-dancing costume and Geneviève was wearing her black costume identical to Maryse's. They were really beautiful wearing that! They were wearing shawls to hide their costume a little bit, because their belly was still revealed and they were a little shy to cross the lobby and get to the party which was on the second floor of the hotel, above the lobby. Sandra didn't disguise herself and when we knocked on Carole's door after having all gotten out of Sandra's room, we concluded that she had decided not to wear the costume that she had bound neither, because she was dressed normally.

We arrived quite quickly at the welcome party and Lou, disguised as Santa Claus, handed us out two tickets for free drinks. We went into the room and there were still several people already there, the most part wearing a costume. We saw where the bar was right beside the entrance, so we decided to go get in line for our first drink of the evening. When I turned around, I saw Afsha, my friend from Toronto, who was headed towards me. She hadn't seen me, but when I waved at her, she immediately recognized me and she said: "Ohhh, hi!! How are you??" while giving me a hug. I didn't even know that she was going on the trip; we hadn't talked about it since the trip was announced! I was really happy to see her and it seemed to be the same for her! She asked me where Martin was and I answered that he wasn't there and that time, I was going on a girls trip while pointing at the 3 others who were already waiting at the bar. She also introduced me to her friend Gayle with whom she goes to Bon Jovi shows and despite her disguise and her makeup, I recognized her by the picture that I had seen of Afsha and her with Jon in February when they had gone on the fan club trip in Toronto.

Anyway, when I arrived in front of the barman, I simply asked him for a mix of cranberry juice and sparkling water. Me and alcohol, I needed to pay attention not to get tired even faster and become drunk after only a few sips! I then decided not to drink anything with alcohol.

When we walked towards the dance floor, we saw that there were Jon's things put in auction and a guitar autographed by every band member, including Richie! We would learn a little later during the evening that it was the last guitar autographed by all the band members... I saw that Darin was disguised as a pope, that Rob was disguised as a photographer, Joe seemed to be as a priest or another character dressed in black and another staff member, who I didn't recognize from Las Vegas, was wearing a zebra or Alakazoo costume, it all depends on where we are from and our child memories of Passe-Partout! The official photographer of the evening, a member of the Runaway Tours staff, came to take a picture of us at some point. I think that it will be a very nice memory! I also told myself how much he looked like one of our Canadian astronauts! The resemblance was almost scary!

I also saw Isabelle S. and Rosy at the beginning of the evening. Isabelle S. was disguised as a woman from the Roaring Twenties with a dress from the 1920s and gloves up to her elbows and Rosy dressed up as a devil. At first, we were on the dance floor, but we weren't really dancing, we were slightly shifting from foot to foot. The music that was playing wasn't Bon Jovi music neither, it didn't help us get in the mood. I wanted to go have my picture taken with at least Rob during the evening to immortalize my presence at fan club trips, because I have no pictures taken with the Runaway Tours staff in Las Vegas. Since I don't know what the future holds, I cannot say if I will go on other trips like this one! However, Rob was always busy with someone or was at the sound console, because he was the DJ of the evening as well!

Shortly after, I think that Darin was the one to announce that David Bergman, Bon Jovi's official photographer, arrived to join us while pointing at him at the room entrance. He also mentioned that Rob was disguised as David Bergman! He took the opportunity, since he had the microphone in his hands, to describe how the next day would unfold a little bit for our picture with Jon. He told us that we had to be at gate 6 of the Air Canada Centre to go to the pre-show party and we had to be there before 3h20pm, because after that, they would not let us in anymore. He said that they would walk towards the Air Canada Centre from the hotel at around 2h45pm with those who wanted to follow them. He then said pretty much the same rules as in Las Vegas by asking us not to kiss Jon nor jump on him to give him a hug, because it wouldn't be nice if Jon got sick ("we wouldn't want Jon to get sick, would we?") and he doesn't like his experience, because at some point, if fans don't follow these simple rules, Jon could want to go back to group pictures without allowing for individual pictures. He also specified to us that it wasn't a meet and greet, that we couldn't start talking to Jon, that we couldn't have anything in our hands for the picture, that we had to put down our personal stuff away from Jon during the picture, etc. His speech looked strangely like the one I had heard in Las Vegas. Rob took the microphone to remind people to look at him and not Jon during the pictures, that he would take 3 pictures and he would put the best two pictures on Facebook and on Runaway Tours' website afterwards, the next Tuesday at the latest. He reminded us that we had all the rights on the pictures and no copyright would be necessary to do anything with the pictures.

Darin took the microphone again to tell us that we would be able to go get the tour program autographed by Jon on Saturday (before the second show) at around 3hpm and he announced to us that we would also receive David Bergman's official book containing his best Bon Jovi tour pictures. I was so happy when I learned that! We were several people to scream and tell our joy! I think that I wouldn't have reacted a lot more vividly if he had announced to me that we would have a third show in Toronto!

When I saw that David was heading towards Rob and that he was talking either to Darin or to Joe, I don't remember anymore, I went to ask Rob if it were possible to get a picture with him and David. He immediately accepted, so I went to see Sandra for her to come take the picture, since she is used to my camera (she has the same one). I then came back near Rob, but I could see that Sandra wasn't coming. I hadn't seen that Darin had gone to see Geneviève to give her compliments on her belly-dancer disguise and Sandra had taken my camera to take a picture of Geneviève and Darin. When I went to see what Sandra was doing, she asked me why she couldn't use the flash. I then changed the mode of the camera to be able to use the flash and instinctively, I put myself beside Darin for the picture. I think that he didn't really want me in the picture, but well, it was still my camera, so I interposed myself! Sandra took another picture afterwards of Darin and Geneviève alone.

Sandra then followed me so we could join Rob and when he saw me, he waved at David, who was disguised as a sailor with a sailor cap, a pipe and a robe, to let him know that I wanted to have a picture with the two of them. David then made me a nice smile and he said: "Sure, come here... I just hope that you will be able to know which one is the real me!" while laughing and the both of them got beside me on each side for the picture. David seemed to me like a very simple man who is very easy to approach. I thanked the both of them by saying that it meant a lot to me to have my picture taken with them, since I take a lot of pictures...

At some point, I saw Isabelle S. and Rosy again; they had gone to sit down while we were still discussing and shifting from foot to foot to the sound of music (Bon Jovi songs were starting to play for that matter). Rob was inviting everyone to come dancing, but the dance floor was not popular at all! Isabelle S. told me that at her table, there was a woman called Chantale Tardif and when she said that, I immediately knew why she was talking to me about her. Chantale had contacted me through my personal website to tell me that she was coming to the trip alone. I then asked Isabelle S. to introduce me to her. We headed towards her table and I was able to talk to her for a few minutes. As soon as she saw me come with Isabelle S., her face lit up, because she recognized me from my pictures on my site! She seems very nice and I was happy to meet her. The women at the table asked me if I could take pictures of them, so I took a few with their cameras. I asked one of the women to take a picture with Isabelle S. and Rosy with my camera. Afterwards, I got back near Geneviève, Maryse, Sandra and Carole, because it was really hot where the tables were located and we had a cooler draft that was going across the dance floor which was in front of the room door.

When I got back near the girls, I don't quite know why, but we started dancing, or they were maybe even dancing before I arrived. We danced and danced, to a point when sometimes, we were the only ones dancing on the dance floor. Isabelle S. and Rosy joined us at some point, but dancing wasn't really popular at all in the room! We were getting almost as excited as when we are at a Bon Jovi show, jumping up and down and doing the same gestures as Jon during some songs. The advantage was that we had a lot more room on the dance floor than at a show where we are all squeezed one against the others. I completely couldn't care less about what other people were thinking about us, we were having so much fun and that was the important thing! I had a lot of tensions to release with the stress from the previous weeks. It was the time to do it and what is better than doing it during a party of a Bon Jovi fan club trip, with my friends who are as crazy as me about the band?! Geneviève showed her great talents of belly-dancer at some point, it was quite impressive to see her dance on the dance floor! Darin even came to venerate her while we were still dancing! And for the girls who thought that imitating Geneviève's gestures by trying to belly-dance to laugh at her, I feel so sorry for you, because you must not have an interesting life to try to drag others down to try to feel better about yourselves! Oh yes, we saw everything that you did and it is not sane to be as jealous about others!

I was always losing the tip of my shoe heels while dancing. I had lost one of the tips in Sandra's room before going down and she had found it while going up to her room during the evening. She had brought it back to me, to my great joy, because I hadn't noticed that I was missing the tip of a heel, but I had a weird sensation each time I was putting this foot down on the ground! I had to be careful while dancing, because both tips wouldn't stop falling off!

Runaway Tours did the lipsync contest which was a little weird... Rob was playing Bon Jovi music (the song that people had previously chosen) and they were simply singing with a fake microphone. But if I had known what people were getting at the end, I would have maybe considered participating... Rob was giving away one of Jon's guitar strings, I don't quite know if it were as a bracelet or a necklace, but still, it was one of Jon's guitar strings!

The only time when people really started dancing is at the beginning of We Weren't Born To Follow. A few people started doing the train dance and most of the room got on board. Not being big fans of the train dance, we stepped back to free up the dance floor to all the others who weren't dancing since the beginning of the evening and when their little trip finished, we stepped forward again on the dance floor.

The Runaway Tours staff started the auction to sell articles belonging to Jon at around 11h30pm. If I remember well, we were then dancing on One Wild Night when Darin took the microphone and when Rob only turned down the volume of the music instead of stopping it. We continued dancing and Darin said, while seeing that we weren't stopping: "And there they are still dancing!" with a little laugh. Rob stopped the music shortly after to give way to the auction. I found it was long before all articles got sold and I found a little ridiculous the fact that some people paid so much money to have an article that Jon supposedly wore and which was autographed by him. Just to give you an idea, a very ordinary t-shirt which costs maybe 20$ got sold for several hundreds of dollars...

Anyway, the auction killed a little the momentum that the music had created, but still, when the music got back, we continued dancing. At some point, Always started playing if I remember well and the four of us took each other by the shoulders and we started dancing a ballad by saying loud: "They will not get to us, we will still continue to dance!!" However, we didn't dance the whole song like this, we savored the rest of the song by singing it and by softly shifting from foot to foot. Geneviève even went to the table where Rob had put the fake microphone for the lipsync contest to see if we could use it to sing during the song, but she returned empty handed. Too bad, I'm sure that we would have had even more fun!

Isabelle S. and Rosy left at around 11h45pm, they seemed tired of their day. It is true that they drove to Toronto, still a little more stressful than taking the plane or train and let themselves get driven!

The goal of the Halloween party was of course to get disguised and there was a price to win for the nicest costume. The Runaway Tours staff recruited the nicest costumes during the evening and they told the finalists to come near the table where Rob was at some point. Finally, a man disguised as Freddy won, but there were also very nice costumes among the finalists. I found it weird that the two "bunnies" didn't win, with the bunch of guys to determine the nicest costume... Indeed, two women arrived dressed with a black bustier that was so short that it looked like a strapless bathing suit with bunny ears, a white ball tail and spike heels. Let's say that they dragged attention to them!

At around midnight, Matt Bongiovi, Jon's brother, entered the room; Sandra saw him come in right away. Several people got around him, because when he arrives at a party, usually, people go see him to talk to him and take pictures with him. Sandra made me notice that he seemed to have lost weight. Indeed, his face was less fat than what I already saw. We continued dancing and at some point when almost everyone in the room who knew who Matt was were done going to see him, he was alone near Rob and Darin. Sandra then asked me if I wanted to go have my picture taken with Matt. Obviously, I accepted, so we headed towards him. Sandra talked to him first by asking him up front if he accepted having his picture taken with us. He didn't hesitate to say yes. Sandra stepped towards him and I took a picture. Then, I gave the camera to Sandra and I got close to Matt in turn. I was surprised by Matt's reaction. The first time I had had my picture taken with him in March 2010 at the Bell Centre, he stayed serious and he hadn't put his hand or his arm behind me. However, this time, he made me a nice smile while telling me: "Come here" and he took my right shoulder with his hand and he gently pulled me towards him so I would be as close to him as possible. I was then able to press the side of my whole body against him and I put my left hand in the middle of his back. It felt really weird to feel Jon's brother's hand on my shoulder!

After the picture, I thanked him and he rubbed my shoulder a little while telling me that it was his pleasure. He was really relaxed and in a good mood. I also noticed his Slippery When Wet necklace that he was proudly wearing. I already talked about it, but this necklace is given by Jon to all tour crew members who have done at least two full tours with the band. We can agree that Jon's brother, being his show bodyguard, fully deserves his necklace! Sandra then asked him how his back was, because he got a surgery a few months ago already. He said: "Oh, much better, thanks!" with a big smile. She also told him that she thought he had lost weight and he said: "Actually, that's a funny story, I gained weight, but it doesn't show, so it's even better I guess!" while smiling again. I then said: "So you're back on Twitter?" because I learned the previous day that Matt had closed his Twitter account following the flow of tweets from people who just wanted to harass him about Richie or tour dates. Matt was keeping us informed about several dates and special events; it was fun to have a privileged access, but at the same time, several people were abusing Matt's kindness and he got tired of it and had decided to close his account. We had learned a little earlier during the week that he had created another Twitter account. Anyway, he told me: "Yeah, well, we'll see how long it lasts..." while smiling, because he knows very well that ill-intentioned people will find him again soon!! And he continued: "I don't like ignorants... but well, what can you do?!" We said goodbye and we got back to our friends who were still on the dance floor. The music that was playing was then getting dull by the minute and there were about 15-20 minutes left before the end of the party that was ending at 1ham. We thus decided to go back up to our rooms. I got to mine with the feeling of having done a lot of things during the day and strangely, I was not as tired as I thought. I got to bed at 2ham with a light head and a bit of excitement for the following day and for my second meeting with Jon.

Here are a few pictures of our evening during the welcome party:

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)
Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

We were the only events of the day in the hotel!

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

The group of girls dancing

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

Carole, Geneviève, Maryse, Marie-Hélène Cyr and Sandra

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

Geneviève, Darin and Marie-Hélène Cyr

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

Rob, Marie-Hélène Cyr and David Bergman

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

Marie-Hélène Cyr, Isabelle S. and Rosy

Welcome party of the fan club trip at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (October 31, 2013)

Marie-Hélène Cyr and Matt Bongiovi

Day 1 - Dare going through with my dreams

Venue: Air Canada Centre
Ticket: Floor, Row 6, Seat 21
Pictures: Available
Videos: Available

On November 1, I woke up at the same time as I usually get up during the week, that is 5h15am. I was able to go back to sleep, but I often woke up afterwards. At around 8h15am, I was not able to go back to sleep, but I stayed in bed until 9ham. We can say that I had understood that I could allow myself to live the nice life in my hotel room in which I was alone: no husband, no child! There was only me, my pajamas, my bed and my laptop... I thus decided to take it easy while continuing to write my review, comfortably installed in my bed with all available pillows... The joy of taking my time! I cannot tell how happy I was also to see that it was sunny outside when I opened the curtains! The forecast during the previous days had called for rain for this so important day! While looking at the Weather Network application on my iPhone, I saw that the forecast called for no rain anymore for the day, except at the end of the evening, however, the wind was blowing strong! I think that I liked wind better than rain!

I was a little sore from the previous day... I think that I got a little too excited by dancing and making gestures with my arms during the welcome party... I was expecting it, but well, at least I was in shape before leaving for the trip, because otherwise, I think that I would have had a hard time moving that morning! The whole upper part of my body was hurting, even my elbows! Like Geneviève said a little later during the trip, we seemed to have lacked elbow oil (her elbows were also hurting)! I drank a lot of water after getting up to ensure that I would be in shape for the rest of the day. I sent a text message to Sandra, Maryse and Geneviève to ask them if we were going to get lunch at some point, because I was starting to get stressed out a little by not knowing what we would do for lunch. Sandra wrote to me at 11h45am to tell me that she had just woken up and she would simply go get herself a bagel at Tim Hortons. Since the other two ones still weren't answering (and fortunately, I didn't wait for their response, because they saw my text message only in late afternoon!), I decided to contact Isabelle S. to know what she and Rosy were doing for lunch. She called me immediately to my room when she saw my text message to tell me that they had eaten a big breakfast and they would eat raw vegetables and granola bars for lunch, because they were quite nervous and they didn't want to eat too much. In the meantime, I had gotten dressed and I was now ready to go outside, so I decided to go get myself a subway at Quiznos. I knew where it was and I didn't have to eat a subway identical to the one from the previous day!

When I set foot outside and when I arrived at the first corner where we could see the water of Lake Ontario farther away, I noticed quite fast that the wind was blowing very strong! I hadn't brought my hair dryer from home, being confident that the one in my hotel room would dry my hair. I told myself at that moment that if my dryer ever weren't strong enough to dry my hair correctly, I just had to go outside near the water with my round hairbrush and in a few minutes, my hair would be dry! Oh yes, Ti-pit had a lot of ideas that morning!! The girls found my idea very funny when I told them about it later during the day...

I came back to my room at around 12h15pm with a club sandwich subway in my hands. It was so good that I ate it up! Then, the process of preparing myself for a Bon Jovi show, and mostly for my second picture with Jon, started. Everything went quite well and within the delays that I had planned: showering, hair drying (no, I didn't have to go outside in the wind...), straightening of hair, getting dressed, teeth brushing, putting my contact lenses on, putting makeup on, preparation of my two purses for the show... I thought that it would take me an hour and a half to get ready and at the end, I lost time by going at the computer, so finally, it took me nearly two hours.

After praying the god of hair and thinking about my hairdresser while I was fixing my hair, I noticed at the end that my hair was perfect once again! I also thought that I had quite a style with the clothes and accessories that the sales assistant at Le Château had advised me to buy. I was wearing tight black pants, mid-leg nylon stockings (that I had a hard time putting on, because I put them on after putting my pants on and I had to think about tricks to put on these stockings with tight pants!), a white tank top one size smaller than the one I usually wear underneath my tank top on which I had written on the front "Jon I'd like a dance I listened to Bed Of Roses 3876X in 1 year" and on the back "Bon Jovi fan since 1993". It was almost identical to the ones made in February 2013, except for both sentences on the front that I had reversed to allow Jon to read my request before the rest of the message during the photo op. I had had the idea of wearing this kind of tank top on which a message was written after learning that we could have nothing in our hands during the photo op and that the number of seconds with Jon was very limited. I had told myself that I would still pass on the message like this and I would risk drawing his attention. But since I didn't necessarily want to give the idea of doing that to other people, because after all, the pictures would end up being posted on the internet viewed by everyone, I had asked the sales assistant at Le Château to advise me on what I could put on top of my tank top, but which would be very easy to remove when I would arrive in front of Jon and very easy to put back on for the picture so the message would not be shown too much. She had then advised me to simply wear a scarf that I could take away and which I could use to hide the message. To hide the back of the tank top, she had advised me to buy a burgundy cardigan, the trendy color of the fall. My scarf was black, mustard and burgundy and I was also wearing bracelets in the same tints. Anyway, when I finished getting dressed, I thought about my sales assistant, because she was dead on with everything she had advised me to buy, because I thought that I had a very nice style!

The Runaway Tours staff had told us that they would leave the hotel at around 2h45pm to go to the Air Canada Centre where the pre-show party would be held at The Crowne Corner. Isabelle S. had told me earlier during the day when we had talked over the phone that she and Rosy would be in the hotel lobby for 2h30pm, because they thought that several people would take a taxi to get there and that we would risk waiting a while for a taxi if everybody did that. We had decided to take a taxi to get to the Air Canada Centre, because the wind was blowing strong and we didn't want to get there all uncombed! I thus went to Sandra's room at around 2h25pm to know if she were ready. Since she had slept in and she had gotten up later than she had planned, she was running like crazy to be ready on time. A few minutes later, Geneviève knocked on the door and when I opened it, she signaled Maryse not to go knock on mine, because I was already there. Maryse and Geneviève were also wearing tops with burgundy tints; it was funny to see us three with the same color, mostly that Geneviève told us that hers was coming from Le Château outlet (what a coincidence)! A little intrigued, Maryse asked me what was written on my tank top, so I showed it to them. I had still not told them what I would do and what I would say to Jon for my second picture with him... I wanted to keep the surprise the longest possible!

Sandra was ready at 2h30pm exactly from the clock in her room! We got out of Sandra's room and we headed towards Carole's room door while asking ourselves if she had already left or not. When we said that, she opened her door, as if she had heard us (that's probably what happened in fact). We went down and we noticed that there were quite a few people in the lobby. The Runaway Tours staff was also there and I decided to go ask one of the gang which gate of the Air Canada Centre we had to go to, because they had told us the previous day that it was gate 6 and on the itinerary that they had sent about one month before the trip, gate 5 was written instead... Joe told me that it was gate 6 and I headed towards the girls to notice that Sandra was asking the same thing to Darin... Oh well... Darin simply told Sandra that anyway, we just had to follow them, because they were leaving right away with the group that was already there. This is when I said that we would take a taxi, because it was too windy. Sandra asked a taxi at the entrance, while the rest of the group was leaving by foot. Geneviève and Maryse finally decided to follow the group and go there by foot. Sandra, Carole and I got into the first taxi that arrived and we left. The taxi driver thought it was a little strange that we were going two blocks away by taxi, but well... He dropped us off at gate 3, because gate 6 was on a street where construction work was underway and he had told us that anyway, from there, we were going to be able to find our way very easily. It cost us 5.75$ divided in three! Let's say that it didn't ruin us! When we got out, I saw Isabelle S. and Rosy get out of the taxi that was just in front of us and still, I hadn't seen that they got on a taxi at the hotel!

We arrived at the Air Canada Centre before the gang who was on foot and when we saw the group cross the street, we walked towards them to join them and go in at the same time. I thought that we would go in immediately, but they made us wait long minutes in the full wind... Grrr... I was holding my hair, several women had transparent hats against the rain on their hair to keep them combed... Let's say that I couldn't wait to go in! Someone was verifying that we all had our VIP badge around our neck before letting us in and another person told us that we had to open our purses and take out our show ticket when entering before going farther. I don't know who was verifying the purses, but I saw nobody ask me to check out mine! We waited a while before going up where the party was, because there were two elevators of normal size and we were 200 who wanted to go up at once!! We waited our turn... Anyway, we were all going to the same place for a few hours. We completely lost Maryse and Geneviève in the crowd, but we also knew that we would get together again at some point! Joe was distributing tickets for free drinks while marking our VIP badge to indicate that we already had the tickets.

We went up shortly after, after getting our tickets scanned before going up to the third floor. When we arrived, we immediately saw Maryse and Geneviève who were waving at us with their arms; they were sitting at a table near the entrance. We went to join them and Isabelle S. and Rosy also followed us. Maryse and Geneviève went to get drinks. Finally, I had asked Geneviève to get me sparkling water, but there wasn't any! Not a big deal, I had my bottle of water for the show in my purse and I didn't want to drink alcohol to stay sober in front of Jon... Isabelle S. and Rosy each went to get a glass of white wine.

Rosy was starting to be very nervous, since our wait inside the Air Canada Centre in fact. She was often saying that she was nauseous and she was jokingly telling Sandra to give her her purse just in case she needed to throw up in it... It was really very funny, Rosy was saying: "Sandra, hand me your purse!" Geneviève was also quite nervous and as she said it so well, she lets out her stress by saying stupidities and by laughing for nothing and the more she is nervous, the more she talks! We quickly saw what she meant... She was a real talking and joking mill, one stupidity after another. I sincerely hope that people around us didn't speak French too much, because they must have wondered what kind of crazy girls we were to laugh like this!

For that matter, I triggered a joke on myself when I turned to Maryse, Geneviève and Sandra to say to them that I still didn't know why they had accepted to talk to me in Montreal in 2005 when we were waiting for our fan club tickets and I had met them. Since I was quite shy, since my teeth were crooked, I still wonder to this day what pushed them to talk to me! Maryse said that they felt sorry for me all alone in my corner, Sandra added that I had seemed clean with a good hygiene, etc. Anyway, they made all the other ones laugh with these good jokes... I'm used to being someone's punching bag, let's say that it was just very funny! Let's say that laughter was so frequent in our little gang that I noticed at some point that my abdominal muscles hurt because I was laughing!

Rob talked to the crowd shortly after arriving to remind us that we shouldn't jump on Jon, nor kiss him nor give him a hug during the pictures and that we still had the right to say a few words, like "Hi, how are you? I love your work.", etc. He also told us that we couldn't go behind the black curtain that was behind him at that moment, because otherwise, we would be escorted out and we couldn't have our picture with Jon. I imagine that the curtain was leading to the inside of the show room and that we could have seen the band or something else... I came back to the table with a light heart, just because Rob had said that we could say a few words to Jon before our picture. The previous evening, he had been stricter than that and as Maryse made us notice, we were a little under the impression with the previous evening's instructions that we had to be silent and walk sideways like crabs to arrive beside Jon for the picture to ensure that we didn't look at Jon!

At some point during the party, Sandra mentioned to us that someone had told her that we all had a nice accent and that it was really pleasant to hear us speak French... Hum... We were in Canada, it was normal to hear people speak French; it's still the second official language of the country!

The Runaway Tours photographer came to take pictures of the guests and he took one of all our gang that I really like a lot (like Maryse mentioned afterwards on Facebook, we were a bunch of all dolled-up women):

Bon Jovi pre-show party in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Isabelle S., Rosy, Marie-Hélène Cyr, Maryse, Sandra, Geneviève and Carole

Isabelle S. and Rosy went to get something to eat, because we had access to a buffet. They ate and afterwards, I decided to go get food, because it looked good. I ran into Afsha who was waiting at the bar, probably for a drink. She admitted to me that she was more nervous than the first time that she had had her picture taken with Jon in February 2013. Strangely, on my side, I wasn't that nervous! I seemed calm and I was! She also told me that her French was improving and I offered her my services if she ever needed me for questions in French!

Anyway, the buffet included green salad with dressing on the side, cooked vegetables including carrots and pieces of broccoli, penne with chicken in an Alfredo sauce or some cheese sauce (I'm honestly not expert enough to know the difference!), pieces of fried chicken (which seemed very greasy, by the way), Greek potatoes and maybe something else, but I don't remember anymore! I took a big serving of salad and cooked vegetables, with a small serving of pasta with chicken. I don't know why I was craving salad so much!! Anyway, one thing is for sure, I didn't want to take the chance of eating potatoes because of potential garlic on them nor eating fried chicken, because I didn't want to feel bad later for the picture, on top of the breath I had had if there were garlic on the potatoes!!

I ate my plate with appetite, while continuing to hear stupidities that were told at our table. For that matter, we learned about a story that is quite funny from Isabelle S. (who had talked to me about it on the previous day, but I don't remember in which circumstance) that will make us see Livin' On A Prayer in a very different way from now on! For those interested, please contact me, I will tell you about it, because I feel a little shy sharing the details...

After eating my plate, I went to get myself dessert: cookies and another cake with nuts in it were on the menu. Remembering my cookie trip during the fan club VIP party in February 2013 when I had eaten several of them, I told myself that I had to continue the tradition! I don't know what got to me, but we could have said that I hadn't eaten the whole day and it was barely 4hpm! While we were talking, I noticed a woman who was at a table near us and whom I recognized immediately: I'm pretty sure that she was alone in Las Vegas in April and she has a very nice picture with Jon in London. On the picture, he has his arm around her neck and he makes one of these knowing smiles that says a lot on the fact that he knows her! The other girls also recognized her; it was really her, without any doubt! I wonder what people who go on several fan club trips (more than two, let's say it!) do for a living! I would quite like to have the means to pay for them all! I learned a few days later that she is called Sandra and that she was about to attend her 198th Bon Jovi show that night! She is thus used to this and it is normal that Jon knows her a little!!

Geneviève made me laugh hard while asking me if I would be able to remember the name of every person who was with us around the table to mention them in my review. She thought that I had just met Isabelle S. and Rosy during the trip! When I told her that I had both of them as friends on Facebook and that I thought that I would remember their names, every girl around the table started laughing! It's true that I hadn't introduced Isabelle S. and Rosy officially to Geneviève and Maryse!

Rosy is a real clown when she is nervous (and to what it seems, even when she is not)! She made everyone laugh with the stupidities she said. She and Geneviève together are capable of starting up a party, that's for sure! I'm really happy to have had the chance to know Rosy a little more and a little better, because I had just heard about her through Isabelle S. without having met her officially!

I was really wondering how people who had VIP packages or tickets without a package through the fan club would go get their tickets, because we had come in the Air Canada Centre at 3hpm and I had heard that fan club members could go get their tickets only starting at 5h30pm or a little later... I didn't have to wait long to get the answer when Rob announced that Cory was at the bar with fan club tickets for those who needed to recuperate theirs! I found it very logical that she was there! At least, people didn't need to run and stress out after their picture with Jon. I was a little disappointed that Ally wasn't the one there, because I would have liked to go show her the picture that she took of me at the Bell Centre in February 2013 with my custom tank top to thank her for putting it on the fan club website afterwards!

At some point, we were all talking about our craziness towards Bon Jovi and the fact that we weren't maniac fans who would do anything, but we were rather moderate fans who were having a lot of fun. Geneviève said that this craziness was a lot healthier than doing drugs or drinking alcohol excessively. She told us the she had watched a TV show about big fans of artists and a woman who had been interviewed during the show had said: "Being a fan, it's only happiness..." We all completely agreed with this statement. Apart from the stress that we experience when we purchase tickets, this passion is nothing but good: we are happy, we meet amazing people for the most part who have the same passion, we create imperishable memories and we are able to become teenagers again at each show. The woman was right: it's only happiness...

Sandra fixed her nails by putting nail stickers on them that she could file for an express manicure. The final result was impressive! We all shared our stories about nail polish; I had mine done with an OPI gel not to get any problems, Isabelle S. had waited 30 minutes after putting on the final coat to her polish before getting dressed and even with that, she had made a notch in the nail of her thumb while zipping her pants, Geneviève and Maryse also had polish... Ah, the things that Jon can make us do and the stories he can make us tell!!

Maryse, Sandra and Geneviève went to the restrooms at around 4h15pm; there was already a waiting line... We were supposed to go down for our pictures at around 5hpm and we thought that it would be a good idea not to all wait to the last minute before going. Rosy, Carole, Isabelle S. and I stayed at the table in the meantime, while checking ourselves in our little pocket mirrors and while fixing ourselves a little to be perfect for our picture! Rosy and I had the same gloss brand, but mine had a little light which helps me putting some on in the dark, while Rosy's one was more recent and didn't have a light... We wondered if the company didn't run out of gloss lights. (Did you notice the number of stupidities that I tell?! No kidding, I think that I remember only the quarter! You can now thus imagine how much saliva we wasted that afternoon! Hours and hours of intense pleasure!)

The girls got back to the table after waiting for them for long minutes and it was my turn, as well as Carole's, Isabelle S.'s and Rosy's, to go get ourselves in line for the restrooms. The girls in line and in the restrooms were starting to be quite excited and they were all fixing themselves in the mirror of the restrooms! We had a hard time washing our hands because of the number of women who were putting makeup on and fixing their hair!!

When we got back to our table, the latest stupidity of the hour was a picture of Geneviève which was taken by Sandra with a funny background behind Geneviève. Too shy to take a picture of the girl behind Geneviève who was showing a nice butt crack to everybody with her shirt a little too high and her pants a little too low, Geneviève had volunteered to have her picture taken subtly while we could see the girl behind her. You will understand that I will not share this picture online to preserve the woman's identity.

Isabelle S. told us that after her picture with Jon in Las Vegas in April 2012, several people had asked her if she had her picture taken beside Jon's wax statue because he seems so perfect on the picture. It's true that he's almost perfect, I saw her picture several times and I was hoping to get a picture with Jon making that kind of big smile. We quite laughed when I said that Jon's statue was precisely well made to allow people to put their shoulder on his open hand like he had done for Rosy's shoulder on the picture with Jon, Isabelle S. and their other friend Isabelle L.! A few people had been skeptical for me too that I had met him and one or two people even told me that I had gotten my picture taken beside his wax statue... In all cases, the statue was moving, it talked to me and it even shook my hand!

Throughout the whole afternoon, I was still undecided about if I wanted to keep my cardigan on or not for my picture with Jon. It's crazy how insignificant things can become obsessions in extreme situations! What could it change if I wore a vest or not, if I were bare shoulders or not?! And still, this question overwhelmed several long minutes of my existence!

A little before 5hpm, we decided to get ourselves in the waiting line for the picture, because several women had already started heading towards where Rob had told us to go wait. It didn't bother me at all not to be one of the first ones to get my picture taken with Jon. We waited a while in line, and the excitement was starting to increase at the same time as the number of stupidities told by Geneviève increased. She was really on fire, it's impossible for me to tell them all, because there were way too many. I also remember that Rosy couldn't get a hold of herself and she was getting more nauseous because of the nervousness. I was strangely calm, but still a little excited with butterflies in my stomach... After all, I would be able to briefly press myself against Jon once again in maybe half an hour! Without taking into consideration that I was starting to be terrified by what I wanted to ask Jon this time! Would I dare going through with my dreams?

We started going forward slowly and we quickly understood why we were always stopping. We had to go back down one floor or two to arrive at the floor level where Jon was most probably. They made us go down using a goods elevator for heavy goods to carry around in the arena, since the capacity in terms of the number of people was higher than in a normal elevator! Geneviève and Isabelle S. went to the restrooms one last time. It seems like they really needed to go again, but I think that it was more the effect of alcohol that they had drunk and the nervousness that were doing that more than anything else! They came back right on time, because a security guard was counting the number of people he was letting pass and Geneviève and Isabelle S. had to tell this same guard that Rosy and I had their personal effects to allow them to come join us!

When I saw the group of people in front of us leave in the goods elevator, I turned around towards Isabelle S. and I told her that we could have believed that they were sending us to slaughtering or in a concentration camp! The image was maybe strong in my head to think about this, but once in the goods elevator, Isabelle S. was under the same impression. The goods elevator was made of metal without any finishing inside and we could see ourselves go down with the double doors like in old elevators without even feeling the movement in the goods elevator. It was really a weird idea to make us go down using that!

When we got downstairs, we waited long minutes in line in a hallway. We could see some employees of the arena go by and the Runaway Tours staff walk quickly between the beginning and the end of the waiting line. We weren't advancing at all and we suspected that Jon was not there yet, because the soundcheck was happening at the same moment and we could hear Jon's voice... Maryse recognized Diamond Ring and we have clearly heard Because We Can as well if I remember correctly.

Rosy and Isabelle S. decided at some point to take off their shoes, because their feet were hurting. I admit that I got tempted at some point, but I simply contented myself with moving my toes while taking my feet off my shoes temporarily, because I wasn't too keen on the idea to find myself in nylon stockings on an arena concrete floor! Rosy was getting more and more nervous, she was saying that she was nauseous almost non-stop and she was now asking for my purse, because for a reason we all still ignore, Carole and Sandra were a lot farther in front of us in the line! Some women in front of us took chairs that were wandering about in the hallway to sit down on them. I still wonder why they make us wait so long in line... I imagine that it's because they want to avoid having Jon wait if we ever waited at the last minute to position ourselves and we wouldn't be ready... Geneviève mentioned at some point that there were a lot of pheromones around and she was right!

At around 6hpm, the line started moving forward and we could see from far away flashes of a camera. That was it! It had started! The women around us were more and more excited, one more beautiful than the others. Several had put on dresses, but the most part had mostly taken out their main asset: their cleavage! It didn't take long for the first people who had just gotten their picture with Jon to come back towards us and some people in front of us asked them how Jon was. Judging by the size of the smile that most of them had, it had been a good experience. One of the women said that Jon was in a very good mood and very talkative, but that he was chewing gum. We all sighed in relief! For my part, I was a little worried about the fact that he was chewing gum, because the pictures from Las Vegas in October 2013 were not that beautiful with Jon who was chewing gum, because on several pictures, we could see it!!

While moving forward, we didn't have to wait long before we saw the background that they had put behind Jon for the pictures and we were pleasantly surprised to see that it was a background with the fan club logo, Backstage With Jon Bon Jovi! We had seen that an all-black background, when Jon is wearing a black shirt, is not pretty, so they had listened to us and they had changed the background! We also noticed that Rob had hooked his camera to a tripod this time, to our great happiness! The pictures taken in Las Vegas two weeks before were not beautiful at all because, among others, of a camera focus and stabilization problem. I was thus under the impression that Rob didn't take any chances and decided to put his camera on a tripod that was touching the ground but he could still move as he wished to ensure getting better pictures.

I started recording the ambient noise with my iPhone to hope to hear the exchange that I would have with Jon. I admit that I was starting to get quite nervous when I slipped my iPhone in my left back pocket, because I knew that the moment was coming. We saw Sandra put Carole's and her things down to her left on the ground not far away from where Jon was. We didn't see her during her picture with Jon, because he had his back on us and with the backdrop that blocked our view, it was impossible to see Jon except if we had only a few people in front of us. I asked Geneviève and Maryse if they wanted to go before me and they told me that it didn't matter. I thus put myself in the line to go first of our gang after Sandra and Carole who had already passed. When we dropped off our things on the ground, Geneviève, Maryse and I saw Sandra come back from her picture with a huge smile on her face. I couldn't wait to know what had happened during her first experience with Jon, but I still had to go through my experience, so I didn't insist on knowing what had happened right away.

Honestly, I don't remember at all anymore seeing the people in front of me move forward to take their pictures. However, I had the time to see a woman, who was wearing a blue and silver dress, who wanted to go back to see Jon after her picture to tell him something, but someone from Runaway Tours made her understand that her turn was over. She made a very disappointed face and she said: "Argh!" while going away. I also had the time to see that most of the women in front of me were going to Jon's left for the picture and I told myself that I absolutely wanted to be to his right because of my hair and my right profile that I prefer over my left profile. For that matter, Geneviève and Isabelle S. had testified a little earlier that both my profiles are really different!

I don't remember at all seeing the woman in front of me get her picture taken, I only remember seeing someone from Runaway Tours (I don't even know who it was!) signal me at the same time as Jon was looking in my direction. I then had my left hand on my scarf and I put it aside quickly to the left to draw Jon's glance on my tank top and unveil the message written on it. When I shook his hand (I don't remember doing that anymore in fact!), I told him: "Hi Jon, would you consider it please?" He briefly read the message on my tank top, he made me his one-million-dollar smile while looking at me and he said one or two words similar to "come here" or I don't know what while grabbing straight out my right shoulder with his hand and he pressed me gently but with conviction against him. I was freaking out to know that he had just done that!! In Las Vegas, he had just put his hand on my back, but that time, I really felt like I got pressed against him correctly. What a feeling, my god, I will never forget it! I remember that I got my face close to his, we were almost the same height with my high heels. I was back in paradise for a second or two, even if the moment seemed to last longer than that. I also remember that while pressing myself against him, I put my hand at the top of his back. I then looked at Rob's camera and I remember staring at the lens (in fact, I only remember seeing that, a big black circle of a camera) and I tried to smile, but it seemed like I couldn't do it. When I stepped backwards, I took again my scarf with my left hand and I told him: "Please? In Montreal?!" and he really took the time to read again the message on my tank top before telling me: "All right..." It wasn't an "all right" that meant "OK, I accept", but rather an "all right" to move on to somebody else. But well, I passed on my message, the ball is in his court! I knew at that moment that I would wear this kind of tank top to every show until he does it!

I immediately noticed after the picture that I totally blacked out on what happened between the moment when Jon pushed me against him and when I stepped backwards. I only remember looking at a big black circle of Rob's camera lens. I don't know why, I wasn't that nervous and it wasn't the first time that I was meeting Jon. I was just mentally not there I guess, the emotion being too intense for my brain to remember it... Here is the most beautiful of both my pictures with Jon... You will know how I reacted when I saw it for the first time on Saturday night after the second show a little later in the review...

Marie-Hélène Cyr and Jon Bon Jovi in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Maryse, Geneviève, Isabelle S. and Rosy went after me and we got all together again, after recuperating our personal stuff from the ground, with Sandra and Carole in the after-picture waiting line in the opposite direction from the waiting line for the picture. It was about 6h15pm at that moment and we then learned what had happened to Sandra during her picture. Sandra always wears tops that bring out her breasts and it seems that when Jon shook her hand, he looked directly at Sandra's breasts and he said: "Wo, baby!!" HA HA HA It must be quite a feeling to have Jon say that to you!! Sandra said that she had prepared something to say to Jon, but after he reacted like that, she froze, she couldn't talk and after the picture, she simply said: "Thank you Jon..." Poor her, I don't know if she regrets not having said to him what she wanted to say, but we heard about the "Wo, baby!!" the rest of the whole weekend, so I don't think that she is disappointed of her first experience with Jon! LOL

Maryse told me that Jon had seemed in a hurry to get it over with the pictures, because it seems that when he was reading the message on my tank top after the picture, he brought his fingers of one hand quickly towards him to signal Maryse to come closer right away. Isabelle S. had the time to tell him "Thank you for making my life amazing with your music" and honestly, I don't know what Rosy told him at all! Isabelle S. seemed to say that the pictures were being taken a lot faster than when she had met Jon for the first time in 2012. Personally, I thought that it was as fast as the other time in Las Vegas, but not faster. I sent a text message to Martin while we were waiting to tell him that it was over, it was a little later than 6h15pm... At around 6h25pm, rumor had it that everyone had passed. I was freaking out a little to have had the courage to ask him to dance with me, but I was freaking out even more, because I was sure that I didn't smile at all and that I hadn't shook his hand neither! Isabelle S. then told me: "Look, I was behind you, and yes, you shook hands, don't worry! And I saw that he really took the time to read again the message on your tank top after the picture!" She was freaking out about something else: she was sure about not looking at Rob's camera and she told Jon, after the picture: "My friend and I would like to sing with you tonight!" It seems like he looked at her more intensely, as if to take a mental picture of her to remember her. She couldn't believe that she had told him that and she was already worried about going up on the stage and singing off-key. Rosy wasn't the friend she was referring to, but rather her friend Isabelle L. who would be with her in the pit that night. They had made signs to ask him, but Isabelle S. had told herself that it was even better to ask him in person! I did my best to reassure her that we would not hear her sing that much, but she was really freaking out! She was sure that people would put their fingers in their ears when hearing her sing off-key!

The only regret that I have regarding my picture, because I realized that I didn't do it while talking about my experience to the other ones, is not thinking about putting my hand on Jon's chest or belly. I would have liked to feel his shirt in the palm of my hand... Next time maybe if one day, I do the crazy thing of going on another fan club trip that will include a photo op with Jon...

Maryse and Geneviève made some calculations and with the number of people that we were and the time it took to take the pictures, we had 6 seconds with Jon in average! It passes so fast, but at the same time, it seems like the brain stops because it is a moment that is so intense!

We were able to start going in the show room after having scanned our tickets shortly after 6h30pm. We had to pass in front of the background where Jon had been a few minutes before. Several women were getting their picture taken in front of the background once more to immortalize the moment, before heading towards the floor. We went in through the back of the floor and we headed towards the upper levels, after asking the person who was scanning the tickets where the nearest exit to go smoke was (because Sandra wanted to smoke) and where the restaurants in the arena were, because I was hungry and Isabelle S. and Rosy too. So Isabelle S., Rosy and I went to get ourselves something to eat, while Sandra had gone smoking and Carole would try to call her daughter to tell her how her picture had been. Geneviève and Maryse had left us a few minutes earlier after telling one of the Runaway Tours staff members that they had a VIP package through Ticketmaster for that evening and that they wanted to go to the VIP party which was included in their package. Dinner was included in their package, on top of special gifts.

I had a crazy craving for pizza, I don't quite know why... When we were looking for a stand where pizza was available, Isabelle L. appeared beside us and I was able to meet her officially. She knew what I looked like and it was the same for me, because we are friends on Facebook and I had seen her in Montreal in February, as well as seen all the pictures of her that Isabelle S. had shown me in the past. Isabelle S. mentioned to her that she had told Jon that they wanted to sing with him and I added: "And now, she wants to back down! Tell her that it's ridiculous!" Isabelle S. told her about her fear of singing off-key and Isabelle L. told her that it wasn't a problem and that she would sing louder to compensate.

Anyway, we found a Pizza Pizza stand and I could remember how good their pizza is... Isabelle S. went first and she took a slice and three bottles of water, because all of her gang was thirsty. I took a slice of vegetarian pizza and when I took a bite, I was under the impression of tasting pure happiness, on top of reliving the moment in Las Vegas when I had eaten a slice of pizza after my first picture with Jon! I was thus continuing the tradition and it was a beautiful tradition. There are no words to explain how I feel after a picture with Jon; great serenity takes over me, I'm way too happy to cry, I could take the whole world on my shoulders and still, I feel lighter than usual. It's a very nice feeling!

By blacking out like I had done during the picture, it took me time to go back to normal, my brain turning on slowly all the basic functions of my body. I thus didn't notice that Sandra arrived near me, nor that Carole came back, nor that both Isabelle and Rosy left. I was eating my pizza and that was all the information that my brain could process. The slice of pizza was good, I remember that! I imagine that this is how junkies feel after injecting themselves with a hard drug and if it's the case, I'm happy to be able to feel the same thing without drugs! On her part, Sandra had a Smirnoff Ice in one hand (I had never seen Sandra drink alcohol before a Bon Jovi show... With only that, it was very unusual!) and a fries container in the other hand. She was eating the fries by biting into each of them instead of taking them with her hands, because she simply didn't have any free hands to do it. I could notice that she was not in her normal mental mode neither, just like me...

I remember going to the restrooms (another function that my brain turned on quite quickly!) before going down to our seats on the floor. We had been standing up for a very long time earlier in the day and my back was hurting. I thus wanted to go sit a little before the show. I have no idea what time it was when we arrived at our seats, but it should have been a little before 7h30pm. We didn't know when the show was starting, because there were no opening acts and our ticket indicated 7h30pm as the show time, while it was written 8h30pm on the itinerary that Runaway Tours had sent us. Let's say that the gap was still quite significant! We thus didn't take any chances and we went to sit down for 7h30pm.

When we got to our seats, we noticed that we were dead center in the sixth row after the pit. Sandra and I had Jon's microphone directly in front of us! I took the closest seat to the center and Sandra sat down on my right. We had good tickets, but I would have really loved to be closer nonetheless! We had sworn, Sandra and I in March 2010, when we ended up in the seventh row after the pit, that we would never be so far away again... The sixth row was quite the limit as well!

Sandra talked a lot to the woman who was on our right. I remember that she said she didn't take any pictures on this tour, because for a reason she doesn't know, they don't turn out well. It's true that there is often white smoke in front of Jon even if we don't see it and the spotlights are often enemies rather than allies, making Jon as white as a sheet. I also think that the fact of having people behind the stage doesn't help either, because the camera has more difficulties focusing... She and Sandra also agreed to say that Phil X, Richie's replacement, was doing quite a nice job and that fans liked him more and more. I made the comment as to if Richie isn't careful, fans will accept Phil like a real Bon Jovi band member. Sandra said that she liked Phil's attitude, that is the attitude of a child who just received a new toy as a gift and that he enjoys it to the fullest. His toy is his place within Bon Jovi. The woman beside Sandra showed us a picture of her with Phil; it seems like he was staying at the same hotel as us and that she and her friend had met him while going smoking the previous night... It seems like he was very kind, he took the time to talk to them and take pictures while verifying that they were good before leaving... In short, the woman beside Sandra was sold on Phil! And Sandra was beating herself down for going smoking 15 minutes too early the previous night, because Phil arrived in the lobby 15 minutes later than the time when she had gone smoking!

While Sandra was talking to the woman beside her, I was following the conversation with one ear and I was looking at the crowd at the same time. At some point, I saw a couple arrive behind us and the woman didn't seem happy at all. She got up and went to talk to an employee of the Air Canada Centre. Strangely, both women were far away, but I could hear their conversation. The woman was sure that she would be in the pit with tickets in the seventh row (and I could see that she had a VIP badge, maybe that was the reason why her basic assumption was that she would be in the pit...) and she didn't understand why she was so far away from the stage. The employee explained to her that there were not seven rows in the pit anyway and that she had gotten the wrong information when buying her tickets. The woman was really mad and she said that the clerk to whom she had talked to when she bought the tickets had told her not to rely on the seating chart and that her tickets would be seven rows away from the stage. She was really discouraged, but tough luck, there wasn't anything that the employee could do for her. At the end of the show, she saw the Runaway Tours VIP badge around Sandra's neck and she started asking her plenty of questions about how to buy this package, if we had met Jon, etc. and she added: "That's what I want!" Well, you just need to pay to subscribe to the fan club and then pay for a fan club trip... But you will realize that it's a little more expensive than your VIP package with tickets in the seventh row on the floor...

Before the show started, Sandra called one of the guys who were selling alcohol to ask him for another Smirnoff Ice... Hum, Sandra never drinks, and she was now buying her second Smirnoff Ice?! Her brain should not have been completely back to normal!! She still seemed to be on a cloud with the "Wo, baby!!"

At around 8hpm, I started getting ready more actively, because I suspected well that it would not be very long before the band came on the stage. Camera around my neck, wearing my custom tank top (even if I had no chances of dancing with Jon that night), purse hooked to the seat so it wouldn't touch the ground and not on the seat as is and my scarf and cardigan that I was wearing for my picture with Jon removed: I was ready!

At around 8h15pm, the clock ticks of the beginning of the AC/DC song called Hells Bells started ringing in the Air Canada Centre. Several people started screaming and several others went back to their seats. I was quite surprised to see that the band had not changed their last song before their entrance on the stage! The lights went off shortly after and people started screaming, but never louder than at the Bell Centre. For that matter, I may make the comparison often throughout the review with Montreal's crowd... I could notice, without any doubts, that Toronto's crowd really isn't Montreal's crowd. Never should there be any comparison in fact! It was maybe the fact that I was far away from the stage (I'm always under the impression that the intensity of the crowd decreases as we move away from the stage), but I thought that there was not much atmosphere. Geneviève confirmed to me the following night that indeed, the crowd was quite quiet, even in the pit, so I wasn't just the only one thinking that!

When I heard the first notes of That's What The Water Made Me, I had a flashback from the beginning of the show in Las Vegas when I had had my first picture with Jon and that the show had started with the same song. I remember the euphoria that I had felt when I had seen Jon come on the stage a few hours after being beside him.

The list of songs that they played was:


A 23-song show that lasted from about 8h15pm to 10h35pm. I already saw longer shows, but it's still quite easy to accept! Honestly, I stopped counting the number of shows that I went to, because in the last years, I saw a lot of them and I lost the official count! However, I can say it, and it's not the first time that I say it, the magic around the first show is not really there anymore. To compensate such a dull comment like this, I must say that going to a Bon Jovi show is for me today an opportunity to be with my favorite band and simply enjoy myself by dancing, by singing, by participating to things that Jon tells us to do and by screaming from time to time. It's like going to a family party with people I want to see... It's always fun! I took a little more than 886 pictures (I don't know the exact number, because I unfortunately deleted the last pictures that I took when I came back to the hotel after the show...) and I made 15 videos. I didn't take a lot of pictures, because I was far away and the lighting being what it is on this tour, I knew that most of the pictures would be blurry... I decided to share with you my best pictures of that evening.

Right before starting You Give Love A Bad Name, Jon made the crowd get up on their feet by saying: "This ain't television! Let me know that you're out there! Get up off of your seats!" It seems like he repeated often "Get up off of your seats" before beginning to sing "Shot through the heart, and you're to blame, you give love a bad name"...

Not very long after the show started, I saw Jon look straight in front of him and I told myself that the advantage of being directly in front of Jon was that I was always under the impression that he was looking at me! But it wasn't the case! I also noticed that Jon was in a really good mood, because he was smiling a lot and most particularly during the first songs.

I was quite happy to hear Raise Your Hands, but I also remembered how my arms and the top of my back hurt when I swayed my arms in the air! It's about at the same time of the show that I looked in the pit and that I told myself that that night, I was giving away my place to people who wanted to end up in the pit at least once. However, I also told myself that it was a sacrifice for me to do that, because I would always want to be in the pit!

Jon talked to the crowd right before It's My Life by saying: "Good evening Toronto, Ontario! Boy, it's good to be back! I'm not gonna waste time talking in the next two nights, OK? All I gotta say is that we've got a looong way to go tonight. So strap in!" It was weird for me to hear "Toronto" from Jon's mouth... I'm so used to hear "Montreal"... In fact, as I had made the comment to Sandra when we were getting to our seats before the show, I was about to see Bon Jovi for the first time in another arena than the Bell Centre that still hosts NHL hockey... It's normal that I was destabilized to hear "Toronto" from Jon's mouth!

I really like the beginning of Because We Can when Jon makes us clap our hands! That one is really good in concert and I sincerely hope that it will survive this tour and that it will be played during subsequent tours!

I noticed that Jon seemed to take a wicked pleasure in shaking his head from side to side to get rid of the most sweat possible from his hair. I saw a big cloud of droplets of water around Jon's head more than once. I thought about Geneviève and Maryse who were in the second row of the pit and I wondered if they were receiving some... I remember that my father had already commented in the past about the women in the front who had to bring an umbrella not to get wet... Geneviève confirmed to me the next day that they didn't get wet! Also, when Jon was drinking a sip of water, I could see that he was often spitting on the stage... Anyway, the stage must be quite filthy at the end of the evening and I'm not sure that I would walk bare feet on the stage neither... I understand that it's Jon's sweat, but it's still sweat nonetheless!!

When What About Now started, I told myself that it was a lot more pleasant to hear the songs from the new album now that I've been listening to them for several months! And I must say that the What About Now album is one of my favorites!

Two signs drew my attention in the bleachers on my left. One of them said: "3rd generation Jovi fan", so in that area, there was a grandparent, a parent and a child of the same family! Wow! The other sign was available throughout the show and it indicated: "Welcome home Phil X". I had forgotten that Phil was Canadian!

I wondered for a long time during the show why people were bothering taking pictures with their smart phone while they could very well see (well, I hope!) that the pictures would be blurry from their touch screen. When taking pictures, they block the view of people behind them and moreover, the memories will not be so good. Why not leave it to the people who have real cameras and who share joyfully their best pictures on the internet afterwards?! Anyway, I didn't understand this one...

I had a little thought for my two-year-old son while hearing the first notes of We Got It Going On, while Sandra was screaming like crazy. My son has a soft spot for this song and he asks me for it almost every day when we come back together from daycare. I told myself that I was hearing his song with the people who created it and who play it live! I wondered at this moment if one day, he would come with me to a Bon Jovi show and if he would enjoy it as much to hear it live! It's about the only thought that I had for my son that evening; once more, Bon Jovi made me forget completely about my usual life!

There were four empty seats in the row in front of us since the beginning of the show and the woman who was supposed to be on my left in front of me was merrily moving in the row to dance. Sandra was tired at some point to see her do that, because she was often raising her hands and she was taller than me, so she was quite blocking Sandra's view! I wondered at some point if I could have jumped over my seat to move one row forward... It was quite tempting at some point, because the show was well underway and there was still nobody in front of us, apart from the woman who was taking five seats wide! Unfortunately, right before Keep The Faith, the four people who had the seats in front of us arrived... At around 9hpm... I don't understand how someone can have tickets in the fifth row on the floor for a rock show and arrive an hour late... I would have lived without the four people who seemed to be six feet tall each, women included! It seemed to be two couples, but the men seemed quite old compared to the women... I will not say what they made me think about, but you can imagine the style... Men who want to please younger women... Both men left immediately after arriving, letting both women all alone during a few songs. They missed Jon's arrival at the catwalk after Keep The Faith and they came back with popcorn and drinks when the part of the four songs at the catwalk was almost over!! They were giving me the impression that they didn't really want to be there...

I had a very hard time seeing the stage during Keep The Faith with the six-foot tall man and woman who were in front of me and the man who was continuously getting closer to the woman. They were simply and completely blocking my view! At least when both people in front of me had a normal space between them, I was able to see something in front of them between their head... I thought about trying to take pictures of Jon to obtain one with his maracas which are not blurry very late during the song, but it was really hard! The band played without Jon at the end of the song to let him change before going to the catwalk.

Lights went off after Keep The Faith and from our angle, Jon seemed to cross the pit in the middle. I learned afterwards that he passed at the same place as usual, by walking along the catwalk on the right part of the pit while looking towards the stage. When he arrived at the catwalk, Jon was definitively and obviously closer to us. He talked to the crowd to say that he would sing a song from the last album. When he said that, I immediately thought that we would get Amen. I was not disappointed! At first, when there was only music, Jon walked around a little to touch the hand of several fans in the pit and he came back very quickly at the microphone right on time to start singing. We could have said that he had forgotten that he had to sing at that moment! I thought again about the Las Vegas show when I had heard Amen at the catwalk and that I had fallen in love. Jon sings this song with so much intensity... It's just a little too bad that I remember hearing quite clearly conversations of people around me during the song. Didn't they want to savor the show instead of talking to each other or what??

After Amen, Jon invited Tico, David and Bobby Bandiera to come join him at the catwalk. I'm not keen on Someday I'll Be Saturday Night at all, but when I have almost the whole band a few rows from me, it is already more bearable! Then, they continued with Diamond Ring. The last time that I had heard this song, it was in Montreal and Richie was still there. He and Jon had sung it loaded with emotion and I must say that there was a little less emotion that night with most part of the band at the catwalk...

The other band members went back to the main stage afterwards and Jon stayed for a last song at the catwalk, and not the least, (You Want To) Make A Memory. I was surprised to sing it correctly, with a nice voice without singing too off-key. I was quite proud of myself; usually, I quite ruin it! Towards the end of the song, Jon went back slowly to the main stage while touching the hand of a few people who had gathered along the catwalk.

The crowd reacted well to the beginning of Born To Be My Baby; it's always a song which brings the crowd up on their feet, almost as much as at the beginning of It's My Life. The "na na na na, na na na, na na na na" of the end were extraordinary with the band encouraging us to sing them as loud as possible.

Even if I didn't hear it myself, Sandra told me that she could hear someone in the crowd behind us say from time to time: "Where's Richie Sambora?!" Hum... This person had certainly not followed the band's news since the beginning of the tour, because we haven't heard from him and his future with the band since the beginning of April 2013!

I was really in a frustration period after the part of the show at the catwalk because of the man in front of me. I don't like to say that, because I decide how I react to events and I must not blame others for my mood, but for once, I would like to say that it's his fault if I didn't spend a beautiful second half of the show, there! Even if I were dead center in the row and had Jon directly in front of me, being stuck with a big head in front of me quite killed the moment...

When Jon said: "It's alright!", it didn't take me more to start making a video. I saw a beach-ball land farther away in front of me and I told myself: "Oh no, not a ball during this song! What's the idea?!" I also saw two bright pink signs in the pit up front on the left, I was sure that it was Isabelle S. and Isabelle L. who were asking him to sing with him. I was so sure that he would see the signs and that he would tell them to come on the stage. I had a feeling like this after Isabelle S. had told him that she wanted to sing with him! Unfortunately, he didn't make anyone come on the stage to sing with him. I was so disappointed for them!! I even learned afterwards that Maryse and Geneviève had signs to ask Jon the same thing. I must believe that I was ready to make a video of friends going to sing on the stage! I learned the next day that Geneviève made Jon burst into laughter, because it seems like at the beginning of the song, she was holding her sign upside down and Jon saw it and signaled her that it was upside down... Geneviève didn't insist on me telling this, but everything that makes Jon laugh is worth telling! Jon made us sing a little part of the song after the solo, I was seeing this for the first time! Even David had both arms in the air and he was singing the lyrics without his microphone, as if to indicate to us what to sing.

I told myself during the show that it was my second consecutive show during which I was wearing high heels and wearing more elegant clothes than usual apart from the top. We agree that a white tank top with black text written on it is not very elegant, but the pants were very tight and I'm not used to wearing this kind of pants... I was even wearing nylon stockings that night! I told myself at that moment that I quite liked my new style! I don't know if I'll continue the tradition or if I will come back to my jeans at some point, but for the moment, I was living my trip of the fan dressed more elegantly!

We had a nice surprise during I'll Sleep When I'm Dead (which I still adore a lot in concert!) when Jon stopped singing to say: "We've played here so many times, it feels like a part of me anyhow..." (He probably said something before, but I don't remember anymore...) He then pretended that David's keyboards were a jukebox and after a few moment of consultation on the stage, he announced that David was going to sing a rock classic cover. When I heard the first notes of Great Balls Of Fire, I was really happy, because I was hearing it live for the first time! David did quite a nice job singing it! I even dare saying that the party really started in the Air Canada Centre when David sang! The band members seemed to enjoy themselves like crazy young guys on the stage! Afterwards, the band continued with another rock classic, Taking Care Of Business. I remember that Jon called Phil "the X man" before starting singing the song!

What I found a little too bad, and Jon did it a few times during the evening, is that he had to insist for people to raise their hands in the air during songs when Jon invites the crowd to participate... Let's say that he had to insist more than in Montreal... During I'll Sleep When I'm Dead, Jon slid his guitar neck on the side where the strings are along his microphone stand, triggering a weird sound effect! He did it another time during the evening, I don't remember when anymore... I was seeing him do that for the first time!

When Bad Medicine started, almost all people gathered in the Air Canada Centre stood up. What struck me the most during this song is the fact that there were no visual effects apart from the spotlights! Indeed, the hexagonal columns not being at the back of the stage anymore and being replaced by some kind of metal structures which looked like skeletons of the former hexagonal columns, nothing could be projected on these structures! I told myself that Martin would be a little disappointed to attend this show, because there were no beautiful women on the columns during this song! However, Jon decided to do a last round on the catwalk during Bad Medicine to shake as many hands as possible, triggering the first row after the catwalk and in the pit go crazy. Jon started making his usual singing exercises in the middle of Bad Medicine and at the end, he shouted out, while turning towards the crowd and by making his eyes as wide as possible: "Can you hear me now??!!" I was sure that he simply wanted to tease us with his singing exercises, but Jon blew off the roof of the arena by starting Shout! I was so happy to hear it; usually, he pretends to start it and he doesn't do it. I decided not to make a video and take the opportunity to let myself loose a little more. It made me feel good!

I also noticed during the show that we could see Jon's reflection on Tico's drums because the bass drum had a mirror-like coating! I was seeing such an effect for the first time!

The band left the stage after Bad Medicine. The crowd screamed and clapped their hands, but the crowd didn't go totally crazy in the Air Canada Centre. Background rock music started playing in the arena with a dim light on the stage. The man who was in front of me was now sitting down to my great happiness; in fact, he was in front of Sandra, but when he was getting closer to the woman who was with him, he was completely in front of me. I realized that he had a hard time enduring people's screams, so a light bulb went on in my head. If I screamed a lot, would his head hurt so much that he would stay down?!

The band came back and they started playing Runaway, triggering Sandra to go crazy and make her start screaming. I also started screaming forward for the man to say seated. He put his hands on his ears, he seemed to find the sound quite loud! I never enjoyed myself like this on Runaway! The woman on my left seemed to wonder what had gotten to me!

After Runaway, Jon talked to Toronto's crowd once more to thank them. Here is what I could understand from the video that I made: "I want to thank you all very much for coming to see us. And I would like to thank you, each and everyone, for 30 years of your kindness, your support, your friendship, your patience... Toronto's been particularly nice to us. I've been looking out in the course of this tour and I realize that everybody everywhere has one of those cellphone cameras... There's nobody hiding anything, no secrets, nowhere. But it's cool because, you know, instead of a lighter or a match when we started out, now everybody goes with a cellphone. So if you have a cellphone camera, turn it on, hold it up, let's light up the ACC! That's right, turn it on, let me see. (mumbling...) The stars are right here, underneath that roof. That's right! So Monday when you go back to school, or you go to work, or maybe even tomorrow, and everybody says: Where the hell were you all night? You could just say: Hey! I spent the night with Bon Jovi!" The crowd screamed really loud when he said that. The effect was really beautiful with the great number of people who had opened their cellular phone. I was making a video, so it was hard for me to go get my iPhone from my purse hooked underneath my seat... I told myself that I would do it the next day. Jon let us sing the first verse of Wanted Dead Or Alive alone. It made an amazing effect to see the little lights everywhere in the Air Canada Centre! Jon found a nice replacement to the chemistry that existed between him and Richie during this song by making us take out our cellular phones, but it was still a little weird not seeing Richie play and sing it with Jon... Mostly that I was under the impression that Jon was playing guitar alone that night during that song... However, with Phil's attitude and presence on the stage, on top of his beautiful voice which often accompanies Jon's, it makes up for the little absences like these. We like Phil very much, I even saw people in front of me, towards the end of the show, put their arms in the air in a cross, to do an X like in "Phil X"... Anyway, we sang the first verse very loud, I still need to give that to the crowd. I even saw David Bergman come at the back of the stage while we were singing to take a picture of the crowd with Jon seen from the back.

When Have A Nice Day started, I once again decided that I would piss off the man in front of me a little. I screamed so much during this song! I saw at some point that Sandra turned around towards me to see me scream the closest possible to the ears of the man who was then standing up. She told me after the show that she found it very funny to see me do that, because she had figured out that I was doing that on purpose to piss off the man! It takes what it takes in life! And what better than to unwind during a song that is called Have A Nice Day and that is used to say to others to get out of my hair politely!

Jon started playing an acoustic version of Livin' On A Prayer like on the Cross Road album on which the song had been renamed Prayer 94, with his guitar in his hand instead of starting it a cappella like he used to do it in the past. I was so tired of seeing the head of the man in front of me pass in front of my field of view that I screamed, quite loud and not on purpose, "Grosse tête!!" (big head) while I was making a video! After the first verse, the band started playing it normally from the beginning, to the great happiness of people in the room! I started jumping instinctively with Jon at the beginning of the song and I wondered how I had handled having so much energy, because I had quite danced a lot during the evening. I sang so loud at the end of the song when Jon made us sing, I was able to lose my voice for real, mostly with my piercing and lower-note screams to piss off the man in front of me!

After Livin' On A Prayer, the band members took their final bow and Jon took off his ear plugs, so I knew that it was over. The band disappeared by the staircase at the back of the stage and the lights in the arena didn't take long to turn on. We gathered our personal stuff and we moved forward to go join Maryse and Geneviève who were still in the pit, before going to join Carole to whom we had said we would meet in section 120 while going out. A security guard in front of the floor after the pit told us to turn back, because the arena had to be emptied as quickly as possible. Strangely, he didn't seem to believe us when we mentioned to him that we were waiting for our friends in the pit. We had the scream their names for them to turn around and to have the guard believe us. However, we could still not stay there, so Maryse and Geneviève went out quite quickly afterwards. They had received merchandise with their VIP package, including a grey travel bag, a flashlight, a card deck, David Bergman's book and a makeup case if I remember well. They even had made David Bergman sign in their book since he was at the VIP party! What a chance!!

Maryse told us that there was a woman in the first row of the pit who was eating ice scream at the beginning of the show, while looking at Jon... It seems like Jon made her a weird face at some point... I admit that it must be quite strange for Jon to see someone eat ice cream as if the person were in her living room in front of her television!

We found Carole who took longer to come out of the room. While waiting for her, we noticed that the Air Canada Centre staff had put a sign on top of the sign for the men's restrooms to indicate that it was temporarily women's restrooms. I was seeing this for the first time and it seems like it was quite destabilizing for a woman to go in there, because there were a lot more urinals than closed booths! Anyway, we headed towards the Real Sports Bar & Grill which was just in front of the Air Canada Centre and where the Runaway Tours staff had told us to go after the show to continue the evening. We learned that this bar contains the biggest television in North America! Having seen the television with my own eyes, it's true that it's quite impressive! When we arrived, a lot of people had already arrived and all the tables seemed taken. I saw both Isabelle and Rosy at a table, so I went to say hello to them. I told the Isabelle that I had seen their signs before Who Says You Can't Go Home and Isabelle S. told me that Jon saw them at the end and he signaled them meaning: "Oops, sorry girls..." I told them afterwards that I just wanted to say hi and that I was going back to my gang. When I went back near "my" gang, the girls had decided not to stay and go back to the hotel. I wasn't mad to hear that, because I didn't really want to be in a bar after a show. I was still tired from my evening and I never need to unwind with a drink after a show!

We went outside and Maryse was able to find her way like a pro in the streets of Toronto while telling us that we needed to go south and that the street in front of us would bring us north, etc. I recognized her great sense of direction, because yes, I knew in which direction we had to go, but I had no idea about cardinal points at night! Personally, if the sun is not there, I cannot know where is north, south, west or east! Anyway, we arrived at the hotel after a short walk in the streets of Toronto. I hadn't taken a coat to avoid dragging it along everywhere during several hours and despite the fact that the temperature was still mild for the time of year, I was starting to be anxious to go in the hotel! I was still just wearing nylon stockings with only a three-quarter sleeve cardigan!

When I went into my hotel room, I decided to continue my show review a little and empty my SD card immediately from all the pictures I had taken and all the videos I had made. After transferring the pictures of one of two folders which contained pictures from the show, I unfortunately erased all the picture folders on my card, so I lost a few pictures from the show! While looking at the last pictures that I had recuperated, I saw that I wasn't missing many, fortunately! Phew! At least I was able to preserve my videos, otherwise, I would have beaten myself over it!

Before going to bed, I made the decision to order room service for the next morning's breakfast that would serve as my lunch. I ordered it for 10h45am and I took the things with ham, eggs, toasts... I was already hungry! Let's say that I had never ordered room service for breakfast, except once or twice when I was with Martin in a hotel room and the breakfast was included... But personally, I had never made the decision to order room service and Geneviève and Maryse had given me the idea earlier during the day! We only live once and I wanted to enjoy it to live a more crazy life during that weekend... If we can call that craziness to order room service for breakfast!

I went to bed at around 2ham in the morning, completely exhausted from my day, but still quite satisfied of my second meeting with Jon! Honestly, I would have stayed up a little bit more, but my conscience still reminded me that it would be a good idea to get some rest for the second show on the next day where I would be back in the pit!

Day 2 - Induction into the Air Canada Centre hall of fame

Venue: Air Canada Centre
Ticket: Circle Pit 2, Row 3, Seat 15
Pictures: Available
Videos: Available

Saturday morning, I woke up early once again, but I was still floating on a little cloud... I had a hard time realizing that I had had the incredible chance of having a nice meeting with Jon once again! I took my time to get up, by staying in bed for a while with my pyjamas on while writing my review. Have I already said that I like my loneliness from time to time? That loneliness made me so happy that morning; me alone with my beautiful thoughts of Jon... Total happiness... I also hydrated myself well by drinking a lot of water during the morning, because the previous day, my hoarse voice which was as if I had spent an evening with smokers around me had made me realize that if I wanted to be able to scream the next day, I had to keep my throat well hydrated!

I received my super breakfast at the room at 10h45am sharp and despite the fact that it was really not worth what it cost me, I savored it as if I were only going to eat that during the whole day. While eating, I concluded with myself that living the life of a die-hard fan was still fun in the short term! Here is what my breakfast looked like (do not forget that it cost me 32$ with a 5$ discount on top of that!):

Breakfast at Marie-Hélène Cyr's room in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

After eating my breakfast, I went outside to go get the pit tickets that I had purchased through Ticketmaster. I could get them at the Air Canada Centre ticket office. I wasn't tempted to go out with the rain that was falling, but the forecast didn't call for a nice weather all day long and I had to go get them at some point! I didn't want to wait to go in the afternoon, because I told myself that there would probably be quite a few people at that moment than at lunch hour. I picked up my tickets without any problems and I could even admire some things that are displayed inside the Air Canada Centre. Two concrete columns were also displaying banners to say that the Air Canada Centre was celebrating the 17 Bon Jovi shows in the building throughout the years. A few people were busy at the bottom of a column and I quite wondered what they were doing... I would learn it a little later during the day... If I had known...

When I came back to my room, I continued my show review and I slowly got ready for the second Bon Jovi show of the weekend. I did the same things as the previous day, but it took me half an hour less time. I think that the previous day's stress was for something! I was thus ready at 2hpm, dressed with my super custom tank top (by the way, I have two identical, so it wasn't the same as the previous day!), my scarf and my burgundy cardigan from the previous day, my shiny denim skinny pants which looked like they were leather pants, my nylon stockings and my high heels, and the show was only in the evening! However, the Runaway Tours staff had told us Thursday night during the welcome party that we could get our tour program autographed by Jon and David Bergman's book on the Saturday afternoon from 3hpm to 3h30pm. We thus all went down for 3hpm in the hotel lobby. The door of the room where the distribution of the gifts would be done was not open. I thought it was strange for them to close the door, what did they have to hide so much anyway?

When I entered the room a few minutes later, I saw that David Bergman was there, so I suspected that we would be able to have him sign in our books. Indeed, I think that it was Rob who said that David was there for us. I was really happy! Maryse and Geneviève found out the name of a loved one who would want the book, because they had already made David sign on the previous day in their book that they had received during the VIP party with Ticketmaster. We had to make the line to go get our program and our book and make another line to make David sign. While waiting for our signature, a woman in front of us looked at her book and she made a surprised face. Her book didn't have a plastic cover on it... We could see that Jon had signed in her copy of the book!! The books were for the most of them covered with a plastic cover, but a few of them were not... Almost at the same time as the woman in front of us realized the special gift that she had just received, we could see a few members of the Runaway Tours staff look at all the books that had not been distributed yet and most particularly those that didn't have a plastic cover... They seemed as surprised as us to see Jon's signature in all the uncovered books... Sandra rushed to the table where we were receiving our gifts and she really insisted to exchange her book for one that was signed. There were not many left from what I could see from where I was. Finally, she got an autographed one and when she came back near us, she told us that she completely wrested the autographed book from the hand of the man who was holding it (honestly, I don't remember if it were Darin, Joe or someone else anymore) to exchange it for the one that she had at first! It seems like it was the last autographed one that they had, but I doubt it, because I saw that the books that were not covered by the plastic cover were put back in a box... I thus don't know if it's Jon who decided to give an additional gift to some fans or if these books were intended to us or not, but well, it's a nice surprise nonetheless!

Rob was beside David to get the money from those who had bought an item at the auction during the welcome party. When Sandra arrived in front of him, she noticed that he was wearing the same Slippery When Wet necklace that Matt was wearing at the welcome party. She asked him if she could take a picture of the necklace, but Rob gently told her: "I'd rather not..." It's true that this necklace is a trademark and that it is made of gold and diamonds, so it's probably to avoid the reproduction of the necklace that Rob was so reluctant... She contented herself by touching it... I asked Rob again when our pictures with Jon would be available and he told me: "As soon as possible, I'm doing my best... But Tuesday at the latest, I promise!" He must have been asked the question so many times since the previous day, but at the same time, let's agree to say that this is what the fans were waiting for the most and the idea of having to wait several days before seeing them was very hard to accept!

Geneviève and Maryse asked for David' dedication for loved ones whose names are not hard to say in English. David then said: "Great, easy names, I like that!" I couldn't help but tell him (I was just beside Geneviève and Maryse): "Wait until you hear mine!" and he answered: "Oh oh, I spoke too fast I guess!" while laughing. He was in a good mood and quite relaxed. I had my VIP badge around my neck and my name was written on it, so when I arrived in front of him, I simply showed my badge to make it easier for him. He looked at my name, he tried to say it and he told me: "All right, I think I can do it!" while smiling and he started signing in my book while taking his time to write each letter of my name. I could see that he was thinking about my name at each letter that he was writing, but I didn't see him look at my badge again and he wrote it without any mistakes (he still didn't make the accents)! I was really impressed! I told him: "I really enjoy your work! I really hope that there are going to be more books..." He looked at me and he smiled at me while telling me: "Thank you so much! We never know what the future holds..." with a mischievous smile...

We went back up to our room afterwards, while telling ourselves that we had to go for dinner towards the end of the afternoon. I was barely back in my room and installed comfortably in a long chair to continue my review when Maryse had already sent us an email to ask us if we wanted to go to the Jack Astor's which was a few blocks away from the hotel and near the Air Canada Centre. In a few emails, we agreed to meet at 4h45pm in my room or Sandra's. Our goal was to arrive at the restaurant for 5hpm to have enough time to eat before the show.

I went to Sandra's room at around 4h45pm and Maryse and Geneviève arrived a few minutes later. Since they didn't know if Sandra and I were together or not when they were coming down on our floor, one of them was going to knock on Sandra's door while the other one was going to knock on mine. Until that moment, I was always in Sandra's room right before they were coming down, so the one who was knocking on Sandra's door was saying to the other one who was in front of my door that I was in Sandra's. Anyway, before going down to go eat, Sandra had to fix a little "cleavage" problem, because the top that she was wearing for the show that night was showing her "grand canyon"... She was able to limit the damage with safety pins judiciously positioned... Let's say that she would have turned quite a lot of heads that night if she hadn't been able to fix the problem!

Anyway, we, all the gang, went down to the hotel lobby and we went out by the hotel entrance. Nice or bad weather, we couldn't get wet at the hotel entrance, because it was entirely covered! It took a few minutes before an available taxi came to the hotel. A first taxi arrived and it was taking a really long time for the people who were already in it and who were arriving at the hotel to get out of the taxi. After a few minutes, we wondered if the people were paying the taxi driver in nature or what... It was taking really long!! When the people finally got out, we came close to the taxi and when the driver heard where we wanted to go, he refused to take us! I imagine that he was not authorized to drive people from the hotel and that he could simply bring some at the hotel... Anyway, the next taxi that arrived accepted to bring us to the restaurant, so we got in it. A few minutes later, we had arrived and it cost us a big 8.25$ split in four! It's not expensive to avoid having the wind mess up our hair, freeze ourselves outside or have the rain fall on us!! It was really colder that day than the previous day and it wasn't really tempting for us to walk very far, mostly because we wanted to keep a little bit of energy for the second show. I had had a down during the afternoon, I was under the impression that I would fall asleep at some point while writing my review. My situation didn't seem very different from the other girls' situation, because we had a little bit of energy at the end of the afternoon, but less than the previous day... So, we wanted to limit our steps to the strict minimum!

We got in the Jack Astor's to realize that there were already plenty of people there and televisions inside were presenting the Bon Jovi show in September 2000 during the Crush tour! We were quite happy with our choice of restaurant (and thanks to Maryse who suggested it). Sandra stepped forward to put our names down on the waiting list and when she came back towards us with some kind of pager to indicate when our table would be ready, she said that we had a waiting time of about forty minutes... We didn't have much choice, restaurants near the Air Canada Centre would probably be as full as the other ones! We weren't in such a rush neither... The woman at the front desk told us that we still could go get a drink at the bar farther in the restaurant. When we arrived at the bar, two people were leaving, so Geneviève and Maryse were able to get stools and the two men who were on the left of these two free stools saw that we were four. They thus decided to leave as well, since they had finished their drink. We were quite happy to be able to be seated at the bar that fast! A waitress came to ask us what we wanted to drink and we all ordered something; I had sparkling water, because I didn't feel good enough to drink alcohol, I was way too relaxed already!

After a few minutes seated at the bar, Maryse told us: "Everywhere I look, I see Jon..." Indeed, there were a lot of televisions! She told me that it was the sentence that I had to remember concerning the dinner for my review! For that matter, I was under the impression throughout the whole weekend that I was writing a collective review, because the other girls were suggesting things to say in my review and things that could only be told face to face... Let's say that we fooled about often during the weekend... and numerous conversations were about the word "crack": butt crack, breast crack (cleavage), hair separation... Honestly, I couldn't think that girls could talk about cracks so much, and mostly about cleavage and be so preoccupied by their breasts... My god, fortunately we were in Ontario where several people don't understand French, because several would have surely been discouraged to hear us!!

Geneviève told us that she had called her husband during the day and that her youngest daughter thought that she was still on the train since Thursday! I thought it was really cute! Her daughter is a few months younger than my son, so I can appreciate this kind of reasoning from a child of her age! I quite laughed when she said that of her daughter, because I could imagine a little girl who still thinks that her mother is on the train three days later...

On her part, Maryse told us that when Jon was on the catwalk the previous day and that she and Geneviève were in the pit, she had looked at Jon and a spotlight was blinding her a little, so she could not see Jon very clearly... She told us that she had maybe seen the "tunnel" so famous at the end of life and that Jon was in it, so it had been tempting to follow the light... The parallel with the little green toys from Toys Story which were getting picked up from the toy machine was too easy to make at that moment!!

After a few minutes seated at the bar with our drinks, we asked a waiter (who was quite handsome... phew...) if we could eat at the bar. He said yes, so he brought us menus afterwards. Geneviève and Maryse ordered fajitas, Sandra, natchos and I got tempted by a beef burger. We laughed so hard when we saw Sandra's natchos plate arrive!! It was enormous and Sandra's facial expression told it all! Let's specify that Sandra has a very small appetite and that seeing too much food usually makes her lose her appetite. My plate was just perfect for me and the fajitas serving was also more reasonable. I took pictures of our plates to show you what Sandra's plate looked like, it's up to you to judge!

Sandra's dinner (before) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

Sandra's natchos before eating

Sandra's dinner (after) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

Sandra's natchos after eating!

Marie-Hélène Cyr's dinner in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

My more reasonable serving... and I was no longer hungry!

We ate quietly to the sound of Bon Jovi music and Bon Jovi images while we talked about good moments in concert. For that matter, I learned that when Jon is dressed all in black, Maryse calls him her little black button... Jon's leather pants in the show video in front of us also fueled several minutes of our conversation... We looked like a bunch of women swooned on their man; it was a little unusual for me to react that way! We could have said that I was back 20 years earlier...

Sandra also specified at some point that she had tamed her bladder well and that she was proud of it, because it is true that throughout the whole weekend, she was not continuously going to the restrooms when we were together. So many images were popping in my head when she was talking about taming a bladder... I think that I was starting to be quite tired!! I also made the comment during dinner that I would fall from so high on November 9 after the last show of my tour in Montreal on November 8. My friends all agreed with the statement!

My brain was starting to be in a bad state that night. Since the beginning of the trip, I happened to forget from time to time that we were in Ontario and that we were surrounded by anglophones... That night in particular, I talked at least twice in French to the waiter! Not very good of me!

We didn't take too long to leave when we finished our dinner, because we knew that the restaurant was even crowdier than when we had arrived and we had understood that it would be a good idea to be at our seats at 7h30pm for the ceremony of Bon Jovi's induction into the Air Canada Centre hall of fame. Being the artist who had done the most shows at the Air Canada Centre (17 shows since 1999), Bon Jovi was the first artist to be inducted into that hall that night! We were all happy to be able to be part of the history of the Air Canada Centre!

When we left the Jack Astor's, we headed towards the Air Canada Centre where Maryse and Geneviève left us. They had to pick up their tickets at the fan club table before being able to go in, because they had bought regular pit tickets (without a VIP package) through the fan club for that night. Sandra and I went in the building where the Real Sports Bar & Grill was for a few moments to fix a little logistic problem before being able to go in the Air Canada Centre... We went in afterwards and we went to the restrooms, since we had forgotten about the idea of going to the restrooms at the restaurant when we couldn't spot them easily... We then went down to our seats. What a joy to be able to walk down the floor to get to the pit! I think that I couldn't be happier to show my ticket in these circumstances and have the ushers tell me: "Oh, you're in the pit! Go straight down the floor, someone will assist you there!" It's true music to my ears to hear that!

Maryse and Geneviève had tickets in pit 2 the previous night and they had confirmed to us that pit 2 in Toronto was on the left while looking towards the stage. In Montreal, usually, pit 2 is on the right... It was thus not a surprise when the pit usher indicated to us that we were in the third row right beside the entrance where we were, on the left of the stage. Anyway, the floor seat numbers in the Air Canada Centre were different from Montreal since they were simply handwritten on the ground with a white pen and in the pit, "PIT 2" and "PIT 1" were also handwritten, so we couldn't make a mistake! We had seats 15 and 16 in the third row and after asking Isabelle S. and after reading my notes again from previous shows where I had been in the pit, I was quite sure that we would have two people on our left who would separate us from the catwalk... I almost let out a scream of joy when I realized that we had the two seats beside the catwalk!! YIPPIE!! Not only was I in the closest row near the stage that I had been in the pit, but I was also beside the catwalk! Total happiness! While looking carefully at the rows in the pit in Toronto, I realized that it was a little smaller than the one in Montreal. I wonder if it's not the reason why pit tickets in Toronto are harder to get than in Montreal... Sandra also thought that the pit was smaller than in Montreal... I was thus feeling very privileged and so happy of the chance that I had had to have bought the last pair of pit tickets that had become available a few weeks before! Sandra was not disappointed at all to have paid 500$ for these tickets neither!!

Maryse and Geneviève didn't take too much time to arrive in the pit, they were in the fifth row, the two seats against the aisle as well. A little before 7h30pm, I mentioned to Sandra that I seemed to have to go to the restrooms again... I never need to go to the restrooms several times during an evening while waiting for a Bon Jovi show, but I don't know why, that night, mostly after seeing where our tickets were, I was suddenly very nervous! Sandra also had to go again. We thus got out of the pit to head towards the upper level where the nearest restrooms were according to an usher who had given us the information a little earlier. While seeing that we were heading towards the bleachers from the floor, an usher asked us what we wanted to do. Sandra asked him if there were restrooms elsewhere apart from the ones in the upper level and he said: "Of course, go down the floor and at the end, you will see restrooms... You're on the floor, no problem for you to go there!" We were happy, because usually, the restrooms on the floor are a little less crowded than those in the upper levels...

When we went in the restrooms on the floor, Sandra and I were really impressed by the difference between these restrooms and those in the upper level! They seemed really cleaner with gadgets not available in the other restrooms. Even the stall walls were going lower, giving even more intimacy to the ones in them... I made the comment to Sandra that it was almost impossible to pass each other toilet paper underneath the wall without making it touch the ground... When I tried to wash my hands at the end, I saw in front of me a sophisticated faucet system that was running water automatically when putting my hands directly underneath and that was blowing air when putting my hands apart... I was seeing this for the first time!! A two-in-one!! When Sandra came out of her stall, a woman entered and she shouted out: "My, this is some VIP restroom!!" I was relieved to see that we weren't the only ones to think that! It was the kind of comments that we heard during the time we were in the restrooms at each time a new woman was entering. All the women seemed impressed!

When we came out of the restrooms and headed towards the floor, I realized that we were exactly where our pictures with Jon had been taken the previous day! Sandra was a little skeptical, but thinking about it well, I'm sure that it was there! It's funny, I hadn't even noticed that there was a little bar there the previous day! It was weird for me to be there that night!

We went back to the pit and I still couldn't see Isabelle S. at her seat in the fourth row after the pit. After seeing her during the show, I think that I wasn't looking enough towards the center of the floor, so maybe she was there and I didn't see her. She needed to give me something that she had and which belonged to me. She had mentioned to me earlier during the day that she preferred giving it to me before the show not to drag it along all evening... Shortly after, I saw Isabelle L. arrive beside us with what Isabelle S. had to give me. I was relieved, because I admit that I didn't quite know how I would see her before the show! I had sent her a text message a little earlier and I hadn't heard from her!

Bon Jovi's banner in the Air Canada Centre during Bon Jovi pre-show in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

At around 7h45pm, a man and a woman came on the stage to make a draw of special items among the crowd to highlight the band's induction into the hall of fame. Obviously, the winners were all in the bleachers. I'm really under the impression that when there is a draw of items among a crowd in an arena, the floor tickets are not included in the draw... Anyway, the people in the winning section were very happy to get excited while both people on the stage were unveiling the winner of the section! After these two people, another man came on the stage. I didn't hear his name, but he's part of some sports association... He also gave a little speech on the band's induction. This was not really the kind of celebration that I was expecting for Bon Jovi's induction... But well, it's better than nothing!

Before the show, but I don't remember if it's before or after the speeches of the people who came on the stage anymore, Sandra talked to Catherine and her friend who were right beside us in the third row. Catherine is one of Sandra's friends from Toronto. They had gone to the unveiling of Bon Jovi's star earlier in late afternoon. They had a few pictures and they told us that it had occurred between 4h45pm and 5h15pm and it was open to the public. We were really disappointed to know that it was open to the public and that the Runaway Tours staff never told us when and where it would occur! We would have gone!! It seems like the ceremony only lasted a few minutes, the whole band was there and no speeches were given from the band members...

I recognized a lot of faces in the pit that night that I had seen since the beginning of the fan club trip, so I came to the conclusion that numerous people had decided to pay for better tickets, like Sandra, Geneviève, Maryse and I! I also saw a few familiar faces in the first row of the floor after the catwalk... Catherine's friend (sorry, I didn't ask her name despite the fact that we talked to each other several times) asked me at some point before the show: "Just to make sure... Are you going to go to the catwalk when Jon will be there?!" I knew very well what she wanted to ask me. I reassured her by saying that Sandra (who had the seat near the aisle) was a true gazelle when came the time to go to the catwalk and that when I would see her leave, I would get out of the row as well! She seemed very relieved to learn that we would be quick to leave the row! It's better to clear that up at the beginning!!

Sandra made me notice that two women of a certain age in the first row, who were part of the fan club trip, had a sign on which it was written that it was their 35th Bon Jovi show of the current tour! Wow, this is quite a number of shows!! I would have bet 20$ that they were from Europe, I don't know why... I also saw a woman hold up a sign while coming closer to the front of the floor before the pit earlier which said that she had been with Bon Jovi for 29 years and the sign displayed the date of her first Bon Jovi concert, in March 1984!! Phew!!

A woman was quietly talking to another woman in the pit near us, between the catwalk and Sandra's seat. I wondered why they were there instead of being at their seats. I understood why when a security guard came to say to one of the women that she now needed to go back to her seat. She then left the pit! Sandra and I thought it was unacceptable for a woman who didn't have a pit ticket to have ended up there so easily! In Montreal, we usually have to show our pit ticket to about 5 people before being able to go in there! Security was quite permissive! It's not the only incident about security being too permissive that I heard during the evening. To my opinion, security's behavior left a lot to be desired!

I prepared my things at around 8hpm: take out my camera to put it around my neck, take off my scarf and my cardigan, take out my Bed Of Roses banner from my purse, hang my purse to the seat for it to hang underneath the seat without touching the ground... I decided to keep my Runaway Tours VIP badge around my neck to show the band that I was part of the fan club trip, but I put it between my tank top and my chest... in my cleavage, to avoid having it disturb me too much! I was now ready!! Like all the reporters who invaded the back of the pit a few minutes before the show. The woman behind me was worried and she went to get informed to an employee of the Air Canada Centre to find out who were all these people! I heard him say that they were reporters and they would be there for the first two songs only... Still, there were a lot of them with their camera!!

At around 8h15pm, the clock ticks of the previous night were heard once more and the excitement increased at once in the pit. We could see people walk underneath the stage, since we were the first seats on the edge of the row and we were really very close to the stage. The lights went off in the Air Canada Centre shortly after the beginning of the AC/DC song called Hells Bells, triggering a wave of screams a little louder than the previous night and it was weird, because in the third row of the pit, we were already in the lights of the spotlights on the stage and I barely noticed that the lights in the amphitheater were off! In fact, I had to turn around to realize it! We saw all the band members appear one after the other while the spotlights were making plays of light around Jon's microphone stand at the front of the stage.

Jon arrived after the first notes of That's What The Water Made Me were heard. I didn't realize it at first, because I wasn't expecting to hear another song than this one, but I rarely went to two Bon Jovi shows in two nights that started with the same song... I think that I was too flabbergasted to see Jon arrive with his darn Captain America vest once more to notice it immediately!!! I had made the comment the previous day and earlier in the evening that we should be OK since he had worn this vest the previous night! I'm a little tired of seeing his vest and usually, he rarely wears the same vest from one night to another. I know that he wore it often during this tour... Fortunately, he changes his undershirt or shirt underneath!

The list of songs that they played that night was:


This show was thus composed of 26 songs spread over a time span from 8h15pm to 11h55pm; it was a show that was way better! The only deception is the fact that the list of songs was practically an exact copy of the show of the previous night. After noticing that Jon usually changes about 30% of the songs from one night to another when the band does two shows in two nights in the same city, I wondered what had pushed him to take exactly the same list or almost, apart from a few songs during the encores...

For statistics lovers, I took 1641 pictures (including the pictures during the dinner, during the induction ceremonies before the show and the pictures of the star at the hall of fame after the show) and I made 13 videos (in fact, I made 14 of them, but you will understand why I say 13 a little later in the review...) I know that I took a lot fewer pictures than previous shows in Montreal, but for an unknown reason to us, it's very hard taking beautiful pictures during this tour... Jon has a nice complexion on the stage, but as soon as I put my camera on him and I take a picture of him, his face turns out as white as a sheet! Same thing for the videos... Have they found a way to make plays of light that ruin our pictures or what?? Anyway, it's in part why I have fewer pictures... I also decided at the beginning of the evening to enjoy the show as much as possible by giving everything that I had and when I have this attitude, I usually take fewer pictures! I decided to share with you my best pictures of that evening, they are still better than those from the previous night.

I don't remember anymore if it's during That's What The Water Made Me or You Give Love A Bad Name, but I remember that I turned around right on time to see a photographer from the media tell a woman to lower her arms, because he wasn't able to take pictures... The woman made him quite a face while raising her arms in the air as if she were telling him: "Come on, you're not serious, I hope?!! I'm at a Bon Jovi show, you will certainly not ask me to lower my arms!!" He told her that it was only for the first two songs, but when I turned to face the stage, I had the feeling that the woman would not cooperate at all with the photographer! If I had thought faster, I would have raised my arms as well on purpose!

Before starting You Give Love A Bad Name, Jon talked to the crowd to say that the band was giving their fourth show of the Because We Can tour in Toronto that night and that it was their 17th show at the Air Canada Centre. The crowd vividly reacted when he said that! He pointed out that he would not talk a lot during the show, because as he said: "I got some singing to do..."

I don't get tired from hearing Raise Your Hands and taking a wicked pleasure in raising my hands in the air at each "Raise Your Hands"! Deep down, it would have been a good thing that they would have started the show with this song to make the photographers mad at the back of the pit! For that matter, I don't remember when exactly anymore, but I saw a line of reporters leave the pit after exactly one song or two. I told myself: "Good riddance!" I imagine that the woman behind me said the same thing as well!

I have a few clear little memories of the first songs that night, but generally, I don't remember much... I think that I was too impressed by the fact that I was really very close to the stage to think about anything else! I know that I was singing and participating a lot, but I don't remember the details that Jon did or said at all! I must believe that Ti-pit was working like crazy and it told me to flip the switch off so it could go to sleep a little during the show... Poor it, I have to have little to remember in the next few days to give it a little break before the show in Montreal!!

During It's My Life, I looked at Phil who was almost in front of me and he was doing the characteristic sounds that Richie usually does with his mouth during the song, so I started making a video of him. I also thought about my father during this song, once again. Though it's not a song that my father particularly liked, the lyrics always remind me that we need to live while we're alive and that's exactly how I felt that night. I had only one goal: enjoy it to the fullest, no matter if I had a hard time walking or talking the next morning... I knew that I would have time to recuperate before the show in Montreal the next Friday! I was still filming when I saw Jon grab his microphone and take it off his microphone stand to head towards us. I had the time to stop filming right on time to see him arrive directly in front of me and I'm pretty sure that he saw my tank top, because he then looked at me in the eyes for a second or two! I was already satisfied about him doing that and I wondered if he remembered the request that I had made to him the previous day!!

Throughout the evening, I switched between singing, dancing and jumping, taking pictures and making videos. I must admit that I had a little hard time with my videos, because I was often zooming to ensure to see every line on Jon's face (!!) and sometimes, when he went out of my sight because of his moving on the stage, I had a very hard time finding him again without looking on the stage to know where he was!!

When Jon arrived at the part of What About Now where he sings a lot of lyrics in a short period of time ("The leaves fall like reasons that drift through the seasons..."), I started singing without any difficulties! Usually, when I listen to this song in my car, I have a very hard time singing this part of the song. That night (and even the previous night!), I had no difficulties and it seemed so easy to me to sing! I told myself that it took me to be in front of Jon to be able to rid myself of the difficulties about this song and I couldn't believe that I had so much trouble in the past!

When We Got It Going On started, I once again thought about my two-year-old son who adores this song and I told myself that I would make a video of a small part of it, even if I knew quite well that Sandra would make a video of the whole song, to show him that I was with those who play it for real... I cannot wait to see if he will react differently when seeing my video! Just like the previous night, Jon went on the columns of the spotlights at the back of the stage to go see the people in the bleachers behind the stage, triggering the crowd to go crazy in these sections of the arena. I didn't see the moment, but it seems like there was a woman in her underwear (or wearing a bikini?) in the bleachers and the guys around her had taken off their shirt to accompany her. It seems like Jon found it funny to see them like this!

I had a lot of room to dance that night, because Sandra was completely between the catwalk and her seat and nobody came to warn her during the evening that she had to go back to her seat. She could position herself as she wanted to take pictures and make videos. Good for all of us! It was very different from the previous night! I even saw Geneviève who was completely behind her seat to dance (there were no seats behind her up to the catwalk) and Maryse who had stayed in the row, but she had a lot of room to move! And even if I still had a tall man in an angle from me, the stage was high enough compared to me that I could see very well, apart when the man was raising his arms; I could not get away from a blocked view! Still, it was way better than the previous night!

When Keep The Faith started, I didn't realize that it was the last song before the part at the catwalk right away. A few seconds later, I turned towards Sandra quickly to make a sign with my head that meant: "Do we try to go to the catwalk right now?!" She understood fast what I meant while looking at me in the eyes (you know, when you are under the impression that the person in front of you just saw a light bulb above her head? That's the expression that Sandra made when I made a sign with my head) and she started walking fast towards the back of the pit near the catwalk. I looked at my right neighbor, Catherine's friend, and she seemed impatient to get out as well, so I nodded yes with my head and I took my Bed Of Roses banner before getting out of the row quickly. The whole time that I walked towards the back of the pit, I told myself: "We will be asked to go back to our seats, we will be asked to go back to our seats... Will we be asked to go back to our seats?" I let Catherine's friend pass in front of me, I don't quite know why. I settled myself comfortably at the catwalk a little farther from the middle, where Maryse and Geneviève's seats were and I could not believe that security was letting us do that! The song had barely started!!

From where I was, I tried to take a few pictures of Jon with his maracas once again, while I was waiting for the song to end! My back was against the catwalk and I had a lot of room to move around! Nobody was pushing me and strangely, there were not many people at the back of the pit, even towards the end of the song when Jon disappeared from the stage. A man in the fifth row of the pit looked at me really strangely when he turned around and saw that there were a few women at the catwalk. I was sure that he would tell me to go away, because it was his place, but no, he just got out of the row and he went to the catwalk a little farther (closer to my seat in reality). I turned around to face the crowd on the floor when Jon disappeared from the stage to protect myself if I had to face people who lusted after my spot. I realized that the black sheet which serves as a wall at the catwalk is quite dense, because when I put my knees in it while bending my knees, I saw that they were getting underneath the catwalk quite easily, but there was still resistance. I had then both my forearms leaned against the catwalk and my hands were calmly on it as well... Hum, what a nice feeling to end up there! Nobody pushed me, nobody came to tell us to go away, it was just too good to be true!! I also told myself that I would have enough space to jump if I ever heard the first notes of Bed Of Roses and I was still not too far away from the middle of the catwalk to catch Jon's glance. In short, I was ready!

Jon arrived as he usually does from the other side of the pit and he climbed the little staircase before appearing on the catwalk. When the lights turned on, most of the people in the Air Canada Centre started screaming. Jon said that they would now play a song from the new album that was called Amen. At that moment, I seriously doubted that I would hear Bed Of Roses, because the list of songs played was too identical to the previous night's! A woman in the first row of the floor after the catwalk had a sign that was mentioning that it was her 40th birthday and that she wanted a kiss from Jon. He contented to read her sign and tell her: "Happy birthday!" while pointing at her. The woman must have been quite disappointed!

I saw Rosy who was a few rows away from the barricade after the catwalk; I was almost in front of her! I saw that she was looking in my direction, so I waved at her to drag her attention. When she recognized me, we smiled at each other and she waved back at me. She seemed to think it was funny that we were seeing each other that night! Immediately after, I saw that Isabelle S. was at the barricade in the first row of the floor a little more towards the middle than Rosy. I then wondered what she was doing there, because she had told me that she was in the fourth row of the floor... She had a sign on which it was written "Thank you for making my life amazing with your music", the same sentence that she had told Jon the previous day.

Jon's microphone was crackling a lot when he arrived at the catwalk to sing Amen while the other band members stayed on the main stage. We could have said that each time he was getting closer, it was crackling a little and when he started singing, it would go back to normal. However, it was really annoying and I couldn't believe that Jon wasn't noticing neither weren't the people who could fix the problem!

Right before Someday I'll Be Saturday Night, Jon once again invited David, Tico and Bobby to come join him at the catwalk. I didn't see David arrive, because I was already turned towards the catwalk and I was then looking on my right to see Tico and Bobby arrive. I really didn't have anyone who wanted to climb on me like when Jon walks near us on the catwalk, so I simply held my left hand in the air and I waited a few seconds. Tico was coming while touching the hand of almost everyone who was against the catwalk and he touched my hand when he arrived in front of me while looking at me! I was quite happy, even if he wears gloves to avoid having his drum sticks slip through his hands and I didn't touch his bare hand. I was also able to feel Bobby's hand touch mine right after. I told myself afterwards that it had been so easy to touch them, it was almost too easy!

Right before Diamond Ring, Jon's microphone crackled once more and the sound that it made was really loud. Jon then turned sideways while looking at the band members and he asked them: "Do you hear anything?!" The other band members didn't seem to know what he was talking about... As a joke, he continued: "I'm hearing things... I'm seeing things... I SEE 20 000 PEOPLE!!" while taking his head in both his hands and turning on himself as if he were doing the gesture of a man who goes crazy hearing voices and seeing people who don't exist. It was so funny!! The crowd's reaction was also immediate: a general and genuine burst of laughter!

Geneviève screamed when she heard that the band was going to play Diamond Ring, because it's one of her favorite songs. Personally, I would have preferred hearing something else, but well, I was at the catwalk, Jon had just made me laugh, I had no worries in life at this precise moment! She made me realize at some point that Hugh was alone on the stage... While turning around towards the stage, I quite saw that it was true! But where was Phil? Hugh seemed so alone on the main stage like this, he was almost pitiful!

During Diamond Ring, I was still smiling from the joke that Jon had said right before starting the song and I told myself that I had to find a way to remember it! Not having my iPhone with me, neither a pen nor paper, the only way that I had to take notes was to make a video in which I would talk in the microphone of my camera to say what I wanted to remember! I don't see anything in my video, but the sound of my voice is very clear and that tip worked like a charm! Ti-pit had a lot of tricks up its sleeve to remember things that didn't fit in its note pad anymore!

A man was filming on the other side of the catwalk, between the catwalk and the first row of the floor. I thought it was very strange, because usually, cameras that make videos in that area are on posts which go around during the show. I turned around at some point towards the man and I wondered if he were making a video of me, because the lens of his camera was really pointed at me!

At some point, I realized that my hand was calmly on the catwalk (and I had started hitting the catwalk with my open hand to follow the beat of a song, I don't remember which one anymore, at the same time as some people near me) and I decided to take a picture of it to immortalize the moment that I was living! In the meantime, Geneviève and Maryse got their picture taken in turn with the band in the background. When the woman on my right saw me take a picture of my hand, she told me: "Oh my, you're taking a picture of your hand on the catwalk! Haha!" She then asked me if I wanted her to take a picture of me with the band in the background. I accepted with pleasure and I gave her my camera the time she took the picture. She was really nice! I remember that she apologized at some point, because she had hit me a little and I told her that there were no worries with a big smile! I looked at her a few times when we were at the catwalk and she seemed as happy as me to be there!

Marie-Hélène Cyr's hand on the catwalk at the Bon Jovi show at the Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Canada (November 2, 2013)

Marie-Hélène Cyr's hand on the catwalk

Marie-Hélène Cyr at the Bon Jovi show at the Air Canada Centre, Toronto, Canada (November 2, 2013)

Marie-Hélène Cyr at the catwalk

After Diamond Ring, all the band members except Jon returned to the stage. I was getting ready to touch Tico's hand once again when I heard Geneviève arrive near me and tell me: "Hey, it's my turn to touch Tico!" I nodded at her and I stepped away on the side to give her enough space to go to the catwalk and I told her: "Of course, go ahead!" She touched his hand and she seemed quite happy!

Jon started singing Bruce Springsteen's Fire without any visible reason or I don't remember what pushed him to do that anymore! After the song, he started looking at the crowd on the floor in front of him and a fan caught his eyes with a sheet which seemed to be a poster of him. He then told her: "Did you bring your baby pictures with you? You got baby pictures of me too? This is my baby picture?" and intrigued, he bended forward to see an old picture of him from the 1980s that people made circulate forward up to the catwalk so Jon could take the poster in his hands. He took the poster, he put it against his face for a few seconds so people could see the difference, he folded the page of the magazine and he took the page that was now folded away from his face while stretching his arms like an older person who has a hard time seeing from close (it was weird seeing him do that!) and he said while smiling: "I was even prettier than Justin Bieber!" He then gave the poster back to someone in the crowd. He finally said: "Thank you... Just like a fine wine, baby, I just keep on getting better!" before starting playing the beginning of (You Want To) Make A Memory at the guitar. From this moment, my hopes to hear Bed Of Roses had completely vanished! I had taken my Bed Of Roses banner in my hands just in case after Amen and at the moment, I folded it again and I put it so it would hang from my pants. I knew well that I would not use it!

Born To Be My Baby deserved the crowd's cheers once again, just like the previous night and I took the opportunity at the end to sing at the top of my lungs with the other band members.

When Who Says You Can't Go Home started, I turned around towards Maryse and Geneviève who were already holding up their sign to sing with Jon. But the thing is that I saw several signs of that kind go up at the same time and Jon noticed that as well by saying something like: "They are about 20 of them who would like to sing with me!!" He then shouted out: "Matt, give me something!" We then saw Matt arrive in the crowd in the pit to choose fans with whom Jon would sing. Matt didn't seem to know which one to choose and Jon was continuing to look at the crowd and he made the following comment at some point: "You just want to dance, you don't want to sing! I can't dance, you guys know it by now..." while pretending to dance poorly. He then continued: "Singers, singers, singers!" Matt was often looking at Jon and he seemed to be a little confused about what Jon had in mind. Finally, Jon pointed at a group of women and he told Matt: "The six of them!" and he pointed at somebody else and he said: "And I want that hockey jersey too!" He then took off his leather vest, he put it on the ground, he put his acoustic guitar between his knees and he pointed at the person who had the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey jersey so she could throw it on the stage. He caught it and put it on! The crowd vividly reacted by seeing Jon in such a jersey! People were screaming so loud around me that I could not hear what Jon said once he put the jersey on.

Jon signaled the women whom he had chosen and a few seconds later, they arrived from the back of the stage, probably by the staircase that the band uses when they arrive on the stage. They were five who were heading towards Jon and he shouted out: "Hello! Ladies!" While the women were getting closer to Jon, Matt arrived on the stage at full throttle to go get the leather vest that Jon had put at his feet to bring it backstage. Jon gave kisses on the women's cheeks before starting to make them practice singing the "It's alright". He said: "We're gonna have a little bit of an audition... It's gonna be like Canadian Bon Jovi idol. You make the grade or you're outta here!" People vividly reacted and the women seemed a little nervous to have ended up on the stage! Jon saw that one of the women was telling him something and he shouted out: "Now, she's making demands... Can I have some water?" while imitating her. It was really funny! He then coolly went to get a bottle of water which was on the stage and he gave it to her so she could take a sip, something that she did with pleasure while putting the bottle of water back where it belonged afterwards, near Tico's drums! Jon then asked her, as a joke: "Are you ready now, Paula Abdul??!!" The crowd bursted into laughter!

Jon then made two of the women sing the "It's alright" and one of the two women had to lift herself up on the tip of her feet to reach the microphone. He then imitated her jokingly and he lowered his microphone so she could be more comfortable. At the third "It's alright", the women barely repeated the "It's alright" using a very weak voice... Jon quickly said: "Stay with me, stay with me, stay with me..." as if he were afraid that one or both women would faint. He then turned around to make the other three women who were on the stage sing. After a few "It's alright", he said: "It ain't as easy as it looks, does it?" while stroking his chest slightly with his fingertips of both hands... He mumbled something else and he said: "Pick up a microphone, everybody's gonna sing the background vocals and I'll be singing in the middle!" The women headed towards Bobby's and Phil's microphones. I must say that they seemed very at ease around Bobby's and Phil's microphones, but we could not hear them very loud, except when Phil and Bobby decided to come do the "It's alright" with them... I saw that one of the women asked Bobby if the microphone was on at first because she couldn't hear herself sing. The man in front of me was holding up a Spanish flag at each "It's alright" and I couldn't see anything, so I had to start filming at arm's length at some point. I turned around towards Sandra and I quickly asked her if I were hiding someone. She reassured me immediately by telling me that there was really nobody behind me, so my conscience was at peace filming that way!

At the end of the song, Jon invited the five women to come join him at the main microphone to end the song and after the last notes, the women disappeared from where they had come. Jon then shouted out: "That was fun! If I didn't have my job, I sure would want it!" He then took off the hockey jersey that he was wearing before continuing the show with I'll Sleep When I'm Dead which was played without any rock classic in the middle.

The beginning of Bad Medicine triggered a wave of screams in the crowd. I was singing and dancing when Catherine's friend looked at me while Jon was heading towards us while singing. I saw in her eyes a big question mark and instinctively, I looked on my left to see that Sandra had gotten out of the row. A little light bulb went on in my head: "Of course, wake up!! Jon came on the catwalk yesterday during Bad Medicine!" I got out of the row leaping (maybe I didn't leap, but I was under the impression that I did!) while heading quickly towards the catwalk to arrive before someone took my spot at the catwalk. I was lucky, because several people gathered behind me, while Jon was really close to the little bridge that linked the main stage to the catwalk. I held out my left hand while waiting for Jon and when he put one foot on the catwalk, I stretched my body as much as possible to be certain to be able to have him hit my hand! However, he decided not to touch anyone on our side and he turned towards the crowd in the bleachers instead. He was there, his back on us, I could almost touch his butt, he was so close, but I was still a little too far away from him! He finally turned around, but he didn't seem to want to touch people's hand. I then stretched even more to my left, because Jon had now passed where I was and while he started walking towards the rest of the catwalk, I barely touched one of his fingers from his left hand! I was happy to have had a contact with him, because nobody in the area had some from what I can remember! I started making a video of Jon's walk on the catwalk to give memories to people he would touch, but I felt a little weird staying at the catwalk while everyone had returned to their seat afterwards... I then decided to continue filming while I was heading a little blindly towards my seat... My video is not that great, because of my blind walk when not wanting to look away from Jon and while keeping Jon in the lens of my camera!!

I was quite happy to hear Pretty Woman during Bad Medicine. I really like this song in concert! Jon made his singing exercises for Shout, but he didn't sing it that night...

The band disappeared afterwards to go get ready for the encores. We could see people walk underneath the stage once more and the same rock music from the previous night was heard after several seconds of screams from the crowd. The band members came back almost at the same time, except for Jon obviously, who arrived after the others. The man who takes care of Phil's guitars quickly came to stick a sheet on the ground near his microphone. I wondered what he was doing there; was there a last minute change to the set list? Shortly after, I saw a spotlight turn on on David and the first notes that he played left no doubts: they would play Dry County! It never crossed my mind, but Geneviève noticed that Phil was relying a lot on the sheet that had been put on the stage at the beginning of this song; it probably contained the chords to play! I decided to make a video of the solo of this song because I had never taken the time to make a video of Phil and also because this song contains a solo that is quite impressive and long and I wanted to have the proof that there weren't a lot of differences between the way Richie and Phil play. Obviously, I was not disappointed at all of Phil and the solo that he did! It was simply phenomenal that he succeeded with so much accuracy! I also noticed that Phil threw his guitar pick in the pit at some point and he took another pick which was on his microphone stand quite quickly not to miss too many notes. I was seeing him do that for the first time!

Jon made another beautiful speech before Wanted Dead Or Alive before asking us to turn on our cellular phones and our cameras. Here is in short what he said: "You've been here through the good years and the bad years and the good years again, this pulled us through. It is just not me, and it's just not the men up here on the stage, whether it be Tico, or Dave, Phil, Bobby, Hugh, Richie or Alec (he pointed towards the crowd to say "Richie or Alec" since they were not on the stage), they're out there, they all support the same dream, but you supported it with me too! So tonight, when I was told that they were gonna hang the banner up top, forever, or at least until they replace it with the Leafs Stanley cup banner, I'll keep it warm, and I want to thank everybody at the ACC, MLSE, for making it happen. 17 nights in this building so far... so far! And in the building of this damn town that I love so much." When he asked us to take out our cellular phones and our cameras, I took out my iPhone, I found an application which was shining a light, but I told myself that I had to find another way to light it better than that for Montreal, because the light was really weak compared to the other lights of other cellular phones in the Air Canada Centre! The light effect in the crowd was really well done; it seems like by doing that, the crowd becomes calm and serene, it's hard to explain what I felt both nights by seeing the crowd in the bleachers... The moment was simply solemn. Jon asked us again to sing the first verse, a thing that we executed with pleasure.

I didn't need to scream as much as the previous night during Have A Nice Day. It made me feel good, but I still sang at the top of my lungs to blow off the rest of the steam that I had inside. I was quite relaxed and for one of the rare times in my life in the last years, I no longer felt muscular tensions anymore in my upper back because of stress. Let's say that my whole upper body was also hurting, but it's a minor detail, my back didn't hurt anymore because of stress! I also think that it's during this song that I raised my right hand in the air and when I lowered it, one of my finger violently hit the metal back of the chair in front of me! (I hadn't realized that I was so close to that chair!) It hurt so bad, I was shaking my finger and my pain showed in my face expression! Phil saw me and he seemed to wonder what had happened to me!

For that matter, I was under the impression several times during the show that Phil was looking at all of us one after the other and that he was interacting with most of us. A woman in the row behind me had a piece of carton on which the words "Thank you" were written and I remember during the encores that Phil made her a nice smile at some point and when I turned around to see whom he was doing that to, I saw the woman hold her carton in the air and when he saw it, he made her an even bigger smile! He seems really nice, that Phil! And he is Canadian on top of it!!

Jon started Livin' On A Prayer in an acoustic way like the previous night, triggering another wave of screams in the Air Canada Centre. I sang so loud during Livin' On A Prayer; it's now a tradition for me to sing as loud to let out all the energy that I have left in my body. I often get nauseous and my belly hurts because of the singing. I'm sure that I have a vein coming out of my forehead in these moments! The show was coming to an end and still, I wasn't under the impression that the band members were that tired.

During the final bow, several people held up signs, several of them were asking the band to play In These Arms, I also saw signs for These Days and Always. I also saw Geneviève who was hold up her famous sign "Stay just a little bit longer" at arm's length behind me. Jon didn't take off his ear plugs and he quickly pretended to leave, while turning around at the same time towards us. We knew quite well that this time, we would get more encores! Jon put his back to the crowd, but since I could see the stage from the side since the beginning of the show, I clearly saw what gestures he made to the other band members. He showed two fingers of his hand to designate that they would play two more songs. I saw him say "In These Arms" from the way his lips moved and then, he started playing drums in the air while looking at Tico. I was quite wondering what he was trying to mime!

The crowd reacted very well to the beginning of In These Arms; several women in the pit wanted it and we got it! I love this song so much in concert! At the beginning of the song, Jon clapped his hands to the beat of the song and I was able to hear his claps without them being amplified in his microphone! I then realized beyond any doubts how close I was to hear Jon without his microphone!

When the first hits on the drums were heard, I immediately recognized Always and I realized what Jon had mimed to Tico a few minutes before! I was really happy to hear Always, for a reason that I still ignore today. It was the cherry on the sundae! Well, I would have certainly loved to hear Bed Of Roses during at least one of the two nights in Toronto, but from where I was, I was just happy that the band was still on the stage! During the song, I had Ti-pit who wanted me to take pictures for it to remember the last moments with my idols in Toronto and I had a little angel on my shoulder telling me: "Stop, let your camera around your neck without turning it on, just savor the moment, do not spoil it by filming or by taking pictures!" I had to confront my two internal beasts and finally, the angel won. I let my camera well comfortably around my neck... At some point during the song, I felt a strong emotion leave my guts and go up to the surface. At the same time, I thought about my father and I started listening to the lyrics of the chorus a little more carefully than usual ("And I will love you always, baby, and I'll be there forever and a day, always..."). It didn't take me more to have my eyes filled up with tears! It was the first time that I was so emotional during Always and at each time I was concentrating on Jon, I was thinking about my father once again and my eyes would fill up with tears... I was hoping that at least one band member could see and understand how much their music does me good and still moves me as much after 20 years!

The band took a final bow after Always before leaving the stage for good. The lights turned back on quite quickly in the room and Catherine's friend told me that we were lucky, because we still had the show in Montreal before the end of the tour. I concluded that she wasn't coming to Montreal, but Sandra had told me that Catherine would be there... While I was gathering my things, I saw Sandra walk rapidly towards the stage. A man had just brought set lists to distribute them. As usual, she was able to get a copy! I took a picture of it to be able to have an easy access to the list of songs played. By looking at it quickly, I noticed that they had planned to play Captain Crash And The Beauty Queen From Mars instead of Dry County at the beginning of the encores and that there were no "audibles", that is a short list of songs to play if the crowd is good. It's to say that In These Arms and Always weren't planned at all!

A security guard quickly came to see us to tell us that we had to evacuate the pit as soon as possible, because they needed to dismantle everything that was on the floor. We obeyed, with still having a little pinch in the heart when I left the pit... I saw that Isabelle S. was returning to her seat when we passed by. We headed towards the upper level where we could go outside. However, from the information received during the evening, we wanted to go see Bon Jovi's star which was supposedly right inside the Air Canada Centre gallery. When I arrived near the star which was positioned vertically on a concrete column near the ticket office, I realized that it was on the same column that I had seen in the morning and where people were busy when I had gone to get my tickets! After knowing that this is what I had seen, I would have probably been able to see it before everyone!! Sandra and I were able to take a picture of the star among the crowd gathered around the concrete column and we left the Air Canada Centre afterwards to head towards the hotel.

Bon Jovi's star at the Air Canada Centre hall of fame in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 2, 2013)

When I got into my hotel room, I didn't take off my coat immediately, I don't remember why anymore. I turned the mini-laptop on with the idea of getting to the part on our pictures with Jon in my review before going to bed and while I was waiting for it to be ready, I checked my emails on my iPhone. Maryse had already sent us an email to tell us that the pictures of us with Jon were available on Facebook, because her mother had sent her an email during the evening to tell her that her pictures with Jon were beautiful.

I was then tired and my brain wasn't working at full speed, because it seems to me that it took me time to find the Runaway Tours page to go see the pictures! It's a weird feeling to look quickly at the pictures in thumbnails and try to find myself among the 350 or so pictures that were in the photo album with Jon in Toronto. I must admit that it was quite stressing not knowing what my pictures looked like! I finally spotted my pictures and I looked at them one after the other. I had the huge joy to realize that Jon was making a big smile on both pictures and me too! I had dreamed that one day, I would have a picture like this with my idol, smiling with his mouth and his eyes. I was satisfied and paralyzed on the chair on which I was sitting down. I was unable to do anything else but look at my pictures and mostly the second one which was most particularly a success. The only downside: the message on my tank top showed almost completely! I wanted to hide the message with my scarf, I quite failed! However, I was telling myself that I preferred seeing my message than not have Jon smile! I stayed an hour seated with my coat on looking at my pictures and writing statuses on Facebook; I rarely add statuses on my profile!! I couldn't believe that Jon had smiled so much! I was as happy for Isabelle S., Rosy, Maryse, Geneviève, Sandra and Carole who all had at least one very nice picture with Jon who was making his biggest smile. Like Maryse wrote afterwards, with Jon's average at the bat this year (that is the number quite limited of pictures on which he makes his biggest smile during the official photo ops), we hit the grand slam! Here are the best pictures of the girls with whom I lived this fan club trip:

Jon Bon Jovi and Sandra in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Jon Bon Jovi and Sandra

Maryse and Jon Bon Jovi in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Maryse and Jon Bon Jovi

Geneviève and Jon Bon Jovi in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Geneviève and Jon Bon Jovi

Jon Bon Jovi and Carole in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Jon Bon Jovi and Carole

Jon Bon Jovi and Rosy in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Jon Bon Jovi and Rosy

Jon Bon Jovi and Isabelle S. in Toronto, Ontario, Canada (November 1, 2013)

Jon Bon Jovi and Isabelle S.

It must have been 1h30am in the morning when I was able to get up of my chair... I went to take a shower, I got ready to go to bed and I went to bed at around 2ham in the morning, while wondering how I would sleep after knowing how beautiful my pictures were!

Returning back home

I slept very badly during the night from Saturday to Sunday and I woke up early. We had turned the clock back during the night and despite the fact that I could have slept one extra hour, I was way too happy of my pictures to sleep too long! I had to look at them again and again!

I decided to get out of bed at around 7h30am and after eating a granola bar (I was really tired of eating granola bars, because they were the only snacks that I had brought with me and I had eaten 7 of them since Thursday afternoon), I decided to go outside to take pictures of the hotel to have memories before leaving. When I came back to the lobby, I saw Isabelle L. who was in all likelihood waiting for a coffee at the little restaurant of the lobby. She recognized me when I arrived near her and she told me that she had lost her voice. I told her that she was the first person whom I was talking to that morning, so I didn't know if I still had my voice. To my great surprise, my voice was intact! I told her that I had seen her In These Arms sign the previous night and she told me that she had seen our pictures with Jon. She seemed happy for us.

At around 8h30am, I called Sandra in her room, because she had asked me to call her at that time just in case she wouldn't hear her clock like the Friday morning where she had woken up at 11h40am! She still seemed asleep, but she had heard her clock that time and she was still taking it easy in her bed when I called her in her room and I told her: "Sandra, it's Marie-Hélène... It's your wake-up call..." We had said that we would meet on our floor at around 10ham to be able to walk to the train station, register our luggage, go get ourselves something to eat and go in the waiting line before our boarding which would occur half an hour before the departure time, that is 11h35am. I finished packing and I continued to write my review before leaving the hotel.

Maryse, Geneviève, Carole and I went down in the lobby to check out at 10ham. Sandra followed us a few minutes later, because she was not quite ready when Geneviève and Maryse went to knock on our hotel room doors. We left the hotel to head towards Union Station right beside the Air Canada Centre. We went to register our suitcases except Carole who only had two medium bags. Sandra went to get coffee at Tim Hortons and a bagel at another restaurant while Maryse, Geneviève and I went to get a sandwich and other snacks at a restaurant called Baguette if I remember well. It cost me 14$ for a turkey sandwich, a bottle of strawberry and banana smoothie and a piece of banana bread! Ouch!

When we went up to the level where the boarding was going to occur, we realized that there was now a line that was still quite long of people who were waiting to get on the train... We went at the end of the line, knowing quite well that Carole was probably completely at the front. We didn't want to piss off the people behind her, so we decided not to go join her. We told ourselves that we would find her again once on the train. Since I had to face the direction of the train, that Geneviève still had a weak stomach and that Maryse had to feed herself with Gravol caplets before leaving and stay in her bubble while listening to music with sunglasses on her eyes not to get too nauseous, we were 3 out of 5 who had to sit facing the direction of the train. We thus knew that we couldn't all sit down together where there were four seats two in front of the other two like when we left.

When we got to the platform to get on the railroad car at around 11h05am, we noticed that the woman working for VIA Rail who was greeting us aboard was the same as the Thursday morning when we had left Montreal! What a coincidence! Once on the train, we saw that Carole had sit down on one of the reserved seats for groups of 3 or 4. We told her that we had to be near the restrooms because of Maryse's nausea and that we needed to sit down separately anyway to face the direction of the train. We invited her to follow us at the back, but she decided to stay there, because she was tired and wanted to sleep...

I sat down with Sandra and Geneviève and Maryse sat down together. Sandra mentioned to me that she was proud of herself, because she had only smoked about thirty cigarettes since our departure on Thursday morning! We were now mid-day Sunday! Geneviève noticed that the "time" displayed in our car was 6006. It's funny, we were three days later than when we left and the two first numbers of the car number (5706 and 6006) were different by 3... However, Geneviève didn't make a reference to the "time" of the car often during the ride. The woman who had greeted us was very surprised to know that we weren't sitting one in front of the others... We explained to her the reason why we had decided to sit that way and she understood why we could not sit on the seats reserved for groups... We also saw Stéphane Tremblay, the man who had shared his iPhone connection to access the internet in the train when we left for Toronto; he was in the same railroad car as us! Geneviève, who has a hard time remembering people's names, said hello to him while calling him by his name when he passed beside us. He seemed amused that Geneviève recognized him and mostly, that she could remember his name! He asked us if we had enjoyed "the show", not knowing that we had two shows!

We were a lot less talkative than when we left and it was OK. We were so tired that we all took the opportunity to get some rest. I continued to write my show review, Sandra spent most of her time looking at the pictures with Jon on Facebook, Geneviève reframed her pictures using Photoshop and Maryse slept most of the time. My eyes were so heavy at some point, we could have said that I had concrete on my eyelids which was closing my eyes unwillingly. It was a very bumpier ride in the train than when we had left, it was very tiring!

However, I cannot say that we didn't have more conversations about cracks: Maryse who sat down on her earphones and who couldn't find them anymore, Sandra's hair separation that Geneviève was looking at while standing up when she was stretching her legs, Geneviève's allusion to "put the whole family on the balcony" for the show in Montreal on the next Friday, etc. I would have never thought that women could talk about cracks as much as that!

Sandra told me at some point: "You remember that I had seats 1 and 2 in my cart when we bought our tickets for Montreal, don't you?!" Indeed, we had chosen to buy the tickets in the fourth row that I had in my cart, being seats 5 and 6 which were 400$US each instead of taking hers in the same row, but seats 1 and 2 (the first seats near the central aisle) which were 900$US each... We had made that choice, because we were convinced that there would be two shows in Montreal... We have to live with our choices in life! She also asked me if I had liked my first girls road trip and I answered that it was very different with girls than with my husband! She agreed with me; we had done nothing wrong, but we had had a lot of fun nonetheless!

During the ride, I made arrangements with Martin so he could come pick us up, Sandra and I, at Montreal Central Station, accompanied by my son.

I had called Martin a few minutes before arriving to tell him that we were on time, that is 4h57pm. I talked to my son for a few seconds and when I heard his voice, I realized that I was missing him a little! When I got up the stairs at the train station, Martin immediately came to see us with my son in his arms. My son wanted to walk while holding my hand and not Martin's; I think that he had missed me a little as well! We said goodbye to Carole who had to take a connection and we headed towards the luggage belt to get our suitcases. Geneviève's suitcase was once again the last one to arrive. We all kissed each other on the cheeks and Geneviève told us: "Hey! See you Friday!!" I then realized that indeed, we would start that joyful game again the following Friday already! At that precise moment, I would have left again for other shows instead of going back home! It was hard for me to accept that the trip was already over!

We went to drop off Sandra at her house and we came back home. I was really exhausted and I had already planned taking the day off the next day to recuperate from my weekend... My brain was working slowly, as if it couldn't come back to its normal speed because of all the emotions that I had lived and all the tiredness that I had accumulated. But it was still a nice tiredness to live!

It's now the day after I got back home, back to my routine... I must admit that it's very hard for me to go back to my routine and accept to continue living the life that I had put aside during the last days. Even after a good night's sleep, my brain is still working slowly, I look at my most beautiful picture very often while reliving my moment with Jon, while reliving my beautiful moments spent with my friends and I tell myself that it was the best weekend of my life! Ti-pit is happy, its note pad is now empty and it told me that it was ready to take more notes next Friday for the show in Montreal!

Copyright © November 4, 2013 Marie-Hélène Cyr

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