BUT LOVING HIM WAS
RED
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THE RED TOUR SINGAPORE JUNE 2014
The red tour has been….the most exciting and marvelous experience in my life ever. I don’t even know when to start…to me, it isn’t just any one time single event that happened in a day, it’s a whole series of feelings and to me this event is a precious package. So let me start on the cornettos and how I got my hands on the tickets.
FEW DAYS BEFORE THE EVENT

I went to the red tour with Evangel, Evangel’s sister Ellynn, their cousin Gracia and lastly Cat Woman (her last name is Wenxin, but everybody calls her cat woman because she looks like a cat). And because we are soooooo excited, we began the ridiculous and mad conversation about meeting at 4am the following day to prepare for the event! 


I went to the red tour without even completing my wire sculpture, a assignment that was urgently due the following morning. Gahh, whatever. I’ve tried my best. Heck vas and heck submissions, the word that almost made me insane for the past few, sleepy weeks. I’ve gone so many days sleep deprived, and I strongly need this red tour session to de-stress! Where I could just scream my lungs out and immerse myself in delusional happiness for a short while, Taylor brings so much joy in my life yay 🙂 

Actually I’ve intended on fetching Taylor at the airport, but we received news a few days before that she’s arriving via VIP airport, which were denied assess in….so we’re sad girls. 😦

I count myself the lucky one. I’ve heard fan stories of people saying, “Oh Taylor, I’ve liked you since 2007, and it has been my lifelong dream to meet you; and oh my, finally, I’m meeting you, today!!” Of course, I’m as touched as them, but liking Taylor Swift since 2007 and liking Taylor Swift since last November is definitely a HUGE difference. There are people who’ve liked her for 6 years and finally met her, that day, while I only liked her for 6 months and I get to meet her? So fast? That’s why I said it all seems so surreal to me. That I’m undeserving and I’m truly blessed. Now I know how to count my blessings and I wouldn’t want to forget God either. I guess he’s the one that gave me the god-sent tickets, the miracle of having tickets even when they’re sold out and all hope is lost. Actually, I have never ever prayed to god asking for tickets, I have never expected tickets as gifts nor do I wish that I have the tickets. I didn’t even fantasize about winning tickets. I just dreamt of seeing taylor by the airport or something. Because when there were no more tickets and I was buying cornetto, I know the chances are slim and there’s no point hoping. But I don’t know why I still continued buying cornettos anyway, haha. Maybe I wanted the merchandise.

Some interesting instagram posts and comments about Taylor. I’m classical_grace and I feel very privileged to comment the last (and most important part) of the verse of RED! (see below left) And the image on the right is just written by some sweeran shippers haha.


I guessed I didn’t have that burning desire to get tickets because I wasn’t much of a swiftie yet. If there was an mathematical equation for swifties, I’m not confident of even getting a rating of 5 out of 10. I’m not sure if mine would be even above 5. When I compare myself to other Swifties, here’s what I think: distant, far behind and a lot to catch up. I was thinking, “Alright. Now I’m halfway up the “Swiftie ladder”. Maybe when I’m at the upper half, I would be mentally ready to go to the concert.” Don’t get me wrong, its not that I don’t wish to meet Taylor, its just that, there are many stages of fangirling, and I’m not at the “meet me” stage yet. So my stand was: No tickets, don’t feel sad; have tickets, ought to feel happy. So when Evangel told me Taylor extended her Singapore red tour and added an extra date, 9th June, and more seats were freed on the 12th, I went online and ordered it immediately. It was hard with all the irritating wifi connections and procedures, but I did it on that night. And that was super last minute, it was collected just 4 days before the red tour.

“Oh my god!” I punched the air. “This had got to be the best day ever. I am going for the red tour! I am going for the red tour!!”
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FEW HOURS BEFORE THE EVENT
After rounds and rounds of discussion, we decided to meet at Evangel’s house. It was my first time at Evangel’s house wow! And being us and the competitive nature in us, we actually planned to reach Evangel’s house earlier to prepare for Club red! I wanted to get in Club red super badly because a few days before the concert, I went on insstagram and searched for #clubred and the photos all showed swifties having so much fun :’)

Club red is like an exclusive meet and greet event after the concert, and only 20-30 most enthusiastic and outstanding fans will be picked among the 12,000 fans. In club red, the fans can take pictures with Taylor Swift and really meet her in person. Its super appealing because I’ve seen the instagram pictures and Taylor was really hugging her fans tightly!! Its almost as good as becoming a millionaire overnight. So at first we planned to be really “CHIONG AND ON”, we wanted to wrap our bodies in LED lights or even give out free hugs to swifties. We were even debating against if we should use party poppers but abandoned the idea since it was against the rules. I was super sad certain ideas were dropped, as LED lights were too expensive and stuff, but we really had to be special and unique in order to get noticed and stand out from the crowd.


In the end, we still brought LED lights to wrap around our sign.


When I arrived at Evangel’s house, her mum welcomed me. Thank goodness I didn’t spend hours looking for your place. Ellynn and Evangel was decorating their very own personalize taylor swift RED T-shirt. And then I was like, “Dang! I should’ve done that.” Both of them wrote T-swift lyrics at the back of the shirt using a marker. It was super cool. Meanwhile, I painted my arms, writing “TAYLOR” in bold red. Now I’m complete! I have painted my red nails, painted red hands, have red heart shape sunglasses(the one Taylor used in her 22 MV: I saw a lot of swifties with those at the venue, oh gosh so embarrassing I thought it was only me!) and not forgetting my January red highlights. I’m so delighted in myself that I chose RED back then in January when I was still at the hairdresser’s. I swear it wasn’t intentional and red tour never really crossed my mind.


Then I went to charge my fainting phone at Evangel’s bedroom even though it was already 90% haha. Super paranoid, because I expected 100%. Red tour is a very important event. I need to take nice photos so phone cannot die! But it the end it still died because I overused it. Thank goodness it died after everything ended. Then we blasted Taylor Swift’s songs while we wait for Cat woman to arrive. Slowly, when the music reached the happy parts and climax (22 is my fav), the mood picked up and all of us became ultra excited for the red tour!! So…..Her mum decided to drive us there. Was very nice of her to do so! I was quite phobic of the mrt peak hour rush hour time already. But Cat woman did not turn up at Evangel’s house and she was late so I chided her for that muahahahhaah. “I waited for you so long how could you!!” I think she was bathing in her own sweet time.



Cat woman took a good look at my arms and said, “Your kidneys are going to die…the marker is really bad!” And then I learnt that when you draw on your arms and your skin absorbs the ink, its poisonous and you kidneys have to get rid of them HAHA. But I said its okay since I seldom draw on my arms, maybe I only allowed myself to do it once in 3 years, only for very very veryimportant things. What has made me break my moral of “no drawing on hands”? It’s Taylor LOL. The rest of the girls only started drawing their arms with markers when we arrived at the venue.

We arrived at the Singapore Indoor Stadium in the late afternoon and gosh memories of Disney on Ice came flooding back! I went there earlier this March for Disney On ice concert (promise will blog about it soon!) so this is my 2nd time visiting SIS in a year, I feel so lucky being able to watch concert after concert. I foresee a 3rd time; you know what they say, 3rd time’s the charm. (Keep my fingers crossed, hopefully XD). 



And the first thing i saw when I reached there is this!! They got Taylor to do a road safety video! Because who will listen to the best advertisement when there’s no taylor inside right! what a good tactic…..but its so weird hearing Taylor say all this in Singapore though XD


Sorry about the sidetrack…so…we reached Indoor Stadium around 5pm. We actually planned to reach there at like 4pm when the merchandise store opens and so that we can grab the items before they run out of stock. 


And because the merchandise store opened at 4pm and we were terribly, terribly late, (5pm is already considered late), there was a freaking long queue in front of the store omg. I almost fainted. Its been ages since I saw a queue like that. I cant even remember when. Well, the last time I saw a queue like that was probably, national day??? Or people queuing for the casino entrance during Chinese New Year? And furthermore, it was so squeezy, I had to climb a tree to see what was merchandise items on sale.(you know everyone likes to see what’s available beforehand and before the queue reaches you, so that when it’s your turn you would already know what you want, not “erm…ah…uh…” and spent your embarrassing time deciding). Silly, kidding I didn’t climb a tree. I stood on those park benches. Yes, this photo was taken on top of a tree as well.


So anyway besides the long queue, the merchandise was ultra overpriced and expensive!!! One T-shirt is sold for $65 and jackets for $300. One piece of cloth for $65? I wouldn’t mind if it’s from Topshop or Bershka, but I bet the material exactly similar as my class t shirts, which costs less than $20. I was hoping to get a t shirt and I have been fantasizing about it all day but ugh, I didn’t in the end of course. If I did I bet a lot of people might have judged me because of the value. And they sold the guitar picks set for $20. I am SO HONOURED I got it for free by just eating a cornetto ice cream cone. As I said, because we were late and there was a long queue, by the time it was out turn, wrist bands were out of stock, glow sticks were out of stock, certain poster designs I wanted was out of stock, so Gracia and I ended up getting another Taylor swift poster design for $15.



I loved the how the whole venue had various stations and photo booths for us to take pictures and then we get freebies in return! Who doesn’t love freebies? I think the organizing team did a really good job. They kept us busy before the event started and kept our spirits burning red. The cornetto ice cream vendors came and who wants free ice creams can just take!! I got 3 ice creams FOR FREE that day and I even won more guitar picks with the lids! And Cat woman got a free sound amplifier, the one that can only be won by eating cornettos. All she did was take a picture and upload it online J



But on the whole it was fun! We had time to explore around and went to the toilet to touch up our red lipstick HAHA. We weren’t the only people around wearing red lipstick. Other swifties also wore it and suddenly it seems that was the trend of the day. It was rather predictable though. Super fun, everybody wearing red lipstick together. Cat woman was so eager to try out my red lipstick but I swear it’s her first time applying it. In the end she smudged the lipstick all over! But thankfully we got it sorted it out. 

Look at her partially smudged lipstick below HAHA. We had a great laugh.

I have a confession to make don’t kill me. I HATE RED LIPSTICK. If it weren’t for Taylor, I wouldn’t wear it HAHA. Bet you all don’t know. Red lipstick is the only kind of lipstick that is as “poisonous” as the black paint when you draw (designers you’ll know what I’m talking about). Once you apply a slight tint, its enough to fill your whole lip. Apply a lil extra more, you’ll get a sore lip. Just like black paint, apply a lil bit more to white paint, the whole white and become the darker shade of grey you wanted. *laugh cry* That’s why I generally avoid red lipstick.

I think we spent a considerable amount of time in the toilet though. Cat woman had trouble with her contact lenses; she had to sort it out. And omg cat woman if you’re reading this, stop rubbing your eyes so hard with your contacts inside! Its so harmful and your eyes were red that day. Haha. RED. Okay I’m crazy about that colour but I’m saying its for your safety. It’s too gory to watch. Stop it! Then as we’re coming out of the toilet, I overheard a Caucasian saying, “So many people!” and another said, “Yeah, I think there’s a concert going on.” Inside I was literally fluttering with excitement and dying and I feel like going up to them and screaming, “Yes its Taylor swift’s concert and I’m so proud I’m going!” But I managed to contain my excitement for now. Oh and yeah speaking about Caucasians, I was surprised to see there were many (and I mean really MANY) of them at the concert!



There are even more nicer photo booths for us to take pictures inside! (like the one below) but there was a long queue!

Just as we were queuing, we heard a high, piercing scream of ecstasy, followed by a tremendous uproar. My heart was in my mouth. I ALMOST THOUGHT KING KONG WAS COMING


I turned, and looked. And everything was playing in slow motion.

The gates opened.


The crowd roared, and flocked in, trampling on everything on the ground.


Everything in my world seemed to stop after that.


The doors to all the Swifties dreams-some big, some small, some have waited for years, all the prayers, tears—that “magic” door actually opened.


And everything happened in a blur after that.

THIS IS IT
The lights faded and suddenly all the light sticks appeared like magic, glowing radiantly in contrast to the black, dark nothingness. I couldn’t see anything in pitch black, but the noise reached dizzying levels as whistles and cheers blurred into a cacophony of sound. The words RED illuminated the beautifully decorated the stage, I almost thought we were welcoming the presence of an angel. The set was so beautiful. “TAYLOR SWIFT” was flashed across the LED screen in bright, red and bold neon letters. And it was starting. It was really starting. I was sweating like crazy and I looked like crap but I don’t care because the curtains are about to withdraw itself any moment, and it was starting. I just kept telling myself that.


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But NO. We got cheated a lot of times!! There were instances where fans thought she was going to make an appearance, and roared really loudly, but didn’t! And then you’ll hear the ascending noise levels, only to hear the roar fade again. Haha, so funny. It was quite interesting to watch fans being cheated though. Excluding me.

I dashed down from my 2nd row to the barricade in my section where I can get the perfect view of the whole stadium. We’re seated at the highest section, left hand side, 1st row. In fact, 2nd row to be precise. Evangel and gang sat at the 1st row because we purchased the tickets separately and at different timings. (Trust me; I was super sad for 2 whole days because of this) But turns out I was sad for nothing as I get to stand with my friends! At first I was worried if security would come up and chase us back to our seats but everyone is standing and well! We are given the freedom to stand wherever we want! Isn’t it great, I’m so, so glad.


Thank God the security wasn’t very tight that night. There was no sign of a single security guard patrolling in our section. Not even a shadow was spotted haha. So although there’s a big black sign outside reading “NO PHOTOGRAPHY”, do you think anyone would care?? Rules are meant to be broken on a night like this yeah! Whoohoo! SO everybody whipped up their handphones and started filming and its so obvious, because there were camera flashes everywhere. Nobody even made an effort to try and conceal it, we just openly did it haha. I guess this concert wasn’t as strict, which is good. Jingwen told me that when she went for her kpop concert “super show”, security guards actually went to the extent of shining torches at your face when you take pictures, because its violating the rules of SM entertainment. Really reminds me of a detective show lol. Thank God taylor has a GREAT company, Big Machine Records. As long as we’re not harming anyone, it’s fine.


POSING LIKE TAYLOR

I saw that the barricade was dangerously low. Standing tall, the pathetic barricade only managed to reach all the way till my waist. From then on I made a mental note to myself that no matter how wildly I’ll dance later on, I must not forget there’s a hazard beneath us that we could dance vigorously, lean over and fall anytime. And because its low, I’m not only worried about my safety, I’M WORRIED ABOUT MY 1 WEEK OLD PHONE’S SAFETY. But its okay, since it’s a once in a lifetime experience, I boldly held out my phone where I filmed the concert and I still dared to tilt the phone around and around many times to switch perspectives, ahaha. (and praying it won’t fall)

Before we went in we saw this sign and it was so funny because we decided to do the same thing as Taylor.


With that, I leaned forward and looked down. I saw how high up we were from the rest of the people below!! The people in the mosh pit looked like little ants! I’ve always wanted to go into the mosh pit. It’s a silly dream. And its because of a really stupid reason. Why? Because the name “mosh” sounds very swag and funky. But when I looked down, nah. Not swag at all. Everyone was squeezing together eww! Everyone is bound to sweat and imagine if everyone smells each other’s sweat!! It must have been really humid in there. 


There! More freebies! They just gave the KEDS discounted vouchers like flyers!


Well, the good thing about mosh pit is if you are early and lucky and you’ve managed to stand very near the stage, you can get to touch Taylor Swift. Or she might end up having eye contact with you or waving at you. That’s the good part. In some countries, 5-6 fans in the pit even get to lift Taylor up! Its good to see how Taylor trusts them. Ah, well, mosh pit is cheaper anyways….why did I even buy a more expensive ticket to sit further away from Taylor swift?? Should have brought mosh pit tickets! Never mind, I’ll do it next time when I go for Lady gaga’s concert, if she ever holds it in Singapore. Hers is not called “mosh pit”. It’s the monster pit! Cooler.


Suddenly the singer’s dark, willowy silhouette appeared behind a silky scarlet curtain and even in shadow, her curves seemed perfect. But I literally thought it was a fake projection by some visualizer. It took me by utter surprise when she suddenly appeared and burst into the chorus of “State of grace”, a song which I shamelessly claimed to my friends, “Hey it was dedicated to ME!” And when I saw her, the state of grace now was very happy; very, very, very happy indeed.

The sold out arena was full of life, spirit and vibrant red. Taylor paused for a very long time, not speaking and there was a silence that was both comforting and very surreal. I guess she was basking in her success and today, she still felt in was unbelievable. I enjoyed these silences. It was a precious connection with her army of followers that I’m not sure if other artistes display it too. She blinked backed tears of happiness. I noticed it. Cat woman asked me, “Is she crying?”

“If you look close enough, you’ll notice.”

I hung on her every word. “Nice to meet you, I’m Taylor. And welcome to the very last night of the red tour.”
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DURING THE CONCERT


Taylor appeared wearing the shirt that says “Singa”!!! Its so cool to see her supporting Singapore. I think she likes Singapore a lot because her mum grew up here. Evangel beside me was shouting like crazy. And like I said, she was beside me so when she shouted she was shouting into my ear HAHA. I thought I was going deaf. So we both shouted, screamed so loud like you’ve never screamed in your whole life before and training our vocals at the same time.

World wide red tour is trending on twitter and instagram!! At the opening act, they asked us to shout, saying, “Swifties!! Let all the four corners of Singapore hear you tonight!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LET’S ROCK THIS STADIUM TONIGHT”

And then came the set piece I knew you were trouble. (IKYWT) I had to spell it down in case you wouldn’t know what that means. Okay, let me take off my spotlight on Taylor for a minute, and praise Caitlin, her angelic violinist. She really inspired me to learn my violin well! She does her introduction solo for a good 2-4 minutes before Taylor burst into the song. Let me say her solo was MIND BLOWING. DO NOT, I say do not, underestimate her solo!! I strongly encourage you to catch a youtube video of it. Her ego is awesome, and Swifties were cheering for her even though she wasn’t Taylor, because she was just too good. Thumbs up! Plus she has naturally red hair.


And her speech before she performed “mean” with the Banjo was beautiful. Talking about bullying and issues with insecurity, its where she gives us strength and that night I truly felt that, I’m not alone, that I have God and I have Taylor’s awesome encouragement. She ended her speech with, “…..look around you, appreciate it, and I hope, so badly that you guys are as happy as I am right now.”


With that, we broke into a dance. A wild, mean dance. Oh my, what a marvellous night! Oh, and I have an embarrassing video footage of it that I wish I can post on this blog but I can’t. Nobody was judging anybody for the first time in forever because everybody’s here to have fun.



 Well….expect for this “mood spoiler” or “spoilsport” couple that was actually sitting beside me (until I got up from my seat). I noticed them throughout the whole show. They were not high at all! Then what’s the point of coming to the concert if you don’t have fun? I even resorted to guessing maybe someone gave them the unwanted tickets and they didn’t want to waste the tickets, so they came and maybe they are secretly not Taylor’s fans. At first when I was sitting beside them in the opening act before Taylor appeared, I was thinking, “Why are these 2 people so quiet and they look so bored??” and then I comforted myself, thinking, “Maybe they’ll be crazy once Taylor appears, they’re just un-interested at this stage.” But sadly, that was not to be. 


To think at home, I was even imagining myself making new friends with Swifties and sitting beside some crazy fangirl that I’ll share my light sticks with. In contrast to them, we literally threw all our dignity away that night. What on earth is dignity that night? Not in our dictionary. C’mon, is dignity that important? So #yolo, we let our hair down and clapped and sang! Like really crazily and mad.

T W O    W O R D S :
L E G I T    C L U B B I N G .

POST RED TOUR SYNDROME
When we’re about to go home, we saw another crowd around the back road area where a lorry was parked. I think its that same lorry we saw earlier in the day. I guess the lorry was for the musical instruments/props?? They were unloading the stuff there earlier on. Anyway, there was a crowd! So we went up to see what’s the commotion about and turns out everyone was waiting for Taylor to come out backstage. Soon after waiting for a long period of time, the crowd got bored, and my ice cream was melting. Every single time a person appears out of the lorry or the back of the stadium, we cheered for fun. Then suddenly, the cheering got very loud. I can’t see if it’s a crew member or one of Taylor’s dancers but we all began chanting, “TAYLOR! TAYLOR! TAYLOR!” but she didn’t turn up so the five of us left 😦


When online and saw some fan recounts, felt so jealous 😥 That girl got a picture with Caitlin! CAITLIN MY FAVOURITE VIOLINIST!!

The next day I got up and found out there’s no club red! How could they! My friends and I are all angry because first, its unfair to us compared to the previous batch of swifties and second, what about those people that actually put in effort to dress up and such? UGH. We were guessing Taylor is too tired, after so many red shows. And I think if I were her, I would be bored, performing the same set and wearing the same costumes over 50 times. And she took a 14 hour flight back to New York right away after the concert. Though I empathize with her with the long and tiring flight awww, but I was sad that she flew back so quickly, like what’s the hurry man? Stay and explore Singapore! The last round during fearless tour, she stayed and went to Chinatown! 


But oh well, at least she said some good things about Singapore.


I surprised she didn’t display any sentimental value to Singapore. (Other than adding an extra tour date, which wasn’t done on purpose but because of the Thailand protest between red and yellow team) Because her mother grew up in Singapore, her mum came too!! And some lucky fans got to take photo with her during club red for Night 1, June 9th, the earlier batch. I even heard it was mama Swift that picked the people for club red..so jealous. 


Yup so she went back to NYC straight.

And she got a new cat named Olivia Benson! Many people are waiting for her 5th album now.


CONCLUSION
Frankly speaking, I had never ever imagined I would be going to see Taylor Swift in real life, let alone the idea of going to such a big-scale grand concert seemed…..whoah! Mind blowing. I never ever thought of being part of the swiftie family, the big, warm family. Because being a new Swiftie, I thought I wasn’t “warmed up” enough yet, I thought I didn’t know enough about Taylor Swift (which I still do now) and I thought I wasn’t worthy enough of a fan to go in. (mind you, one day before the concert and I was still last minute trying the memorize the songs in her red album.) And it wasn’t the lyrics of the song that I didn’t know; that was forgivable, but it was the NAME OF THE SONG! There were even some songs from Fearless or Red that I didn’t even know existed. It was only when my friends said, “You don’t know? It’s a Taylor Swift song! Call yourself a swiftie!” And then I felt my cheeks burn red. (So punny right XD) So there I was, last minute girl, trying to catch the tune or in hoping of memorizing some parts to it…..


All I wished to say was, thank the Lord, because I remember it all too well. That night was sparkling, don’t they let it go, I’m wonderstruck…beautiful, enchanting, beautiful, enchanting, beautiful……