Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Paul in London in 1984

A story about meeting Paul by Petra Zeitz.  I always enjoy reading her stories.  I think her style of writing is just really cute.   This is from the October 1985 issue of "With a Little Help From my Friends."  Photo were taken by Petra Zeitz

London 1984
By Petra Zeitz

It’s been over a year ago now that I met Paul and Linda for the first time in London, but I will try to remember most of the details.

28 June, 1984—It was our first day in London.  We had hoped Paul would be recording at Air Studios, but there were no other fans waiting and his car wasn’t in sight.  We decided to go to his house in Cavendish Avenue, but the chance to see him there seemed even smaller as he spends most of the year at his farm in Sussex.

We arrived at his Cavendish house.  The gate was closed as usual.  We saw that one of the windows in the basement was open.  Still, it looked very much like nobody was in.  We went down the street to see the street sign with all the messages written on it.  When we were on the way back to the gate, two guys who were working in another house in Cavendish Avenue called us.  “Do you wanna meet Paul McCartney?” one of them asked.  We said, “We don’t think he ever comes here.”  “He’s not in now but if you come tomorrow early in the morning, at about 7 a.m., you can see him.  He goes jogging in the morning.  He talks to you…”   Honestly we didn’t believe this guy, but we did come back the next morning.

It must have been 10 to 7 and we were standing near Paul’s gate.  Suddenly a police car came up and stopped.  “What are you doing here?” we were asked.  We were really shocked.  Did Paul call the police because we were waiting for him?  The officer was really nice and as we told him we were just waiting for Paul McCartney, he laughed.  He didn’t even know Paul was living there.  He had thought maybe we would help burglars or something like that because we stood in front of the gate watching the house!

Nothing happened.  The one window was still open.  About a half hour later the gate was opened and two men pointed as us asking, “Are you waiting for somebody?”  We said, “No, not really.”  Then we were asked to move away and not to stand in front of the gate.  The men went in again.
We met our two friends, the workers, again.  And they kept telling up Paul might come out soon.  At 20 to 8, the gate was opened again.  First we saw one of the men coming out, then a little boy with blond hair followed, and then there he was:  Paul!!!  First he looked around and asked the man, “Are they fans?” pointing in our direction.  I couldn’t stand still any longer.  I ran up to him.  My friend and the two workers followed me.  Paul’s bodyguard drove off and I knew I had to say something to Paul, otherwise he’d leave too.  I just felt like I couldn’t speak!  I managed to say a “Good morning.  How are you?”  Paul smiled.  “Good morning girls.  I am fine.  Are you on holiday?”  We said, “We are from Germany.”    Paul was a bit surprised.  He started speaking to us in German.  He knows quite a lot of German words.  It was so funny to listen to him.  We told him we wanted to go to Liverpool a few days later.  He was happy about that.  He still loves Liverpool so much.   He asked us if we were going to see the Garden Festival around there.  After about 10 minutes, we had taken a few photos and Paul had given us each a personal autograph, he said he would have to leave now.  His son was waiting for him.  He jogged up the street.  We watched him until he turned around the corner.  We were so happy; we just couldn’t believe it all!

We waited about 20 minutes and then we saw Paul and James again.  Paul greeted all the people he knew like the postman and an old lady.   Then he said, “hi girls!”  And stopped by us.  He told us how much he enjoys jogging and we asked him about his new album.  He said he was working on the soundtrack for the film, “Broad Street.”  We asked if we could take another photo but he said, “Sorry, I have to hurry now.  The kids are waiting and you know…” We thanked him and he went in.
The next day we tried to see him at Air Studios, but we didn’t see anybody there.  We didn’t want to go to Cavendish again, as we thought Paul wouldn’t like us to do so.  It was his private life and we had to respect that.  We decided to go there again over the weekend.

On Saturday and Sunday the house was empty.  The McCartney’s had gone back to their farm for the weekend I supposed.  On Monday morning it was still quiet.  Then we were a bit worried that we wouldn’t meet him again at all.  We had bought a little present for him.  It was a card saying, “Sorry we’re late for our birthday…” and a book called “Physical Fitness—jogging for men and women.”  He hoped Paul wouldn’t take that wrong as it was just a joke.

It was around 11 a.m. on Monday morning when we decided to go to Piccadilly Circus.  When we came around Oxford Circus, we saw some girls hanging around Air Studios.  I recognized Debbie who is one of the so called “MPL Scruffs.”  That meant that Paul might be coming!  We changed our plans immediately and placed ourselves on the corner of the building complex where the studios are located.   We didn’t have a long wait!  After 10 minutes, I saw Paul Linda arm in arm walking down the street.  They were in a crowd of people but no one recognizes them!  When they arrived at Air, Paul waved at us saying, “Are you the ones on vacation?”  We gave him our little present and he thanked us.  There were many fans around and we couldn’t speak with Paul and Linda as everybody was asking or autographs and photos.  Paul looked around, said, “Alight?” and then he and Linda went in.  “See ya girls!”

Paul is so sweet when he meets fans.  Linda didn’t say much, but she was too busy signing autographs.  

We said that we wouldn’t leave this place again as long as Paul was in.  We did leave in the end, but we were back at 3:00.  We met two very nice Swedish girls.  The English fans couldn’t stand us at all.  They said we’d make Paul angry and he didn’t want to see us.  (Did he want to see them every day?)
In the evening, Paul and Linda came out again.  They were greeting us and as soon as they were standing on Oxford Street they were surrounded by people asking for autographs.  We took photos and I went up to Paul with a really stupid picture of him from the “Linda’s Pix for ‘76” calendar book.  I said, “Paul, would you mind signing this picture?”  I showed it to him.  He laughed.  “Oh, that’s a wonderful picture.”  He did sign it!

Paul and Linda tried to get to their car.  Paul said, “Bye girls!  See ya!” and got in the car.  Then he rolled the window down again.    I took a photo of him in the car and he said, “Oh, very good!” and Linda smiled.  Then he said in German, “Auf Wiedersehen!” which means “goodbye,” and they drove off.the back entrance of Air.  He doesn’t like the crowds too much and Oxford Street is one of the busiest places in London.  Nobody saw him that day.

On Wednesday he had another surprise for us.  First we couldn’t believe that he goes jogging unrecognized every morning, then he was walking down Oxford street, but on Wednesday morning their driver had dropped Paul and Linda off somewhere and came to Air alone.  Later, Paul and Linda walked to the studio.  There were only the “MPL Scruffs” and us.  Paul and Linda had been to Carnaby Street and they both were having an ice cream. Paul had chocolate and Linda had something with raisins.  They said “Good morning” and Paul ask us, “alright? Gut?” (good in German).  They then went in.

We saw them coming out in the late afternoon and on Friday, we met Paul on his own again.  There were people we hadn’t seen before waiting for him.  Paul seemed to know them and he only spoke with them, like they were old friends of his.  He was wearing sunglasses and jeans and a red shit.  He looked really great.  It was our last day in London and we heard that it was his last day in the studio.  We didn’t see him again that year.

1 comment:

  1. " He was wearing sunglasses and jeans and a red shit"