Rihanna’s ambitious adventure of dragging 150 members of the press, 50 fans, her massive entourage and 15 duffel bags of clothes on a private plane around the world for her 777 tour has drawn to a sleep deprived, delirious end.
As her private jet made its descent into New York before her final performance she FINALLY graced us with a visit, to tell us all about why she hadn’t bothered for the rest of the mental-health threatening jaunt.
After being promised a press conference every day and access to Rihanna “as and when - she’ll be on the plane with everyone constantly,” her impromptu Q&A in our boozy, stuffy economy den was the first time we’d seen her in days.
“Usually I’d be back here partying with you guys, but on this trip I really had to take time for myself,” claimed our fanny-grabbing hostess, amidst a swarm of frantic journalists who were all generally of the belief that they were imagining her mingling with us plebs out of sheer desperation for a quote.
“This has been an experience every day, my sleeping was all done on on this plane. I didn't get to spend as much time as I would have liked with you guys. I know you're tired as well.”
Er, yeah, her sleeping was done on the plane because off the plane she was shopping for knickers in Paris, while we waited on the tarmac. Being two hours late for most shows, while we waited in the gig, and reportedly taking hours to even leave her hotel in the mornings, while we waited in buses.
"I have to pay attention to myself. I can't just go and go and go. This time I had to sleep. Usually I would be back here partying my balls off, but this time I really had to pay attention, take care of my health. We're on a plane all the time. So many people, no rest, no voice, seven shows in a row. So I tried to get as much sleep as I could.
“I still sound like sh*t right now but tonight is the last show. So, we are going to go all the way. No mercy, that’s what I mean. I'm going to put all my energy into this one show. It doesn’t matter if I sleep tomorrow.
“The hardest part...I guess trying to balance being a host and being a performer at the same time. I need to do my show and then shut up until the next show and then in two hours we have to fly and sleep. But I really wanted to hang out and interact with everybody and give everybody some of my time. I guess it was difficult, it was hard to be able to do that.”
Her lack of appearances and relenting power to be able to do whatever the frick she wants at any given moment in time resulted in a plane riot and an Australian streaker, as journalists and Rihanna’s Navy decided to laugh it off instead of collapsing in a heap of jetlaggy, weeping messes on the cabin floor.
Journalists surrounding us in our seats were all frantically on the phone to their editors trying to convince them there was still a feature to write, so please can they still have a job, and one of the UK contingent fell asleep mid write-up with his finger on the keyboard, resulting in 47.5 pages of the letter J and being featured on RollingStone.com as the epitome of a man on the edge. We’ve encouraged him to submit it to British GQ.
The shows were without a doubt the highlight of it all – live vocal or not, she absolutely owned the performances every single night. Yes, we all got used to the scripted ad-libby bits, but her closing duo of Diamonds and We Found Love was still thrilling on the last night, and the glitter shooting from a cannon still made us crap ourselves with excitement.
We’re arriving home feeling like we’ve aged at least ten more years, and waking up from a four hour kip on the plane as the most sleep we’ve had in eight days.
The commercial flight back to London pales in comparison to the Rihanna Plane – where’s the open bar? Why is everyone sitting down? Where are all the hot American journalists we’ve been trying to touch up for a week? What do you mean we can’t be on the phone and the internet as we’re taking off, standing up on our seats dancing to Rude Boi in our heads because she NEVER EVER PLAYED IT?
Life as an international superstar touring 7 countries in 7 days would be crap if you weren’t Rihanna – schlepped around from luxury surrounding to another, being allowed to delay planes and mess up air space because you fancy a lie in, and curling up in a dressing room full of Haribo Starmix, Oreos and Shreddies every night after a meal of your choice from a personal travelling chef who takes over the hotel kitchens to cater for your every dining need. But we’re not Rihanna, as much as we like to grab our crotches and pretend.
We spent entire days cooped up in non-moving buses and planes at a standstill on the tarmac to achieve one hour flights; we didn’t see daylight for a week; we ate sh*t plane food and phoned our mums to ask them if we were DEAD we were so sleep deprived. We wondered if we should have that glass of water as we might be on a bus for the next five hours and unable to pee, and tried to convince someone to draw a small sketch of Rihanna so we’d have something to write about.
We also had a plane party every single day, laughed more than we thought was ever humanly possible, got to see a SICK Rihanna show seven nights in a row, and will be bragging about the whole thing for the rest of our bleak existences.
Would we do it again? Probably after a nap. Would Rihanna?
“I would do it again, but I’d sit back here so I could see the naked Australian.”
WE NEED TO GO TO SLEEP.