Oh and a Syrian-Taiwanese and a very tall Austrian.
Last November I bought three tickets for my roommates in Shanghai and I to see Rihanna in Paris at the Stade de France. It seemed like a lifetime away at the time, but then we blinked and we were printing the tickets.
The concert seemed massive when we were there, but when we heard how many people it really was, I couldn't believe it. I googled it to make sure she wasn't lying. This was Rihanna's first stadium show ever, and it completely sold out. All sorts of (French) celebrities were in the crowd on our side of the stadium and we kept having to ask people around us, "Who's that? Who's that?" as the crowd in the stands next to us would go crazy pulling out phones and snapping away. We had David Guetta's wife, the vibesiest woman alive cheering on her man as he opened for Rih, and eventually David Guetta himself joined her after his performance. Also Jo-Wilfred Tsonga, who had just made it to the semifinals of the French Open (guess who had to Wikipedia that!!) was in attendance along with some French Comic buddies.
Anyway the Frenchies were of course dying over their David Guetta (like the biggest house music party I've ever been too) but when Riri started belting out "We Found Love" ... well, I've never seen anything like it.
We didn't realize how many people it was until all 80,000 of us were fighting to get back on the RER train after the show and I had to use my Trickidadian side to get us home without spending hours in line (they were only crowd controling the travellers heading to Paris so I suggested we simply take the train in the other direction one stop and then hop on over to the other side of the track and go back the way we came. Genius!!!) I was in my bed in under an hour.
My obsession with Rihanna is no secret but I think this is a good time as any to reveal the motivations behind my intense girlcrush. And really it's super simple.
So here it is.
Are you ready?
I don't think Rihanna is super special.
Surprised yet? Read on.
When I look at Rihanna I see a young girl from Barbados with a lot of charisma and great style. But that comes a dime a dozen. To me, she's no different from my good friend Joanne, my former roommate Krista, any of my other friends, or even me. She's just a regular island girl who just got lucky.
And then she took that lucky chance and she made it her bitch.
And now, this girl, who professes that she's just "from left side of an island" is selling out 80,000 seat venues in France because she's tenacious and she refuses to let go of the opportunities she's been given. And that shit's inspiring to me.
And what's even more exciting is that there's still things she hasn't done and places she can go. After 7 years and 7 albums, she only just achieved a number 1 record in the US for the first time with "Unapologetic". Every new single that goes to the top of the charts breaks her own records. And she just played her first stadium tour.
So when I see Rihanna I feel like I have the biggest balls in the world. I see what a girl from the Caribbean is capable of. Not that I want 80,000 people knowing my name, but every opportunity I get, I'm about to make it my bitch too and jus keep building and doing better cause there's no too high or too successful for me. And I believe any other regular girl from the Caribbean can do the same.
Pics courtesy Sarah, Melissa Forde Instagram