It's been nearly a month since the attacks in Paris and I'm still coming to terms with what happened, especially inside the Bataclan. I'm still trying to process why anyone would walk into a packed music venue and plough down nearly one hundred people.
I know the basic whys and wherefores of what happened at the Bataclan. It was a soft target. There were a lot of people in one place. In the eyes of the terrorists, music is the work of the devil and no one should be allowed to enjoy it.
But there's still that other “why?”. The one question that will never quite be formulated. Just “Why?”.
Why did it have to happen?
Why did so many people have to die?
Why did they even have to die at all?
Why can't we just live in peace?
Yet still I struggle with the senselessness of it all. People who were having a night out were cut down in their prime. People who didn't expect to die that night didn't have the chance to tell their friends and families that they loved them one last time. People who were just enjoying life never went home. People who survived now having to rebuild their lives.
I know that part of it is the feeling that I had a lucky escape. Just a few days before Paris happened, I returned from a trip around Europe that saw me take in two concerts. I laughed, I sang, I danced, I lived. I did exactly what those people were doing on that fateful night in Paris.
Paris was one of the options I had back in November. I was going to go there to see the Foo Fighters play before maybe moving on to catch a concert in the days afterwards. Or I may have seen a show in the days before theirs.
Then Megadeth announced a short European tour. While I could still have seen them in Birmingham (before flying on to Paris the day after for the Foo Fighters) it was decided that I'd go and see Megadeth play in Dublin on November 9th. My Foo Fighters show was moved to the November 8th Berlin show.
I returned home from my trip on November 10th.
On Friday November 13th, while curled up on the couch, I watched in horror as Paris came under siege. I cried as the death toll rose. I mourned for those who'd lost their lives, whether at the restaurants, stadium or the Bataclan. With a heavy and aching heart, I realised that live music will never be the same again.