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by Caroline Von B

It was freezing in Dublin. We hung around the venue most of the week inadequately clothed, and being handed hot tea by the surprisingly friendly security.

I was quite ill that night and was walking on a lethal mix of cough mixture and whiskey. I grabbed a quick kebab before the show.

A lot of money changed hands for me to see this gig. I bought two tickets off a scalper - and found our seats up halfway up the venue, among the VIPs.

We sat behind the Edge's wife and sister, and a lot of the old Lypton Village gang. A couple of rows behind us sat Gavin Friday.

The view of the crowd in front of the stage was impressive - singing, dancing, embracing each other while Dave Fanning counted down to midnight.

It was, of course, New Year's Eve. The gig was broadcast around the world on radio. It meant the band played a safe set, but that didn't matter much - it was always going to be an emotional time.

'Should auld acquaintance be forgot,' Bono sang as the band arrived on stage. I hugged my friend and shouted 'Happy New Year!'

The rest is a blur, though I remember Bono climbing up some speakers, lying down spreadeagled and hollering 'Life is a Cabaret' into the microphone.

When '40' started the VIPs descended, and I ended up in Gavin's drunken bear-hug. 'Happy New Year,' he said, smelling quite strongly of alcohol.

My friends and I gathered, flushed and excited. I grabbed a coke to cool down and it made my stomach turn.

I left my kebab on the quays, while my friends handed me tissues and carried me back to our hotel.

It was a perfect night.

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