Edmonton Oiler Gilbert Brule and his girlfriend were driving in West Vancouver Tuesday when they decided to pick up a hitchhiker… who turned out to be U2’s frontman Bono.
Brule and girlfriend Kelsey Nichols were driving to a park to walk Bella, their German shepherd, on Tuesday afternoon near the West Vancouver Yacht club when they spotted a couple of hitchhikers on the side of the road.
Instantly Brule recognized one of the hitchhikers as Bono.
Nichols, who was driving, didn’t believe him naturally, because, really, why would Bono be hitchhiking in West Van?
“I didn’t want to stop, but they waved and G yelled ‘that’s Bono’,” Nichols said Wednesday night at Commonwealth Stadium. “I didn’t believe him so I kept driving.”
The couple went on, a short distance anyway, all the while Brule trying to convince Nichols to turn around. Eventually, she agreed.
One of the hitchhikers did indeed turn out to be U2’s Bono, who asked if they could give him and his assistant a lift to Horseshoe Bay. Of course, Brule and Nichols obliged.
Turns out, he and his assistant had gone out for a walk when it started to rain, just before Brule and Nichols drove by them.
For Brule and Nichols’ trouble, Bono offered the couple tickets and backstage passes to his concert where he was playing in Edmonton on Wednesday.
On Nichols’s pass, he wrote: “Thanks for the ride.”
On Brule’s pass, he wrote: “My hero Gilbert.”
It was the strangest thing.
“We go to walk our dog and Bono ends up in our car,” Brule said.
Bono paid tribute to the favour onstage during Wednesday’s concert.
“I like ice hockey because people who play ice hockey are the kind of people who pick up hitchhikers,” Bono told the crowd.
“I’m ever so grateful. I’ve decided that I want to be Gilbert Brule.”