Tag Archives: friends

Show stories – The Road Trip Weekend

Last week was my first edition of “Show stories” and after careful consideration, I’ve decided to make this a weekly contribution to my blog.  Landing either Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on how things fall for me.

This week, I bring you a tale from long before my husband and I were even dating. We’d been friends for years before we made that step, so I have many stories pre-relationship.

September 2003 -- Four friends go on a road trip weekend

So my tale today comes from 2003, when four friends set out on a weekend of fun and live music.

Oh how I stressed prior to this trip. I felt like our lives were in my hands, so I planned and planned. I had a full itinerary printed out with maps and times and phone numbers. Pre-GPS days, MapQuest was a savior (not to mention my Texas Road Atlas!)

I was our road manager for the weekend. And bus driver.

My three best girlfriends (all of whom would later be my bridesmaids) and I jumped in my truck and we took off on a weekend trip that took us to Brownwood, TX then up to Sulphur Springs, TX. Round trip for the weekend was around 650 miles.

We took off out of my hometown on an adventure that I still consider one of my favorite memories of all time. We laughed until our sides hurt at times. We have in-jokes that came out of that trip that still make us laugh to this day.

My friends got to experience what I still call, “Waitin’ on Craig” at shows. I’ve learned over the years that the musician’s life on the road is filled with, “Hurry, hurry, hurry! Okay now wait around for awhile. Now hurry, hurry, hurry!” And that’s something I experienced years in advance without even realizing it. We would get to hang out for awhile, only to have him disappear for long periods of time.

We did get the royal treatment with All Access passes all weekend. Our second show was actually sold out, and we spent it watching from side-stage. We were able to park behind security at both shows, and both netted us some good food.

The first show was a fair, and our host for the night (my now-husband) treated us to a deep-friend s’mores. Yes it was a gooey mess, but as I recall its still one of the most amazing things I’ve ever put in my mouth. I kind of want one right now, actually.

Dunking my class ring... topping off the road trip weekend!

The second show, we all got to take some of the band’s catering back to the hotel with us. A steak dinner that was also amazing. (We spent a long time looking for a six-pack of beer on our way back to our Dallas-hotel, only to learn how much at that area of Texas is dry. My friend who is today an Assistant District Attorney even asked a pair of cops how far we had to drive to get a beer. Insert hysterical laughter here, as well as the realization that it just wasn’t worth it to keep looking.)

I remember in-between shows was a 2 hour drive from Brownwood to Dallas, in which I did successfully miss my exit. Thankfully my co-pilot knows how to read a map and she got us back on track using that handy-dandy Texas Atlas I used to carry with me at all times.  I had hoped to follow the bus to avoid such an issue, but when I realized that waiting for them would probably mean not getting to our hotel until around 6 AM, I decided we’d chance it on our own. We were big girls, and we made it just fine.

A highlight of that weekend was dunking my class ring. I’d gotten it about a month before, but I had yet to participate in the Texas A&M tradition of ring-dunk. I did so the night of the second show. In a blue Dixie cup. Because I am high class like that.

By the way, both shows were great. But the things I remember most are the events surrounding those shows. A fun weekend with the girls, and getting to see my musician friend… getting to have a little taste of the traveling musician’s life.

Two shows. Two nights. 650 miles. Precious, precious memories.

July has not been kind

I have no idea what any of us did to July to make it so harsh this year, but whatever it is, I think I speak for almost everyone, we’re sorry!

I’ve mentioned a few things I’ve experienced this month in this blog. And I’ve left other things out. (Perhaps those will come in a later blog entry.) But all around me, I’ve heard tales of tragedy and hardships.

My two best friends have both had cancer strike their families. My “best friend from high school” has a aunt that was diagnosed, and my “best friend from college” had her mother-in-law diagnosed. Both within a day of each other.

A friend here in Nashville has a nephew that has been diagnosed with cancer as well.

An acquaintance from high school had tragedy strike, leaving her brother and a nephew in a burn unit in Dallas. Her other nephew, however, did not survive the accident.

A client of my family’s business had a heart attack and was left in ICU (out of state!) for a few days because of it.

My own nephew, today, is having a doctors appointment in Dallas regarding his Muscular Dystrophy. These regular appointments are key to his doing as well as he has done all these years, but I also know the appointments are stressful and carry a level of uncertainty every time.

All of these events have weighed heavy on my heart. Each event — every single one of them — are valid concerns and stressors. While some may be considered more “severe” than others, it does not lessen the feelings that come with each and every one.

All I can do, all so many of us can do, is simply say a few prayers for strength and comfort for each person and family affected by these negative events.  I often find myself wondering why? Why do these things happen? Why so many all at the same time?

Then I remind myself, sometimes the reason is not for us to know. Or perhaps the reason will come to light in the future. No matter what, we all pull together and help each other. We support each other. And in the end, we grow from these challenges. They make us appreciate the good times more. They make us work a little harder.

Hang in there everyone. We’re all going to get through all our various trials by taking it a day at a time and by leaning on each other. I welcome anyone needing a place to vent or to share their own story –  no matter how trivial or how extreme — in the comments. Sometimes it helps just to talk, and I’m a good listener.