Tag Archives: memories

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.

Night owl

Its 4 am.

Yes, you read that right. 4 am. This is not an unusual hour for me. It’s about bed time, I suppose, and I write this from my bed. Quality time with my blog tonight, I guess you could say.

I’m a night owl. I am sure many people think this fact is due to my having married a musician who is, by profession, a night owl himself. However, I think a big part of why my husband and I ever hit it off is the simple fact that I’ve pretty much always been a night owl.

I remember back in Elementary school, I was baffled about how none of my classmates knew that at 10:30 pm, after the news, M*A*S*H came on for half an hour. Bed time was always after that show, of course, but it was perfectly normal for me to stay up to watch the show!

My classmates were all in bed by, I assumed, 8 or 9 pm. Me? I’d be up until 11 pm, mostly because there was no point to my going to bed any earlier. I wasn’t going to sleep anyway!

In high school, I was introduced to After MidNite with Blair Garner while I did homework. IF I was done with my homework, I’d still lay in bed awake until all hours listening to the radio host’s antics. If there was an artist I was really interested in being interviewed, I’d be awake until 3 am easily… waiting to hear the interview.

Now, all this being said, I’ve never been a morning person. I can remember in Elementary school, I’d get up and have cereal for breakfast. I’d build myself a fort out of cereal boxes around my bowl in an attempt to keep the light out. I already didn’t think the day should even consider starting before 10 am. At the earliest.

Somewhere along the way, I learned how to live on about 4 hours of sleep. I did that through most of college. Go to bed around 3 am. Get up by 6 or 7 am. Drive to 8 am classes. I kept this schedule up into my job at a newspaper… staying up late, though, to talk to a guy instead of to do homework.

I married that guy.

I moved to Nashville.

My night owl-ness got worse.

You can ask most of my friends here in Nashville. This fact is not unusual. It’s almost a, “Welcome to Nashville,” phenomenon.

However, its not when we go out, or if I pick up a night working downtown at the bar, that my being a night owl takes a ridiculous turn. While I’ve driven home from downtown while the sun rises, its actually when my husband goes on the road that I stay up super late. You see, sunrise offers me some sort of strange security blanket. Its like the first rays of light bring with them this sense of safety. Like I can relax and go into that vulnerable sleep-state.

I sleep as the sunrises. I wake as most go to lunch. Some days, I wake as the school bus drops off neighborhood kids. I have coffee and cereal, as they have candy bars and cokes. This is normal for me.

I try hard to adjust my schedule from time to time. I miss daylight, and I force myself up by 10 or 11 am. However, I often still stay up late after that… and I find myself sleeping even later than normal the next day to compensate! Its at times like that, that I realize that sometimes its not worth fighting the body’s natural clock. I’ll fight it when we have kids. For now, I’ll just stay a night owl.

It is what it is. And what it is now… bedtime.