25 August 2015

A Perfectly Acceptable ....

A Perfectly Acceptable Substitute for No. 4: Performance at Red Rocks


While I am not taking No. 4: Performance at Red Rocks completely off the table, I am willing to acknowledge at this point that some of the things on my list just may not happen in the next -EEK!- 4 months.  So Saturday night I did something totally in the spirit of the list and of going to an outdoor concert and of No. 25: See a concert- live music.

Possibly No. 4 will end up being put on the 90 by 90 list.   Yes, that's probably going to be a thing.

But.

Last weekend the tiny little town of Salida (population about 6000 really cool people) hosted the Gentlemen of the Road Stopover.  I've been hearing about this since last January. At the time I thought "Cool. I want to go. But. I will be back in Texas."


Fast forward and my days of not knowing where I will be next continue. Turns out I will be in Colorado. And the preparations for the Stopover are coming together and tickets go on sale. Urk! Tickets are $200 each for the whole weekend, including camping. No one day tickets are being sold. Hard to justify that.
But...but... Mumford and Sons are headlining. I love them. I want to see them. But... but... $200.00.  Just for one ticket.

The last few weeks before the show and instead of the 30,000 tickets that the promoters thought would sell,  only 20,000 have been purchased.  So one day tickets go on sale.  Saturday night will be $125.00.  Still quite a bit but maybe.  But who will go with me? I don't want to go by myself. (Whine.)  I've pretty much burned Bunny out on Mumford just by constantly playing their Babel CD.

Last Friday no tickets have been purchased, no plans have been made. Bunny and I head into town for dinner and to just see how crowded and entertaining it is. The stores are all decked out with signs and British flags are everywhere and there is a party atmosphere. Bunny says "We should go tomorrow night. I have a couple of friends going."

Home again, we go onto Salida Swap, our local buy/sell/trade/find a lost dog FB spot.  "ISO two one day tickets for Saturday night".

By Saturday morning I have two discounted tickets, just have to go pick them up. I feel like I'm doing a drug deal. First stop is a house in town. I hand over $70 cash and get a sole red wrist band. Assured that is all I need, I go on to my second stop: a Shell station in the next town over. There I get an info packet and a black wrist band in exchange for 3 twenties.Wait! What's the difference? Why is one red and one black.  No one seems to be able to tell me. Did I just buy a ticket for Friday? The wrist bands need to be registered online and I get "Success!" after entering each one so ...fingers crossed...they both must be good.

Hmmm. One of these is not like the other.
Turns out one was a weekend wristband, the other was a day wristband.


Bunny and I head into town about 5:30. Mumford and Sons plays at 8:15.  Parking is easy although we have about a mile to walk to get to the stage area. Tents are everywhere. It's all so...organized. Clean.  There's a tiny security check with no wait. And ... no one ever looks at our wristbands. The instructions said they would be scanned but no.

Within ten minutes Bunny has abandoned me. O wait! She let me buy her (and me) a T-shirt first. Then she scampered off to meet up with friends.

No worries. I realized I had a choice.

I could do something I really, really wanted to do and enjoy the entire experience or I could sit at home  and whine about missing something I really wanted to do but didn't because I didn't have anyone to go with.

Guess what? I'm pretty good company for myself.

I grabbed a taco and as it got closer to 8:00 I edged my way up to the stage, picking a spot near the sound booth/VIP area because there was a low fence to lean on which also gave me a pretty good view. Somewhere along the way I realized how short I am. And how many 6 feet tall guys there are out there. With their 5'8" girlfriends.

Jenny Lewis was playing. Never  heard of her but totally enjoyed her music.  A group of exuberant twenty somethings was gathering next to me. A cute thirty something (maybe 40?) couple leaned on the fence next to me. One of the 20s asked me "You here by yourself? That's cool. How in the world did you do concerts when you were a kid without cell phones?"  Half of the couple asked if I was alone and did I want to meet them in Moab to go mountain biking next month.   Um. No. I don't even know your name but thanks for the offer.

And then.... the main course.

Mumford and Sons.  They were great. Awesome. Did I notice one bit that I was alone? No.
Would it have been nice to have someone there to ooh and aaahh over the band with?
Sure.
But better to be alone than to have someone with me that didn't care about the music or the experience.

The best part of the night? The four band members singing together around one microphone with just one guitar. Marcus Mumford asked everyone to be quiet and you know what? Everyone was. Twenty thousand people quit talking/singing/yelling and just listened. I videoed a bit of it but of course, not a very good video. I was too busy listening myself.


                    
(If you can't see this, go here.)

And when it was over I walked alone to my car with 20,000 of my new bestest friends that I had never met before.   And here's the amazing part. Not a care in the world. Not one second thought about walking alone to my car a mile away surrounded by strangers at 11pm on a dark night. Once in my car it took me exactly 4 minutes to get out of the parking lot and on my way. Like I said, everything was very well organized.

So while it wasn't Red Rocks,
which is its own experience, this huge outdoor concert was definitely an acceptable substitute for now. Red Rocks may still get done before December but it may not.
No worries.