Monday, June 30, 2008

A Night On The Lawn

My life is not perfect but it is full of perfect moments and times. This weekend was another one of those times. After a good night's sleep on Friday night, I woke up on Saturday morning feeling very rested. On Saturday afternoon my friends and I headed for Indianapolis to see Joe Cocker and the Steve Miller Band. Shortly after getting on the road, we drove into some torrential rain. It was an ominous sign for what might lay ahead. The concert was outdoors and we were sitting on the lawn. We've gotten to the point where we actually like being on the lawn. That's a good thing because the price of gas would probably force us to sit out there anyway. Anyway, back to the rain. Within a few minutes we were out of the rain and the weather turned beautiful. Since it was a weekend there were no traffic backups and we reached our destination easily and without incident. When we got out of the car the sky was blue, the sun was shining, a cool breeze was blowing and there was no humidity. The rock and roll gods were once again smiling on us. We got into the venue after going through everything but a strip search. I immediately climbed up the hill and staked out a small piece of turf about halfway up the hill and directly in front of the stage. At this point the crowd was light, everyone around us seemed happy, and we were all eager for the music to begin. Right on time Joe Cocker came on stage. During his set I realized that next summer will be the 40th anniversary of the original Woodstock where Joe Cocker first became famous. Where has the time gone and so quickly! My friend Bridget loves Joe Cocker. She danced through his entire set as the blazing orange sun set in the western sky and the cool wind blew through the crowd. What can I say about my other friend, Tom? We have been friends since we were teenagers in high school. We have been to more concerts together and apart than we can remember. I don't think either of us thought we would still be going to rock concerts at our current age. We've moving a little slower these days but we're still out there getting it done. It takes both of our brains to piece together our life's adventures, especially our shared youth. My other friend and companion is Bridget's nephew Josh. He's about the age of my youngest son but he loves the music of my generation. We take him to everything as part of his life's education. We feel responsible for exposing him to all the classics and I'm not talking Beethoven here. After Joe Cocker finished his set there was a break as the roadies set the stage for the Steve Miller Band. During the break I found myself sitting back in my chair, looking at the sky and the setting sun, feeling the breeze and thinking how wonderful life can be. Admittedly, sometimes you have to drive 300 miles round trip to enjoy the kind of night I was having but here's the deal. If you want a great life and wonderful times, you've got to get off your butt and put some effort and work into it. After the break it was obvious who most people came to see. It seemed like the crowd had tripled and suddenly the entire lawn was filled with people of all ages. Most of them were feeling very loose due to the consumption of $8.50 cups of beer. The Steve Miller Band hit the stage and approximately 25,000 people sang and danced for the next two hours. I am not a very good dancer even though I do sometimes "shake my booty" to make my granddaughter, Chloe, laugh hysterically. When the show was over, the rock and roll gods magically put my car on the front end of the traffic and soon we were heading home. As I crawled into my bed at 3:00 AM, I was tired but happy that I can still rock and roll and that I haven't succumbed to old age yet. The next stop is Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and Steve Winwood in Cincinnati on July 8th. I better start resting up now.

Some people walk in the rain, others just get wet.
-Roger Miller

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