Monday, June 13, 2005

Enchanted

Saturday was the Stevie Nicks and Don Henley concert at the venue formerly known as the Star Lake Amphitheater. The day started out sunny and beautiful and I ran errands and did some handyman work at my house (pregnant women and power tools are a great combination). Ryan and I drove down to his foreman’s house, because we went to the concert with him and his wife, and an older man that he works with and his girlfriend. On the way down it started pouring, which had me worried because we were going to an outdoor arena. By the time we arrived in Cranberry at the foreman’s house, it was dry, but cloudy. We barbequed and it suddenly started thundering and lightening and POURING even harder than before. Shit. Finally it slowed to a drizzle.

For some reason, rather than leaving after we ate and tailgating in the parking lot of the amphitheater, everyone insisted on drinking there. The concert started at 8, and by 6:30 I was nervous. I was the only one NOT drinking, so basically I was just sitting there pointlessly. I played with their dog, one of those wrinkly faced, curly tailed things (I can’t remember what they’re called) who drooled a ton and stunk terribly. At one point it shook its head and it was like a scene out of “Turner and Hooch,” I was showered in doggy drool. Plus it insisted on continually jumping on me, which got aggravating. It was a small dog, but I still didn’t want it to jump on my belly, which it did, and I have 2 scratches on my arm from shoving it off me a dozen times.

Ryan has been working in paving for 5 years now, so I’ve hung out with my fair share of pavers, and they really are all the same. They’re loud, obnoxious, and don’t give a shit what they say. They love to harass and pick on anyone who will take it. All to varying degrees, of course. And yes, Ryan is exactly like that. So I wasn’t surprised when the older guy that he works with kept harassing me about why I married Ryan, and wasn’t I supposed to be smart with all my degrees, and this and that, and SHUT THE FUCK UP ALREADY. It was funny the first 27 times, dude, but seriously.

Ahem. This isn’t all bitching though. They were all very nice people, but as you know, it takes me a bit to warm up to people I don’t know, and the fact that I can’t consume alcohol and everyone else could was making it worse. Finally, at 7:00 everyone decided it would be a good time to go. The loud annoying man insisted that we could all fit in his Dodge Intrepid. Bear in mind, there were 6 of us, 7 if you count all of me. So the foreman’s wife said she would drive, since she had only had 2 beers (still scary) and she and the annoying man’s girlfriend sat up front, which left me, Ryan, the annoying man, AND the foreman to SQUEEZE into the backseat. Luckily from Cranberry it was only about a 45 minute drive there, because we were squished in the backseat like sardines. Not very comfortable.

After a few terrifying moments during the drive (a semi that almost hit us in the rain and the foreman’s wife swerving into the other lane while looking at us all in the backseat… only 2 beers, huh?) we got there. And I found the nearest portopotty since my bladder, along with everything else on me, was squished during the drive. I came back to the car to find everyone sucking down more beer. Which was fine, I don’t care if I’m the only sober one, but if you’ve ever been in a situation where you’re the only one NOT drinking and therefore the only one with a fully functioning brain, you know how annoying it can be to deal with a bunch of drunks. I was there to see a concert, NOT to drink in the motherfucking parking lot. It was 8:00, let’s GO!

On our way in the gates, as everyone was standing at the “no containers beyond this point” sign (a group of people walked by with cups, and a woman remarked, “it says no open containers, not CUPS" and walked by… hello, what do you think a cup is?), chugging their beers, the rain stopped. Thank you, mother nature. Believe it or not, everyone took this opportunity to go buy more alcohol. I got a bottle of water and a chair, since we had lawn tickets. I wasn’t about to stand the whole time. As we were making our way up the hill to find a spot to sit, Don Henley started.

I’m not a Don Henley fan, but I was pretty surprised at the fact that I knew every single song that he played. Of course, he did some covers, and he played some Eagles songs, but I was most excited when Stevie Nicks came out and sang with him on Hotel California. Her beautiful wavery voice just overpowered his, and it was like watching magic happen. She stayed on stage for a few more of his songs which I thought helped his set immensely. You knew that the audience was there to see Stevie, because whenever she came out the crowd went nuts. There’s something so indescribable about her, something dark and magical. Add to that the fact that she and Henley were once lovers, and there was a spark that electrified the entire place.

Not that I didn’t enjoy Don Henley’s set, but he wasn’t who I was there to see, so I waited patiently for him to finish. When I finally thought he was done, he came back out and did 2 more songs. Then it took another half an hour to strike the stage and set up for Stevie Nicks. I was almost peeing my pants in anticipation and then the band started. I can’t even remember what song she played first, because I was mesmerized. I saw Stevie Nicks in the summer of 2001, and her show is phenomenal. This time was even better. Her band was incredible, they did solos and stuff while she had costume changes. Essentially, they never stopped playing. The power of her band and the power of her voice combined totally blew Don Henley out the water. This was her show, no doubt about it. I think Ryan was surprised, because he kept saying to me, “she rocks!” and I’d nod smugly, since I’ve always been a fan. Of course Don Henley came out and sang some songs with her, including one of my favorites, “Stop Dragging My Heart Around.” The opening to “Edge of Seventeen” was insane. She has an incredible drummer and another percussionist that plays hand drums, and they dueled. Dueling percussion. It was amazing. Then the guitar player started on the first couple notes of the song, and everyone freaked out. He played solo after solo and then kept going back to that opening note for about 10 minutes, and Stevie finally came out. That was her last song, until she and Don Henley came back out for their encore, the one song that I was hoping for, since it was my wedding song, “Leather and Lace.” I was so happy that they played that song, their one hit together and the first solo hit for both of them.

It was so worth listening to drunk pavers singing and screaming like idiots.

Guess who got to drive home? Yes, you got it, the pregnant one. Number one, I’m a terrible night driver. Two, I tend to freak out on major highways, and three, I was driving a car that I wasn’t familiar with. The foreman’s wife actually drunkenly said to me, “I don’t think you should have to be the one to drive, that’s so not fair.” Correct, it isn’t fair, but I’d rather nervously drive everyone than be squashed in the backseat, fearing for my life because someone who is drunk is driving us home. Plus, the loud annoying man (who was also very drunk) called me “fat and pregnant” so I figured I wouldn’t be too upset if I wrecked his car.

After driving back to Cranberry, I was pretty wiped out, but I had to make the drive from Cranberry back to Butler, which at 1:30 in the morning is a fairly quick one. We got home at 2:00. I don’t know the last time I was out that late, much less up that late. I passed out as if I were drunk as soon as my head hit the pillow. I felt like crap all day yesterday, and did absolutely nothing. I actually felt like I was hung over. Must have been all the pot smoke in the air or something.

These same people want to go to Mellencamp in July… I’m doomed.

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