All in all, AZ was quite enjoyable. I met an awesome new friend. She's a photographer/promoter/massage therapist. It was good to discover that rad people can exist in any town. I wish we would have had more time to hang out. She's a blogger as well and as it turns out, we both have good taste in blog templates.
I watched the for the last show on Sunday (Justin's final performance). We went back to In-and-out burger after the show so Panda Steve and I didn't shove of until later in the evening.
The amount of sky visible in AZ is just out of control. It was awesome to see the storm we were going to run into hovering in the distance. And the clouds out there are def like nothing I've ever seen in the burgh.
I've been digging on some old live Captain Melba tracks on these drives. I must say the one version of 'Little Sunflower' that we got all crazy layered with really set a great mood for the torrents of rain we plowed right into. The only thing left to deal with while driving my rig is some ice. Can't wait.
I'm trying to remember everything in the right order here but things are a bit fuzzy since it was such a blur. I need to use my digital voice recorder to keep the thoughts in my head straight and capture them as they happen.
So yeah, AZ was dark and way rainy for most of the time. We stopped at a Loves in Gallup. And when we almost got run down it felt like that one Mitch Hedberg bit:
"I played golf, I'm not good at golf, I never got good at it. I never got a hole in one, but I did hit a guy in one. And that's way more satisfying. You're supposed to yell "fore." But I was too busy mumbling, "there ain't no way that's gonna hit him.""
We saw the pickup scream into the lot and speed right towards us. You're supposed to yell "Holy shit!" and jump out of the way but I was too busy mumbling "There ain't no way that's gonna hit us".
Luckily Mr. Fleeing Mexican Man realized that hitting us and then crashing would probably end his high speed chase so he served by us and missed my new truck still sitting at the pump by an inch or too.
The funny thing is, if these stations didn't enforce that freakin' "$75.00 minimum" on a single fuel transaction, I wouldn't have had to open three separate transactions and run inside each time for the receipt since the pump printer was broken.
"And THAT'S why you always use the trucker side to fill up your tank!" as J. Walter Weatherman would say....
Crashing in the Wal-Mart was fine as we had lots of RV company.
One of the coolest things about the drive the next day was both passing The Ringling Brothers Semis and thinking "Hey, that's me!" and passing other people from the show in their RV's.
Other highlights included finding a rusty old AM country station to play once I hit Texas, finding an 80s station around Lubbock and rocking out to Berlin, Billy Idol, and Foreigner before I lost signal, and arriving on the lot.
No matter what time you roll in someone comes over to either tell you where to park and/or help you park. It really wasn't that hard. We have regular campground hookups here. I was able to back it up in the almost pitch black and get everything hooked up and leveled.
Robbie, Vas, and Jeff were hanging when Steve and I rolled in so we joined the crew after our trailers were set. It's such a cool thing right after arriving in the middle to hang out and unwind from the drive. Marty rolled in soon after Steve and I and joined the crew. T'was a good night.
I got the trailer repaired as best I could late this morning. The 2" clamps really came in handy for spots where it was impossible to get the siding back where it belonged.
Steve and went on a quest to find a new double kick pedal, do laundry, and get some groceries.
I found a listing for 'Drums and More' only a couple miles away which sounds perfect, right?
Well...we roll through the ghetto of Waco to this abandoned looking building. There's the remains of a Liquor store in the front and a little sign that says 'Drums and More in back". So I take a little stroll and there's this teeny little sign leading to a small door....which is locked. Great. I took a picture but the camera battery is dead so that'll be forthcoming.
I get back in the truck so we can try somewhere else when this older dude with a big beard and not many teeth kind saunters by the truck. He's where a drum shirt so I figured 'what the hell...'
I get out, wave, and walk up to the guy. I ask if he knows about the drum shop and explain my need for a double kick pedal. So in the exact Texas accent you would imagine some who looks the way he did would have he said:
"We moved across the street. See that old grey house with the green car in the drive? It's back there. Pull on over and I'll meet'cha there. We got some kick pedals"
So Steve pulls to there curb and gets my instructions that if I'm not out in 20 minutes to either call the Calvary or get a samurai sword and pull some Bruce Willis Pulp Fiction shit.
The "Drum Store" is this dude's basement. There's random heads, drums, and some hardware strewn about. Nothing is in any kind of box. We go into the second room and he motions to a corner where a few random kick pedals are laying. His name is 'Art'. And he was awesome.
"We ain't got any double kick pedals but these are all for sale.....expect this one (he grabs an old looking pedal and holds it).
I explain again that I don't need a double kick pedal but I appreciate him showing me his store (he was very nice).
"Well how about these drums? They're and old set of Slingerlands (yeah from about 1988). You interested in them?"
I again explain what I need.
"Well lemme right down our phone number for ye in case you need some sticks or something"
He hands me a green piece of paper whose header reads "Northern and NYE Printing and Office Supplies" on which he's written his name, "Drums and More" and the phone number.
I figured if anyone knew of any venues that exist in Waco it would be this guy so I ask him.
"Oh yeah, we got Treff's. Are you off tomorrow night? We got us a good jam band down there (he rattles of who each of the members plays for) called the 'Kick Ass Assassins'. They're real good."
"And My band is playing this Saturday at Ace's Bar and Grill. We have a funny video on our myspace you should watch. It's me playing 'Wipeout' blindfolded (he mimed what it looked like....only since he didn't have a blindfold there he just shut his eyes really tight and flailed around)."
I thanked him again and after letting him know that 'no, I'm sorry, I can't get you a pass to come see the circus', we left.
That's the only Music Store in Waco, folks. I called about 5 other numbers in the vicinity and they were all either disconnected or were now something completely different. Yeah, buddy.
The laundromat was a laundromat. They did have Ms. Pacman with the speed chip so I rocked that for a bit and they had on of those vintage machines where you put in a quarter, the plastic chicken rotates and makes what probably sounded like a chicken noise 30years ago when the machine was new and an egg pops out of the chute containing a prize.
I'm the proud owner of a tiny pink high-heel erases with glitter in it. I think I'm going to try to find on of those machines in every town we hit and label the eggs with what city they're from.
Anyway, we went and ate some awesome Mexican food, hit up Wal-Mart for a couple things, and rolled back here.
I'm taking Tobias in for his first oil change tomorrow morning early.
So yeah, that's about it. I had thought of so profound things to write about on the drive down here....but since I didn't archive them somehow right away, they're gone....I'll try to be more prepared the next time I have thoughts.....