On October 6th, Jen, Chad, Ryan and I headed up to Chicago to see Phil Lesh and friends. Phil is the Bassist for the Grateful Dead. I had obviously seen him before, but not with his own band, so this was a first for me. Since this was the weekend following my birthday, I decided I would get tickets for myself for my birthday gift....yes I like to buy something for myself...don't we all???
So, at about two o'clock, Ryan and I met Jen and Chad in Lafayette and hit the road. We had a great day for a road trip. It was unseasonably hot, and that didn't change when we got into Chicago. I couldn't believe how warm it was that day. I think I kinda like this global warming stuff :-)
We got into town a little early so we could grab a bite to eat before the show. We stopped at a restaurant called Redfish when we got downtown. It was really good. It's kind of a seafood/cajun place. Got myself a giant piece of fried fish of some kind and loved every bit of it!!!!
While we were sitting in the restaurant, we saw a woman trying to park across the street. The reason I say "trying" is because we saw her hit a Mustang that was behind her when she was backing into her spot. The bad thing was, she didn't even have a vehicle in front of her that she was trying to maneuver around. I know parallell parking is hard for some people, but give me a break!!! All she had to do was back up and STOP. STOPPING would have been the right thing to do anyway.
As she got out of her car, she acted as if nothing at all had happened. Of course, I'm watching her every move by this point and I see her walking toward the restaurant we're in. I started asking Chad and Ryan to say something to her when she walked in. I didn't know they would really do it though!! She walked in and came right towards our table. As she walked by, Chad said "You didn't dent my bumper did ya?" I just about lost it. She looked real timid and just said no real quick and kept walking. I'm pretty sure she knew he was kidding after we all laughed, but apparently she didn't think it was as funny as the rest of us did.
That was the big excitement at dinner time. Jen and I always talk about how much we like to just sit and people watch. That was a great example....you never know what you're gonna see!!!
After we ate dinner, we decided to walk around for a little while because we had some time to waste. I played tourist and took a couple pictures. Had I konwn that we couldn't take our cameras into the venue, I would have taken a lot more photos before the show....oh well......
Here's a sweet little picture of Jen and Chad.
Just before Jen and I tried to sneak our cameras in, I took this picture outside the venue. We were told that cameras were not allowed while we were taking this, but we decided to try to be slick and get them in anyway. We made the guys walk back about half a block with us, I suppose to throw off the door guys, and then turned around and tried to get in with our cameras anyway. It didn't work. They might as well have strip searched us. Their security was crazy. They even opened up my aspirin bottle to make sure that's what was in there.
After being denied at the door with our cameras, Chad took off in a sprint to the car to drop them off for us. I think it took him about a second and a half to get back to us. When I say sprint....I MEAN SPRINT!!!!!! He is fast!!!!
So, we finally got in and headed up to the front of the stage. We stayed up there for the first few songs, but Chad was the only trooper who made it through the heat up front. Jen took off on her own after awhile because it was too crowded and hot. Ryan and I followed shortly after that. I actually thought I was going to pass out at one point. I don't think this old building had air conditioning. In fact, I'm pretty sure of it.
We headed up to the balcony area hoping for a little less crowded area with some leg room. The show was sold out, so there really was no "less crowded" areas. In fact, the balcony ended up being hotter than the floor.....probably 'cause heat rises, huh? But, we could sit down. Normally, that's not me at a show. I'm very rarely seated when there's live music in front of me, but I'm afraid if I hadn't sat down, I would have fallen down.
We eventually ran into Jen again and hung out the rest of the show with her. Despite the heat, we had a really great time. I have to say, I was much more pleased with Phil and Friends than I thought I would be. I will definitely try to see them again when I have the chance. Got to hear some great old Dead songs, and shook my tail until I almost sweated it off.
Since Chad had been up front all night, we were all walking out seperately. Ryan, Jen and I waited outside until we saw him pop through the crowd. The ironic thing about waiting on him was that we got to see something we had already seen earlier in the day. As Jen and I were sitting on the sidewalk, we saw a car run into a motorcycle when he was trying to get out of his parking spot. The bad thing about this incident was he did it twice!!!! I thought for sure that bike was gonna fall right over. The first time he was bakcing up, a few people started yelling when he got close to the bike, and he pulled forward. After that, he backed up again, and ran right into it all over again. By this time, he had half the crowd outside watching him. We were all screaming, and I'm still not sure if he ever even realized what he had done. Gotta watch out for those crazy Chicago drivers!!!
Chad drove us home the same night so we wouldn't have to fork out a bunch of money for a hotel in Chicago. It was nice because we had Adysen's birthday party the next day. So, we really appreciated him doing all that driving in one day.
That turned out to be a great birthday present to myself. Plus, we got to spend some good quality time with Jen and Chad. You gotta love that quality time with the family.