El Dorado – Part 2

So I’m finally back home after a week on the road. I’m feeling sick as hell; don’t know why. I felt pretty good the whole time I was away from here. I hope it wasn’t the egg salad sandwich I grabbed during our last stop for gas. My band mates got me feeling kind of nervous by discussing their bad food experiences in graphic detail – WHILE I WAS EATING. Anyway, I need to get to bed so that I can get up early tomorrow and go do my delivery job so I want to hammer this out and finish my tour entries.

I actually got a good night’s sleep at Jule’s in Albuquerque. We wanted to get on the road early. It’s a long drive and the last stretch through Kansas is a real bitch in the dark. There are no lights what-so-ever and the lane dividers aren’t even reflective so it’s really hard to see. I hate to say this because the people I’ve met in Kansas are wonderful but for a while now, Kansas has been my least favorite state in the union.

We pulled into the horse ranch in El Dorado, KS around 8:30 at night. By the way, Dorado rhymes with potato not with the Eagles song Desperado like I always thought. Not that it matters; it’s just always bugged me. Another reason why Kansas rubs me the wrong way. But like I said, it’s not the people. Peter and Liz are absolutely amazing. Their generosity and hospitality is unbelievable. Not everyone would let a crazy rock band crash at their house, but they do so much more than that. They feed us, probably the best food we have the entire trip. They always have beer, a big plus for me. Seriously, the way they take care of us I would take over any five star hotel in the world. Peter even took the night of work so that he could be there when we arrived.

I’ve done the “crashing at punk house” touring. I’ve done the “staying in hotel” touring but the kind of touring I am able to do with Venus de Mars, where we stay with friends who just want to make sure that we get something to eat and get a good nights sleep is something new. I like it. I need it. I just want to make sure that the people who are caring for us are getting something out of it. I hate feeling like a pariah (sorry, I’m sure there are racist implications of that term but I can’t address everything in one post), but my bigger concern is that people aren’t feeling taken advantage of. I believe that our band is doing something good, really good; and I believe that we are all in this together. I’m just wish that I took more time to understand why people help us. It’s really and incredible thing.

Liz came out early this morning and checked on me sleeping on the couch. She was concerned that I might be cold. I was fine. I was in my footie pajamas so all was good but I did half wake up. You know that feeling where you wake up from an intense dream and you’re not sure if it’s a dream or reality. It was kind of like that, but kind of a lot worse. When I woke up I didn’t know where I was, how I got there or what was going on in my life. It was shear terror. I felt completely lost. Things like this can happen when you are sleeping in a different bed every night but this was beyond anything like that. I seriously felt like I was loosing my mind. I chalk it up to my crazy brain rebelling on the last night on the road. Luckily when I woke up for good a little while later I was feeling like myself again.

I had stayed up later than everyone else, writing and researching Venus’ IRS situation. I was still up and about before anyone else. To clarify, I think they all woke up before me but I was the first to be moving about. It was around 8 in the morning and my understanding of the plan was that we were leaving at 10 am so we could get home at 8pm. I was really looking to get some writing done this morning given that we didn’t have to get on the road quite so early.

Apparently I was wrong; or more accurately, I wasn’t the only person loosing their mind today. Venus came out apologizing that we would be waiting on her today. Confused, I let her know that we still had a couple hours before we needed to leave. She insisted that we needed to leave by 8 am to get home by 10 pm. Now I’m frustrated, “No, it’s a ten hour drive we leave at 10 am and get home at 8 pm”. This didn’t go over well. She still wanted to leave as soon as possible. My hope of getting writing done was dashed and I was annoyed. I felt cheated. I could feel my heart rate rise and knew I was beginning to loose it.

I voiced my emotions. I said I was upset and really stressed. Venus said that she didn’t mean to stress me out and that she though she had made herself clear the night before. Yeah, communication is a bitch. I never heard anything like that and in fact the last conversation I had with her about it was quite different. The conversation she was referring to I wasn’t even present for; not that it mattered. I just said, “I’m just putting it out there, not putting it on you.” These were my emotions to deal with. I just wanted the people around me to know what I was dealing with.

And I knew Venus was under a lot of stress too. I knew that she was worried about the weather, heading back into the snowy Midwest  I knew she was worried about driving at night. I knew that her biggest worry was about this tax audit that could end the band. We spent much of the trip home in silence separated by periodic discussions of what it means to be an artist and how this is not a hobby. It has really got me thinking and I hope that I can write an essay about this distinction. I’m trying to figure out if I have any hobbies  The only thing that I can think of that might fit that description is masturbation.

We got back to Minneapolis and dropped Jazz off just as the tenth and final disc of Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett was concluding. This is seriously and amazing book and the reading performance by Martin Jarvis is absolutely phenomenal. Accept for a little David Bowie, Le Tigre and Rasputina plus This American Life and Radiolab podcasts, this was our main form of entertainment during the nearly 70 hours we spent together in that Toyota Corolla.

 

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About lefreakshow
A walking contradiction attempting to make sense of this crazy world though the power of creation, exploration and communication.

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