The menu last night consisted of The Doobie Brothers, sans Michael McDonald, opening for Lynard Skynyrd. I am not much of a Skynyd fan. I grew up hearing them all over the place. Weather it was the radio, any school dance you went to (Freebird was the mantra of all high school kids in my day) and most any bar with mediocre entertainment. One of the girls from the office also came. She is not to unlike our Sassy, smart, sassy and generally fun to hang with. We headed over to the bosses to discover that we were actually going to ride with someone else and try and squeeze 8 of us into a Jeep Cherokee. You see the guy driving had an “All Access” pass to Meadowbrook and we were going in the very, very , very VIP entrance. You know the place nobody gets to go.
How cool is that! Express lane into the venue, private parking and 30 steps to the VIP drinking tent! Things were going well. The VIP tent is quite close to the stage and the vantage point is great.
The front of the stage is on the right in the picture. Pretty close from the VIP tent.
We arrived at the Other Guys house; his name is Greg and owns a large Asphalt Paving Co here. Also at his place was another man named Jim and his wife (Cindy Lou-I kid you not) who owns a rather big well drilling company. The final guest, Alex arrived after a few minutes. He owns a conglomerate of restaurants throughout NH and is very well known and quite well to do. So, there sits Pricilla (the office girl) and myself in the middle of all these Mucky-mucks feeling really out of place. Later we would discover exactly where we fit in the food chain! We climbed into the jeep and headed for the show.
Priscilla and I headed for the VIP tent to grab a couple of beers while The Doobies took the stage. The boss and wife finally showed up and we hung with them until the boss had to be escorted by his wife out of the tent and towards some food to help moderate the booze he had consumed. It wasn’t helping, he was wobblin’. Sassy has seen first hand the boss when he has had a few too many. All the other people we came with disappeared into the crowd, leaving Priscilla and I pretty much on our own. We didn’t mind. The Doobies finished and we wandered around a bit until it was time for Skynyrd to hit the stage.
Yes that is the actual fire! It hasn’t rained here in quite a while, the fire danger is very high and we are in the middle of the woods with one exit road. We watched quite intently to see if the Fire Dept had shown up yet. The black, billowing smoke was as high as you could see into the night sky and filled with burning embers. This is all taking place while Skynyrd is in the throws of Freebird! Their guitars are screaming so loudly we never heard the fire truck arrive. It wasn’t until I saw the water shooting up into the trees trying to prevent the spread that I began to breath a little easier. The majority of the concertgoers didn’t even realize what was happening. They couldn't’t see it from their vantage point.
As Skynard hit the last wailing guitar licks I suggested to Priscilla that we head to the jeep because we might have trouble trying to get out. We walked to where the jeep was but it was gone. Really, it was gone! Priscilla and I just stood there looking at each other in disbelief. Had they really left us there, in an inferno, and gone home? I called the bosses wife and through the crackle of bad cell service, she confirmed they had indeed left us behind. I couldn’t quite get the gist of their reasoning for leaving us but it boiled down to Greg thought they better get while the getting was good. So much for Leave no Man Behind! She then suggested we walk from the concert about a mile to a restaurant (they wouldn’t allow traffic back that way due to the fire) and when they picked up their vehicle they would come back around and pick us up there. This is at 11:15pm, so with sand filled sandals, Priscilla and I hoofed it to the pick up point where they sat all cozy waiting for us. The really bizarre part of all of this is neither of them really apologized for leaving us behind. It was as though we were a just a second thought and not quite as important. It is interesting when your finally realize you are just a PEE-ON!
Charlie Daniels-Yes he is still alive!