Thursday, October 8, 2009

Jole Blon in Tampa!

My girlfriend, Kit (yes the same Kit) invited me to Florida for Tampa and Sunrise... As you can imagine... I couldn't say no!! lol And I'm so glad I didn't: Kit picked me up at the airport and we called Leigh and easily talked him into meeting us over at the venue to check out the tailgating possibilities. First we stopped at the box office to see how many GA had been sold... 1700... ut oh. Well we thought we would walk over (inside) and check out the pit area... we didn't get far before we were asked where we thought that we were going... we explained that we were just looking around... asking him if he would give us a lift (tour) in his golf cart. He pointed to the gate and told us he would drive us to the exit... which was about 10 yards... we laughed and I asked him if he would take us the long way! He told us to get in!! He then took us on a tour of the venue riding us all around the seated area... pointing to the pit... he explained that seats had been removed to make it bigger. We praised him as he dropped us off at the exit... He was so sweet. Once we saw the size of the pit we knew that where ever we wound up it would be great!! So the next morning we took our time and Kit showed me the Golf coastline before we headed to meet up with her baby sister for the show. It is lovely... the sand so soft... It reminded me of how much I love the ocean. What I am doing living inland again, I'll never know. Kit has a lovely home and family... it was so cool listening to their stories of moving to Florida from Bruce's hometown. Off to the show where we met up with Bill aka Weak Knees Willie... who had even many stories to share as we waited for the lucky lottery number to be drawn. 599... shit... just behind us... that put us at the back of the line... but wait... they had only given out 590 bands... how could that be? After much turmoil the number was redrawn and we still missed the "front" of the line. When we got inside I wound up behind a 6' guy who let me stand in front of him but the guy and his dad in front of him was even taller than him but they were very kind and let me stand next to them!! It was My Lucky Day as I was moved into the second row!! It was a very friendly crowd... where I was standing... with Mike (the school teacher who leads the Jukebox Graduates) and his son right in front of me and Ken to my left... Bruce and The E Streeters gave Tampa a beautiful show... even though it was very hot and sticky... but Bruce assured us that they LOVED hot and sticky!! There was definetly a bond between Bruce and Tampa brought on by the SuperBowl "roadies"... his "calvary." Kit was one of them. Then came request time... we held up our signs... this time... I asked for What Love Can Do... Bruce looked right at it and pointed as he assured me, "We're not gonna do that one!" :o Humph... I didn't think he would... but I had to try!! Bruce picked rather cool requests... one a total surprise that no one possibly could have expected especially me... since I had just been saying how cool it would be to get All Or Nothin' At All!!

Then Bruce choose another request... one that I never thought I'd ever get to hear... Jole Blon. Once again... with their magic... Bruce and his band took me back 30 years... I was so glad that I had my camera with me!!

The tour was just getting better and better... remaining steadfast with She's The One and Born To Run... Thunder Road... and Racin' In The Streets. Racin' has always held a special place in my heart cause... well... they called my dad, "Sonny" even though his name was Sal... everyone called him, "Sonny" and I always imagined that she wasn't an engine that Bruce and Dad were building straight outa scratch. ;) Then another of my favorites... Point Blank... it was perfect... making the heat an essential part of our night.... yes, I do still say my prayers... little darlin'.

The band was tight... and in a good mood. It seemed as though they really were enjoying the "hot & sticky!" and time flew by way to fast... the encores were almost over when Bruce motioned for several of us to come up on stage to dance with him... and many did! Of course... I didn't! Maybe someday I'll get up the nerve! :o

When one man seemed like he wanted some "extra" attention... Bruce swept him off his feet to help him exit the stage!! We roared with laughter!! Clarence played wonderfully... he looked so big from where I stood... at his feet!! What an amazing presence he possesses... I am still in awe of The Big Man! He smiled all night... occassionally stopping to add a little E Street Attitude as he wiggled... I giggle... He was so cool... flirting and dancing with his fans!

The show closed with a beautiful beautiful Thunder Road... which left me in tears waving goodbye to the band... and to my medicine... I took a deep breath and knew it was all gonna be alright. I slowly left passing the soundboard on the way... hoping for another setlist for my collection... this time there were none left... my ticket stub would have to do. After the show Kit, Terri, Bill and I hung out in the parking lot... ooowin' and awwin' over the last 3 hours as we helped Leigh and Jan finish off the Margarita's... we didn't stay late cause we had a show the next day... and a long drive to get there!! The next morning we were up and on our way to Sunrise, Florida craving more E Street Magic!!

Sunrise, Florida

Would Bruce pull a rabbit out of his hat at Sunrise? I soon learned the trick to paperless ticketing is to bring the correct credit card with you! Which I had not done. It dawned on me shortly after I had gotten my wristband for the lottery. When I realized it I went to the box office hoping that there would be something that could be done. They told me which card I had used and sure enough I had purposefully left that card at home... not wanting to travel with all of my cards... they also told me that it was totally up to Tom... who was "in charge" of the lottery... so there I was at the mercy of Tom... who right from the very first time I had met him DID NOT like me... I had tried to introduce myself to him and give him one of my cards... and he told me, "I know who you are and I know what you want." LOL Holy shit... and I was at his mercy!! Well I tucked my tail between my legs and went to him and told him I had left the correct card at home... I was on his list as an original ticket buyer and was obviously not a scalper... and he had already given me a lottery wristband... but did that matter? Not at all... he looked at me and said with no regard to the miles or money I had spent getting there, "then you are disqualified from the lottery." :o "Fuck YOU!" was my first thought... but I suppressed that thought and tried to talk reason to him... I tried to explain that I wasn't conning the system... but he didn't care... I was out... and he "dismissed" me... :o Well... I didn't buy his answer and got back in line where my number was and started praying... with my hands on my hips... now what was I gonna do? I knew that because I had the wrong card my number would be picked to be in the pit... but I was gonna get left out cause Tom had no idea WHO I AM!! Does he not know that I was born with the power or a locomotive?! And sure enough I was one of the "lucky lottery numbers" and so I prayed some more. Then I remembered Dana showing me her cut up credit card and her telling me that she had to just tell them the number on the card... they could enter it and BINGO!! I called my son, Joshua, and he read me the numbers off of the card... I wrote them down and waited for my turn to be let in. No tricks... but definitely like magic I was in... Tom who? :p Yes I can look back and it seems funny but at the time I was in tears... it was not a very good thing to go through before a "Dream" show. A couple deep breaths and maybe I could shake it off... I had a good spot in the pit... mid way back... between Bruce & Clarence... right in front of Nils... let it rock!! And rock it did! I love Night... and tonight it was so appropriate... Max's fierce banging helped to crush some of the "paperless" bricks.

Right into Cover Me... wow!! This was gonna be a good one!! Everyone seemed to be in a good mood... but to be honest the signs were starting to annoy me. There was one in particular that kept going up each time I wanted to record or take a picture... time after time it went up during Working On A Dream... and like I said... it was pretty annoying... then much to my surprise and pleasure Bruce yells to the person holding the sign, "Give me that sign!" takes it... and we get Sherry Darlin'! (and the sign is out of the way!)

We got some real treasures like Be True, So Young & In Love, and Then She Kissed Me.

When my daughter's favorite song, Waiting On A Sunny Day began I quickly called her so she could listen... oh how she loves that song! Thunder Road once again closed the show... and once again I waved goodbye to the band... tears streaming down my face.

What a wonderful time I had in "hot and sticky" Florida...

For the invite, Kitty...

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