I have lived a wonderful, eventful life. The one that has not managed to make its way onto my busy calendar is an outdoor concert. About twenty years ago I did manage to attend one at …
I have lived a wonderful, eventful life. The one that has not managed to make its way onto my busy calendar is an outdoor concert. About twenty years ago I did manage to attend one at Roger Williams Park at the Temple of Music with a few nurses from work. They brought snacks and wine and comfortable folding chairs. Unschooled in the practice of outdoor performances, I went sans food, drink and chair and sat on the grassy hillside until my bottom was sore and I fervently wished that the concert wasn’t two hours long. Fast forward to last Thursday. Hubby and I, vacationing in New Hampshire, decided to attend a concert of a Roomful of Blues, (a Rhode Island group, none-the-less) at Cranmore Mountain. He saw it advertised in the local newspaper, and we decided to try out this new activity. That particular day, rain dotted the landscape, off and on, for the better part of the day and we did not confirm our plans until the weather ap on his phone showed clear skies for the evening. In preparation for this event, we had gone shopping to multiple stores for comfortable chairs, uncharacteristically not purchasing the cheapest ones, but buying ones with padded seats and easy assembly. (There is nothing I hate worse than trying to fit a canvas folding chair back into its pouch, practically standing on my head, and having it get stuck.) Because our expenses at this age are minimal, the least we could do was acquire cozy chairs on which to sit for hours.
We drove to the ski resort and paid our ten-dollar, senior citizen entrance fee, tickled that we get a discount for being old. Searching the large, grassy area, not yet filled with other people, we placed our chairs on the edge of the ski slope facing the stage. With plenty of time to grab something to eat, Hubby delighted in eating a smoked sausage sandwich with peppers and onions and my choice of a Caesar salad wrap was perfect. As we both munched away, it was easy to notice that most of the concert participants had brought coolers full of food. The couple in front of us had shrimp cocktail with all the trimmings, bottles of wine coolers, and what looked like little scrumptious cherry cheesecakes. The couple next to us brought crackers with fancy cheeses, meats, and other condiments such as olives, with strawberries and grapes for dessert. Sitting near these food connoisseurs inspired me to use my imagination to bring a fancy spread the next time we attend a concert.
The variety of food choices matched the assortment of chairs that multiplied on the lawn. Some people had “backpack” chairs, fold-up chairs that were worn as backpacks so their hands would be free to carry the cooler, or wave freely at fellow friends also attending the concert. These were sturdy and comfortable, and most of them had a side table on which to put their nourishment. Some people had folding camp chairs, and some had old-fashioned webbed chairs. Only one poor fellow sat on the ground.
Once fed and situated, the concert began. I am embarrassed to say that I had never seen a Roomful of Blues concert previously, and their exceptional tunes rocked my world. They were SO GOOD and the time flew by! They were captivating from beginning to end. Even though the concert was outside where Wi-Fi was readily available, I had no desire to look at my phone, instead letting the songs mesmerize me. Our toes, along with the toes of every other participant, tapped in tune to the music, and Hubby’s shoe fell off with his enthusiastic beats. I jokingly told him he could join the impromptu dancers by the side of the stage, but he reneged.
Near the end of the concert, Hubby gently took ahold of my hand, kissed it and held it. He was happy, as was I. Although there was some regret that we had not previously gone to such concerts, we both smiled knowing that this would be a favored activity in the future.
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