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Aug 22 04 9:54 PM
Quote:Where do you even begin to recap the best weekend evah?
At the beginning right? I was born on....Ok, maybe not that far back. But I did feel like it was one big birthday present to me. Clay was a day late but I forgive him.
I am afraid this is going to be very long and the scary thing is that I know I will still forget half of what I wanted to say. There was just so much good and so many highlights. It was fricking fantabulous and just wow! Warning - gushing within. Could ya tell?
Clio - Friday - August 20th.
mmb40, MiniMichi and I headed down to Clio from Traverse City. It was going to be a big surprise for MiniMichi, but because I am not the perfect parent, about a week before, she found out she was going. My MIL apparently had said to my hubby that she didnât think that mm liked Clay Aiken that much. Yeah right. She wasn't even totally embarrassed by me because she was so focused on Clay. Whew!
We got a later start than we wanted but made good time although we got a little lost. We had scoped out the hotel (we thought) from the highway on our way down to Jackson the weekend before but the Comfort Inn is not the same as the Country Inn.
We pulled into the Country Inn & Suites finally and found the delightful didi46 and the wonderful webcats waiting in the lobby. You know as much as I was looking forward to seeing Clay again, seeing friends again and meeting new ones is right up there on my list.
The meers started trickling in - some more of the Candian contingent and musicmama arrived and started handing out nametags - well to MOST people. They were wonderful (thanks to her and Calliek ) but she should have know better not to lose the page that mine was on. I mean I NEED a laminated nametag. But I lurve her anyway. Hmmm come to think of it, mmb40's, NotBlindYetâs and my name tags were all on the same page and we just all happened to be sharing a room. Verrryyy Interesting.
Didnât have a lot of time before we headed over to the pre-concert dinner. It was wonderful btw (thanks Jammy) but I was so excited I could barely eat. Corabeth called and sent a long distance trout - heh. The look on didiâs face was priceless.
The directions to get to Clio via the back roads were wonderful but trying to find a place to park wasnât. We had a nearly full van of meerkats. A deputy (or reserve officer) that looked like he was about 12 and extremely glad that he was being replaced soon, asked if we were looking for handicapped parking (hey didi is the one that got the handicapped room) and when we said ânoâ, he asked what was the pass hanging around my neck was for. I hadnât taken off my ânon-laminatedâ name tag from dinner. We did consider just hanging it on the rearview mirror and taking our chances but instead backtracked and parked in a funeral home parking lot about a block or so away. Turned out to be pretty appropriate because after the concert I was dead.
Got in line with everyone else. Jerome came fairly nearby looking for someone. They were checking for cameras and no outside food or water was allowed in. We got there pretty early but it was fun standing around and chatting with everyone. They had made the menâs inside bathroom into a second womenâs bathroom and were making the men use the porta potties. Worked for me.
The merchandise lines werenât terrible but stayed pretty busy. We finally moved to our seats and Holy @#%$. Sorry but that is what I really said - in fact in might have been another word that came into my mind. We had row D (which is actually 5th row back because of a AA row) on the right side (if you faced the stage and about 5 or 6 in.) The stage was soooo close you felt like you could reach out and touch someone (and who would we want to be touching?). I was eeeeeee-ing in anticipation before the concert ever started because I realized just how close Clay was going to be. Thank you Karma and I will do my best to work it off. Of course having musicmama and institches next to us didnât hurt.
didi, mmb40 and the webcats were on the other side a couple rows back and it was fun seeing all the other CHâers that we had met.
Cherie was fine - I actually could understand her better than in Jackson but loud it certainly is. She didnât make us do the wave and I think she cut a song out of her set. I will cut her some slack because I know she probably doesnât speak a lot of English but her patter is almost identical every night. Makes you wonder if you tried to have a conversation with her if that is what you would get.
I wonât go song by song because I would have to be alive to do that. For whatever reason (thank you, thank you) Clay paid a LOT of attention to our side of the stage and he looked at us more than once and we were properly fangirly. It is true that I was practically pulling musicmamaâs pants off while she was smacking me in the shoulder and there was much eeeeee-ing going on.
He is so absolutely beautiful and sounded so wonderful. My disposable camera was possessed and kept snapping shots. I knew I should wait (because I am a doofus and only brought one of my cameraâs in) but he would come so close or the jumbotron close-ups were so breathtaking... I couldnât help it - that is why I am not a buzztechie or skatejoy (or any of the other excellent photographers here).
Clay DID talk to musicmama while she was doing her groovy dance moves. He also once pointed to mini-michi and once when someone yelled/shrieked âI love you Clayâ and he didnât understand, we enlightened him. (eeeeeee - I talked to Clay [/fangirly moment]
I was so over the moon that it is hard to concentrate on what parts stood out in the concert. Loved the banter but I have always loved to hear Clay speak and laugh. He did say Clio right although the guy that came out prior to it did say they were changing the name of the town to Clay-o.
RTM - he did something with his one finger on the mic - a split second and easily missed but OMG!. I looked at Institches and mouthed - âdid you see that?â and she said âg*ba8badbgâ - loosely translated. I took that as a âyesâ.
I wore shorts and a short sleeved shirt and I still was hot! *fans self* Whew!
The security people were telling people to sit down and reluctantly I did when I didnât want to at times and then would jump up again. I loved the whole thing. I thought he was in tremendous voice (and was NOT flat on Invisible - as much as I love him, I can admit when he is off a little and never noticed that).
Ok, and it looks like I am the only one that sees it this way (like that is a first - not) but when he laughed in ISY, to me it seemed like a âfunnyâ laugh. Like he was cracking up at something. After the song he went into a little spiel about changing the sets up every night and the back up singers not knowing where to stand. So I dunno.
YWT, TITN, Solitaire - just beautiful. Helped a lot that he came down a level for TITN and Solitaire. Invisible rocked as always. There was no way I was sitting down for that.
Because I am a doofus (see above), I ran out of film too early and since MusicMama was getting the evil eye from the Tommy Lee wanna be security guy and Chuck (mini-Jerome) we stopped getting pictures after RTM. I am also a doofus because I didnât hear her say they were going to the busses where she was touched multiple times by the Aiken. My timing is perfect - perfectly bad that is.
I know this has been discussed but I have to put my .02 about crying girl because I was there. First of all, she didnât look/sound 16 as she was keening and had mascara running down her face. Second, she wasnât merelyoff on the grass sobbing quietly but sitting smack dab in the middle of the damn walkway where she could have been stepped on/tripped over. I donât begrudge her feeling overwhelmed or disappointed but I was afraid for her. Most likely she is over it and feels silly but even my 13 year old was aghast at her behavior. Doesnât make her freaky or dangerous - I used to be the queen of âgetting hopes up only to be dashedâ but it just caught us off guard a little. I hope she has come to terms with it. NotBlindYet and Mini-michi saw her the next night so I guess she stayed a fan.
My daughter said that a couple people stopped her and asked where she got the back stage pass or accused her of trying to sneak backstage. Guess that means those name-tags were pretty special. Also I had Waldo with me and heard someone say they thought he was real. Oh yeah, I always bring live animals to concerts.
The after party was fun - thanks to Xfileluv for setting it up and for whoever provided all the yummy snacks. We did dabble into the Cinnamon Treasure Trail drinks but we heeded the warnings about them. Musicmama did touch me with the hands that touched the Aiken so I felt better - only not. *g*. We werenât even blasting Clay music - just a lot of meerkats chattering but I guess that can get loud. All they had to do was say something - geesh.
Oh I thought this was interesting:
"I was struck by how nice the drivers are. If you put on your turn signal, they let you change names."
So what name did you pick? Hee.
Aug 23 04 7:19 AM
Aug 24 04 1:00 AM
I was there with three friends for both concerts. One from North Carolina, one from Michigan, one from California and myself from Florida. After the concert on Friday night, we became separated but we all headed down to the buses. By the time my friend Karen and I got down there, the place was mobbed. We stood behind a chain link fence which was about 6 feet high and was on the side of the bus where the door opening to the bus was. Anyway, Clay came out surrounded by security and he walked over to the other side of the bus to greet the fans. In a very short while we saw Clay with Jerome behind him urging Clay up onto the bus. Clay actually had one foot on the step and was preparing to walk up the steps when he turned and saw us standing there. (Probably 10 people at the chain link fence at the most). My friend and I were the first two gals and the others were along side of us.
Clay saw us and we were smiling at him. He smiled at us and got down off the steps and walked right over to us. I don't know what Jerome thought because I only had eyes for Clay. Anyway, he walked right up to us and took our hand and he looked directly into my eyes and thanked us for coming. He also took my friend's hand but she was so excited, she looked away. Anyway, I looked right into his eyes and couldn't mumble anything cause I was in a complete state of numbness. I do remember his gorgeous eyes, the soft, gentle touch of his hands on mine and his beautiful southern drawl. He walked down the fence line and greeted the fans that were there. He then made his way back to the bus and off they went. Needless to say, I had tears streaming down my face. That man is so beautiful.
Now, our friends who we had been separated from came up to us and they were standing right where the incident happened.
It seems that when Clay reached out to greet a fan, someone grabbed his arm and attempted to pull him into the crowd. Jerome sprung into action and promptly removed Clay and herded him toward the bus. There was a little girl there about seven years old who saw what happened and she started crying because she wanted to meet Clay but whoever this person was that grabbed Clay ruined it for her and the rest of the fans on that side of the bus.
Jerome DID NOT push Clay onto the bus and our Clay has a mind of his own. As I said, he started to board the bus,turned and saw us standing there and that precious man, even though he just had a horrible fright, came down off the stairs of the bus and made a beeline straight for us. He was all smiles and gorgeous. What really impressed me the most was, it just goes to show how very much he loves his fans, because he did not have to come over to us. We were not yelling or anything. We just stood there with our hand through the fence and waving to him.
I am so in awe of him even more after finding out what had happened to him and he STILL cared enough to come over and greet us.
The next night we went down to the buses again to the very same spot we were in the night before. This time when Clay came out, he came right over to our side of the fence and we touched his hand a second time. It was wonderful but security was sure pushing him along the line this time. As for the little girl. Her dream did come true. When Clay saw her the second night, he bent down, took her hand and said
"Hello Darlin". He is a real prince of princes. That man's heart just overflows with love for his fans and no one can ever say anything different. He truly loves each and every one of us.
I won't recap the concerts in Clio because everyone else has done such a great job. All I can do is echo everything wonderful thing that has been said.
I'm sorry this is so long but that is truly what happened Friday night and yes, this time, my other two friends also got to touch Clay on Saturday night.
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