11:26 a.m. - 2005-06-20
\"We got back to the party...we've been on the road we're kinda dirty\"
After BFRB and I woke up from our nap, we
were hot and sweaty but nonetheless feeling somewhat closer to human. As the sun started to set
and the temperature began to drop into the non-sweltering range, we decided to go see what was
up at Centeroo.
Here are some pictures of the fountain. Yes, it is a giant mushroom.
There were assorted bands playing in This Tent, That Tent, and The Other Tent. That’s really
what they were called. See?
I should state at this point that I do not believe one single person at Bonnaroo was sober. Ever.
Pick an illicit substance, and someone was either selling, buying, or on it...probably all three.
However, the guy we met at Centeroo on Thursday evening was just good old-fashioned drunk
off his ass.
I suppose in a vaguely overgrown frat-boy way, he was sort of cute. We had just purchased
some beers, and he offered to buy us another. Never being the sort to turn down a free drink, we
(and our camp neighbor, Tim, who was hanging with us), followed him to the microbrew tent,
and sampled a beer called “Sweetwater 420". Or maybe it was “Magic Hat Some Long German
Name.” I don’t remember. Anyway, Drunk Boy immediately begins slobbering over BFRB. We
find a picnic table that only has a few nasty funnel cake remains on it, and cop a squat.
At this point, I should tell you that chairs of any kind are a seriously premium item at the Roo.
Aside from those few picnic tables, and a few tables in “Jack’s (as in Jack Daniels) Tent,” there
was nary a chair in sight. Of course, this early in the game, people were pretty ambulatory,
because they had not yet spent three days on nature hikes in the mud.
Drunk Boy keeps buying more beer. And slobbering over BFRB. We ascertain that he is a 36
year old attorney from DC (I think). BFRB keeps telling him to quit with the slurred
compliments, hand-kissing, and other generally annoying activities. He doesn’t. We get up
from the table and meander towards This Tent. At this point, we whisper to Tim that we’re
going to try and ditch the dork, and he can meet us at the porta-potties in 10. We then speed-run
through the crowd. He keeps up. We finally make it to the bathrooms, and hide for a few
minutes. We see Drunk Boy and Tim having a conversation. Finally, Drunk Boy gets a clue and
staggers off to join his alleged friends somewhere.
Tim explains that he finally straight-up had to tell the guy he was being ditched. We thank him
for his efforts. Eventually, after figuring out the basic layout of Centeroo, we take the three-mile
hike back to our tent.
Friday, we wake up to the sound of rain, but we’re mostly hangover free. Of course, we had to
pee like racehorses. BFRB, at this point, decides to use the woods because the potties are a long
walk. I’m not that brave yet. I take a little hike, use the bathroom, and then decide to wander a
bit further to the wash station and rinse my hair.
The wash station has plenty of sinks, along with two giant tubs with a circle of faucets in the
middle. The water is icy cold and smells like boiled ass. I manage to get my hair wet, shampoo,
and mostly rinse. It felt pretty good, but was not an everyday-type activity. I hike back to camp,
we get ready, and head to Centeroo in short order to hear Allison Krauss & Union Station.
These are some photos of the walk. Note the scary wooden planks and the beginnings of the
mud. This was not normal mud. It was this gray, slimy, sticky nasty spooge. I was wearing my
flip flops. It was kind of bad on the way there...and really bad on the way back.
The music on Friday was first-rate. We caught the beginning of Joss Stone’s set...she was
incredible. Note the tree in the picture, as it will play a role in Saturday’s adventures.
Then, we headed over to the main stage for some Allison Krauss and some snacky food.
She was excellent, and so was her band...however, she did a lot of “showcasing” of their talents
and didn’t sing nearly enough.
Tim was hanging out with us again, so after Allison, he wanted to go check out John Prine...so
we did. That was a good show, also, but it had started to rain again. We were kind of on the
edge of the tent, and kept trying to crowd some people so we could (a) see and (b) not be quite so
After that, it was time for Ray Lamontagne. He was yummy. You can’t really tell that from
these pictures, but he WAS.
Finally, it was time for BFRB’s big show: Dave Matthews Band.
I wasn’t too much of a Dave fan before this concert. It’s that stupid horn. But really, the show
was amazing...they did an incredible cover of “Time of the Season,” played some other songs I
actually knew, and made use of the talents of Robert Randolph and Warren Haynes (from Gov’t
Mule.) Yes, there was a little gratuitous jamming, but it wasn’t bad. Also, despite the presence
of the horn, it wasn’t nearly so obnoxious live. This makes me wonder if the horn guy is bribing
their record producer to showcase his track, or something.
When you’re dealing with a band like DMB, you’ve got a whole audience full of groupies who
think they can predict the lineup at every concert. Two guys behind us were arguing, pre-show,
about the opener. “Man, he always opens with an instrumental.” “Yeah, but he sometimes opens
with something upbeat.”
They were both wrong, and after the first song, they were like “oh, yeah, I totally knew that, and
it was perfect.”
The set started late and ended early, but it was still 2+ hours long. For the duration of the show,
people were throwing piles of glow-sticks through the crowd.
Now, on the list of “no-no’s” provided by the management, “throwing glow sticks” was deemed
dangerous and was not to be tolerated. Clearly, the crowd ignored this memo. I don’t think the
pictures are very clear, but seriously, there were hundreds of them flying around. We were glad
we were mostly out of the line of fire. It was cool to watch them spinning and whirling in the
After some tie-dye purchasing, we decide to head back towards the tent.
That was the worst walk of my life.
It had been steadily sprinkling all day long. The “roads” had been somewhat passable in the
morning, but by 1 a.m., they were disgusting. These pictures cannot really convey how
treacherous it was. BFRB had on her Teva-ish sandals, which actually had some traction. My
flip flops were not up to the challenge. Every step I took, I slid. Or stuck. The planks were
slippery. The roads were a mess. And I was deathly afraid of falling, because I knew there was
no shower anywhere, and that I would be miserable. The whole walk “home” was one long
panic attack. BFRB didn’t understand why I kept telling her to slow down. She really wasn’t
walking that fast. I felt awful, because on the way there, I kept slowing things up, and I felt like
I was really a burden. It wasn’t a matter of not being able to go the distance in an exercise-type
sense....more that every step was anxiety-inducing. Once I stopped hyperventilating long
enough to actually convey the problem to BFRB, she started freaking as much as I was.
Once we finally were back in safe territory, we discussed our plans for the following day. We
decided that sobriety had no place in our plans, and that we were going to have a good day. We
did. Stay tuned for the next installment...
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