Archive | September, 2013

Trapped on an island in Texas

16 Sep

The weather  in Texas is very different than in Missouri (thank you, Captain Obvious).  I say that because  I learned it the hard way in one of my trips to Corpus Christi to play a show.

When you live in Missouri, you deal with every possible weather element out there, except hurricanes–snow storms, ice storms, hail storms, tornadoes, thunder storms, hot weather, cold weather, humid weather, even earthquakes (there is a section of Missouri lying on a fault line).

In South Texas, they are only equipped to deal with heat (and flash floods/hurricanes, i guess, but who’s counting?). Yes, it gets very, very hot in The Lone Star state, but when the rare cold weather comes through, the whole area shuts down. Like I said, I learned this the hard way.

It was the middle of winter in Texas and I was playing a show when a mild winter cold front was moving in. I was in my second set on Padre Island–a secluded section of Texas with a bridge a half a mile long serving as the only road on or off the island–when I overheard two natives to the island saying the bridge was going to be closed.  Being from Missouri, I heard this and thought it was a ridiculous notion. Why would a city close an entire bridge just because some cold weather was moving in?  Silly natives!  What a bunch of jokesters!

I finished up my show and headed towards the bridge only to find it was, in fact, closed down. There were two patrol cars blocking entry to the bridge with their lights blazing. Being the Midwesterner I was, I thought I could convince them I was the best tested driver on the island and could easily make it over the bridge with no troubles. They didnt care. “No one is crossing this bridge. The roads are too slick. You’ll have to wait until noon tomorrow”

I tried my best to convince them that I had seen worse conditions than this every other day while living in Missouri, but they weren’t going for it, so I had to get a motel room for the night.

At first, it seemed like a little adventure for me. I’d stay the night on the island and enjoy a little “me time”, but as the night turned into morning, I grew impatient.

My shotty motel room turned into a prison, confining me as I waiting for parole from the bridge police.  My only source of entertainment was a crappy tv from the 90s playing TV shows from the 80s and awful grub from the motel vending machine.

By noon the next day , the roads were merely wet from the slight sleeting the night before, but low and behold, the patrol cars were still blocking the road.

“You’ll have to wait until tomorrow to leave the island. The bridge will remain closed until noon THE NEXT DAY,” they told me. This was ridiculous!  I felt like I was living through a bad dream!  I had another show to do later that night, but I was stuck on this island–all because I didn’t believe those islanders when they said the bridge would be closed the night before. If I had only listened to them and left the show early!!  Now I was looking at spending another night on this god-forsaken island and the only thing stopping me were two patrol cars and a slightly wet bridge!

Luckily, I found a ferry way over on the other side of the island that would take me across to the mainland–or as I liked to call it, freedom.  I added another two hours to my trip home, but was able to escape the island of bad winter drivers and barely make it to my other show that night.

So the moral to the story is, if the islanders drop you a piece of inadverted advice to leave their island ASAP, do it. Don’t think, just do it!!!!