HAPPY BIRTHDAY, PAIGE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was one helluva ride from Norfolk to NYC. It felt like the damn driver was never on the interstate for more than 3 miles at a time. As if he took every 2 lane road there was between there and here at 100 fucking miles per hour. Idiot. He's an awful driver. He drives with no concern whatsoever for the fact that he's hauling people, not freight.
Anyway, we pull up to the hotel just after 8am. I have to do the check-in because Gratton flew home to see his family for Easter – we've got 2 days off in a row. Yay!
We bought the rooms for last night, so all the room keys are ready. I distribute to everyone on both buses, and then head to my room.
Open the door and I’m nearly knocked down by the stench of the room. For some reason, I've been given a smoking room. Ugh! Back down to reception to change, then head to my new non-smoking room. Great view facing north. No direct sunlight will hit my room, but plenty of ambient light as there's no tall building across from me for a block or so – I'm on the 12th floor overlooking 47th Street.
We're at the DoubleTree in Times Square. I mean right in the HEART of Times Square. Two days off in the heart of the city!
I head up the street to the Applejack Diner for breakfast, then grab a Starbucks and walk a couple of miles, just chillin' and people-watching. Make a pass by Ye Olde Tripple Inn, where I'll wind up drinking either later today or tomorrow (or both). The canopy out front's in a sad state of repair, looking as though the place might be closed. I can't really see anything through the gate or beyond the windows behind the gate. I'll come back by later.
Back to my room. I need a nap, bad. Damn bus driver.
Nap for about an hour and make a couple of phone calls. Can't get ahold of Jimmy Archey, but Kenny Soule calls me back about 15 minutes later. Kenny is a drummer extraordinaire, ex-Nantucket, PKM and Dag. He's picking me up later on the way to his gig in Hoboken. His band's playing about 8pm or so for a couple of hours. That'll be fun. We've been talking for a couple of weeks about me maybe coming out to see he and Anne's house they just bought, but I don't know if that'll happen today. They haven't moved in just yet.
I head out later to hit the Tripple again, but they look to be closed today. Hmmmm…
I go in search of another bar to kill time in until Kenny picks me up, but I'm so bummed out that I wind up just walking around the west side for over an hour.
I eventually find a spot on the corner of 9th Ave and something. Settle in to a corner seat at the bar with an eye on the door. I order a Boddington's draft and sure as hell, the instant the bartender puts it down in front of me, Kenny calls and is on the next block. I slam half the beer, tip the man, and head out to the curb, jump into Kenny's van, and off we go. He's blasting the new Yayhoo's CD as we're heading down the street. Good stuff.
Traffic on 9th is all screwed up up as we approach the tunnel – complete deadlock. He pulls to the curb and we bounce into Burritoville to grab something we can eat and roll with. Killer food. Sure wish they had a couple of these in Raleighwood.
Finally make it through the tunnel and into Hoboken. The club they're playing is Scotland Yard, a basement bar in a cool neighborhood right near the Path station. I help Kenny load in, meet the other bandmembers, and settle in at the bar for an evening of blues, rock, and Budweisers.
Kenny drops me back by my hotel sometime around midnight, I think…