I regret to inform you that this is yet another in a string of incoherent rants, (Number 19, to be precise), covering Reggae on the River, 2016. Purportedly the firsthand account of a once-respected journalist, whose judgment has long since been rendered questionable through habitual use of the Devil’s Lettuce, cannabis, the editors apologize in advance.
Bell Springs Mark and the Tent-Pole of Doom
A man’s tent is his castle. Stretched out luxuriously on a cot that was one inch shorter than I am, I had it good. It didn’t matter a bit to me that my nylon sleeping bag had a tendency to slide off the nylon pad that constituted the cot’s mattress.
|If I could, I would have brought the living room along...|
I only had to realign matters once per night, and that was after I had already surfaced.
I had the foresight to buy a duffle bag, just slightly smaller than Delaware, into which I was able to place the entire contents of both my chest-of-drawers and my closet. This is no mean feat considering that I have not thrown away one article of clothing in the last 35 years.
I just wanted to cover all contingencies, plus be able to clothe the homeless population of Garberville, should the need arise.
I did not have an air-conditioning unit, like the one in Bull’s tent, a perk that caused a few pricks in the balloon that constitutes Bull’s equanimity, the very first day.
It seems that Rick was supposed to hook up said air conditioning, but had gotten salty when Bull had given him the horn.
Parking, loosey goosey during the days leading up to the start of ROTR, got deadly serious once the public entered the venue. There were just too many instances of vehicles being left indiscriminately, inconveniencing those who remained to deal with the unwanted presence, to overlook obvious transgressions.
Rick had parked his truck haphazardly Wednesday night, and been given Bull’s blessing on condition that he get it out of there in a timely manner. A timely manner to Bull was that same night; to Rick it meant Free Parking.
When Bull woke Rick up Thursday morning with an early phone call and told him move the truck or have it towed, Rick got his panties in a bunch. He returned from the Benbow and removed the offending vehicle, but refused to follow through on getting Bull’s air-conditioning unit going.
That’s where Minnix comes in. Alex always factors into anything going on that involves techspertise, brains and quick reflexes. He is also the funniest human being I have ever met.
There was a length of 4-inch foil tubing involved, there was a vast wealth of personal experience and there was the knowledge that he was being counted on for the heavy lifting. After all, we are talking about the comfort of the Duchess here.
AnnaBryn was only female brave enough to grace our particular campsite with her presence. Bull’s better half, AnnaBryn’s comfort and welfare was uppermost in our collective minds. She represented that which elevated our campsite above the status of “a bunch of drunken dudes.”
In addition to no air conditioning, my tent lacked an ice chest the size of a small barge, like the one in Casey’s tent. No, mine was the standard-sized blue one, the one that had nothing but food in it, as boring as that sounds.
|That's Mike D. in the red apron, and Casey.|
Of course, after the first day, I had to send in a search party to try and find my ice chest, long since buried under a deluge of debris. My tent: so innocent in appearance from the outside, such a tsunami of disaster within its walls.
It is a source of comfort to me that I spare no detail when it comes to preparing for my four-day entrenchment. Besides the contents of my clothes closet, I brought a couple of full-length, hard-backed novels, my computer with cord(s), camera/cord, phone/cord, cribbage board/decks of cards, grinder, papers, three jars with three different strains of cannabis, a jug of Bell Springs water, and my San Francisco Giants bag.
You don’t want me to list the contents of that monstrosity; I am kind of afraid to even look.
My tent is a tent like most other tents, in that it is domed, has a rain flap, and has foot-thick walls, so that the late-night sounds of drunken partiers might be prevented from disturbing my beauty rest.
At least that’s what I wanted but they were out-of-stock.
There are bigger tents available and there are fancier ones on the market, but I like mine just fine. I just wish I could manage to avoid running into that stupid tent pole, right in the middle of my domed tent.
Sucker complicated my life the whole four daze, though those in the know maintain that that tent pole is like a lot of other baggage I carry around-all in my head.
It could be yes-it could be no. It could be just, maybe so.
Tomorrow: Irish coffee