Thursday, December 15, 2005

Stuck in a weekend

Thursday December 8, 2005 3:30 pm:
Elizabeth to her boss: Can I get my paycheque tonight so I don't have to wait till tomorrow to deposit it because I work 3-11 and I wont be able to deposit it until after work.
boss: No we don't do that. (I knew they did because they have done it before. What I didn't know was that he was joking. I would have argued, but I didn't know he was joking, so I didn't.)

Friday December 9, 2005 11:25 pm:
Elizabeth makes a deposit at the local ATM. The $100.00 becomes available immediately, and the rest will be deposited on the next business day, Monday, according to the printout from the ATM and the internet.

Saturday December 10 2005:
Nothing important happens

Sunday December 11 2005:
Elizabeth prepares for a trip to Charlotte to Meet U2 and try and get an autograph. Not enough money for a ticket, Elizabeth packs light, and no cash as she has her debit card to pay for gas. She is very aware that she will not be seeing the show, but would like someone to get a shirt or keychain for her at the show. Figures she can get cash when she gets there to get someone to get it for her. *mental note Must learn to schmooze* Packs a suitcase for a place she's never been, a place that has to be believed to be seen.

Monday December 12, 2005 7:15 am:
Elizabeth borrows her dad's car because her car worries her when she drives it long distances. She fills the tank with 16.00 worth of gas, and takes off toward Charlotte a place she has never been.

Monday December 12: 10:45 am:
Elizabeth arrives in Charlotte after a rough trip fighting with other travelers who can't figure out cruise control. Elizabeth is frustrated, but tenatively arrives at her hotel after looking for 15 minutes. Politely she asks if it is okay to check in early, as she knows that checkin time is probably 3pm. Prepared for a no, the GSR says yes, but not without an eyeroll, and a snort. Too excited to care, Elizabeth parts ways with the bitchy lady, and marvels at the extravagant hotel.
Monday December 12, 11:00 am:
Elizabeth walks down to the Charlotte arena where U2 is scheduled to play in 10 hours. She learns that the band has been doing sound checks early this trip, so she goes down by the bus bay and waits to see her heroes up close, and meet them in person.

Monday December 12 3:00 pm:
Elizabeth decides it's a good idea to get some cash for the people she has been talking to, her new friends, to get a tshirt for her. She goes to the atm, and the funds from her paycheque are not available. She returns to her post, bummed, but not hopeless.

Monday December 12 4:30 pm:
K(c)athy and Linda decide Elizabeth has to see this show, weather or not she has a ticket. Each give her $10.00 (the only money Elizabeth now has) and tell her to buy a ticket from a scalper right before the show starts, or right after the show starts.

Monday December 12 4:45pm:
PR guy for U2 comes and tells us that U2 are not doing a sound check, and will not arrive until about 7:00. Elizabeth's new friends decide to go back into the line, and tell me to come by before 6:00 when they open the door. Elizabeth decides to wait it out.

Monday December 12 5:30pm:
it begins to rain, and get really really cold. Elizabeth continues to wait.

Monday December 12 6:45pm:
U2's personal bodyguard informs us that the band wont be signing autographs because bono is meeting with Jesse helms and is already late for the dinner. Immediately after, bono and the band arrive in a red suburban and a big black car with tinted windows. Bono waves and
Elizabeth TRIES to get a photo (haven't found out if I did yet) and the band goes back in, not to be seen again till after the show.

Monday December 12 6:50pm:
depressed and cold Elizabeth makes the trek back to her hotel to cry out the magnificent failure this trip has become. The only reason she went to Charlotte, the ONLY reason, was to get an autograph, and it has not happened. She has only 2o dollars in her pocket, and has not eaten all day. Bank of America informed her that her funds will not be available till 12:00am because she made the deposit in south Carolina and their rules are different than anyone else's. Rude front desk people snicker as I walk through the lobby with my coat soaked and hair matted.

Monday December 12 8:30:
Elizabeth talks to her mother (actually one of two phone calls I really did make) and gets the inspiration to go back to the show and see if she can haggle the t-shirt people down to $20.00.

Monday December 12 9:05:
Elizabeth arrives at the venue once again, in a fresh dry coat, and fresh dry hair, and wanders around. A scalper approaches her and says, "I got floor seats $150.00" Elizabeth cooly replies, "I don't want floor seats, and that's more than I can spend." Scalper: "I got this right here, up a little high, but a good seat (and it was) for $150.00." Elizabeth: "I don't have $150.00. So I cant afford it." Scalper: "How much can you afford?" Elizabeth: "$20.00. that's all I have to my name." Scalper:"Here you go young lady."

Monday December 12 9:06:
Elizabeth walks into the door on the verge of tears with her backpack and camera she knows they wont let her have in the show. The polite arena people scan her ticket and tell her she can have the one camera, and can be escorted to the service desk to have her bag checked. Elizabeth checks to make sure she heard correctly, and starts to cry the minute the man says, off you go. Sometimes you can't make it on your own is heard in the background. How appropriate.

Monday December 12 9:10- 11:00

Monday December 12 2005 11:05 pm:

Elizabeth runs back down to the bus bay during the last song of the show to see if she can talk one of the band members into an autograph. She arrives, only to see Larry in his car waving at her as he leaves. She also sees bono with a towel around his neck in the red suburban he arrived in.

Monday December 12 2005 11:07:

The kind heart that gave her the $10.00 for the ticket walks down the sidewalk. Elizabeth recognizes her immediately and runs up to her to give her a hug, and whispers in her ear that she made it into the show. As every u2 fan knows, this is an amazing feat. All are cheers.

Tuesday December 13 2005 12:00 am:

Elizabeth begins the scary ass journey back to her hotel with creepy people following her. Elizabeth kicks herself for being so stupid. at least she doesn't have any cash on her.

Tuesday December 13 2005 10:45 am:

Elizabeth wakes up to find her bill under her door. $65.00 worth of phone calls make her legs go weak. She only talked to her mom for 10 minutes on that one call, and her brother the other call. The rest of the time they called her. She had a secret way of calling them. She called, let it ring once, then hung up. Confused, Elizabeth calls the front desk only to be confronted by the bitchy employee from the day before. After much deliberation and some hidden tears, Elizabeth gets the several $6.17 connection fees removed from her debit card. (Thanks also to her boss) Elizabeth then discovers that there is mold on the wall. She wisely snaps some photos of it and makes a mental note to never stay at a hotel where it's impossible to be treated like a human, even if a fellow employee.

Tuesday December 13 2005 12:45pm:

Elizabeth gets on the road for home. She doesn't stop for gas, and therefore does not stop for cash because she just wants to get out of Charlotte. Immediately before she crosses into the south Carolina land, the car in front of her intentionally runs over a very large (16in x 24 in) piece of particle board, flipping it up into elizabeths dad's car. It hits the windshield, and (I assume) goes up and over, as well as under the car. Elizabeth looks in her rearview only to see smoke. Believing she has a flat tire, she keeps the car in control and tries to exit. The asshole trucker next to her wont let her through. (and to him, right now, I'd like to say fuck you, and I'm glad I wasn't hurt.)

Tuesday December 13 2005 12:47pm:

Elizabeth pulls into the south Carolina welcome center only yards from the border. She inspects the car, no dents, no flat tire, but the engine was leaking oil at an alarming rate. A nice couple stops and offers help, but wiser than that, Elizabeth only asks to borrow a cell phone and enough money for a payphone call. She calls her mother, at work, and they talk out what to do. Elizabeth figures the oil pan on the car is FUBAR and doesn't want to risk driving it too far (of course.) The couple offers her some money (5.00) and she regretfully accepts, figuring that's lunch after all. After she parts ways with the nice couple, she goes into the welcome center and informs them of her situation. The gentleman tells her she is only 1 mile away from the next exit which might have some food and information. He then asks her what kind of car she is driving. A single tear escapes and she mutters, "my dad's ford." The man begins to glow and says, "now now, don't cry. up there at that next exit is a dealership with a service station. you can make it up there." Elizabeth sucks air, makes a phone call to her mom and tells her where she'll be, and rushes back to the car.

Tuesday December 13 1:03 pm:

Elizabeth approaches her car only to find a little tiny old man taking a look at it. "looks like you've got some oil leaking." "Yes," she replies. "You need to put oil in it." "Yes, sir, but I have no oil. I'm hoping the service station at the dealership a mile uproad can help me." "Do you have any oil?" "no sir." "oh." At this point, Elizabeth realizes her wheels and the back of the car are COVERED in oil. damn. She bids the old man adieu (only after he asks her if she has oil about 6 more times.)

Tuesday December 13 1:05 pm:

Elizabeth starts on the road to the next exit. She starts the car, and it willingly goes down the ramp. She stays at a slow pace, and sure enough, there was the sign "exit 3/4 a mile." She limps into the service station, asks the gentleman to help her, and calls her mom. He says he can help.

Tuesday December 13 2:00pm:

Service man informs Elizabeth that all is well, that it was just the oil filter, not the pan, that was busted (off) and it is fixed, oil is changed (dad was gonna do that when I got back) and I could be on my way. It only cost $46.00 (CHEAP) and off I went.

Tuesday December 13 5:00 pm:

Arrived in Charleston. Home. Happy, Healthy. Saw U2. Holy shit.

Stuck in a moment is impossible for this woman right here.



Sounds like quite the adventure Elizabeth! Glad you made it back in one piece. :-)

9:08 AM  

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