Meniscus Synthesis

For me the simplicity of camping is rewarded by a welcome serenity and feeling of self-sufficiency that makes the lack of creature comforts and excess of crawly creatures more than worth it. For night 2 in Sioux City, I was also grateful for that thin layer of waterproof nylon that protected me from thunderstorms that began at 1:30am and lasted until I finally emerged for the day around 8:30am. My dreams were broken and populated with familiar faces in unfamiliar settings; with both potential violators and eventual vindicators.

I shoved my feet into a pair of tennis shoes and crawled out into the morning to disassemble the tent and pack up. I collapsed the tent, laying it and the tarp and rainfly out to dry in the sunshine that according to the weather app was due to appear any moment. I drove to town for a quick breakfast forgoing the quaint diner - mainly because I was in the mood to trade a bottomless pot of diner coffee for a reasonably-sized cup of coffeehouse brew, and also because I didn't want to linger longer than I needed. After a couple hours, with the camping accessories reasonably dry, I saddled up in the trusty Pontiac Vibe and plotted a course for Kansas City, MO.

For a place I rarely visit, I think about Kansas City a lot. To me it is the quintessential midwestern city. It's like dead center of the US. I had a great friend from my childhood who lived there for a few years whom I visited a couple times while passing through town to play cafes and dive bars. It's the place I could never commit to moving to but that I have a pull towards. My show was at the Westport Saloon, a sweet old building in the Westport district that is known for its roots music and the substantial amount of 4 Roses Whisky they go through on a nightly, and daily basis. I played with a really sweet dude named Tyler Giles, who's been around a bit - from Nashville and back, and despite being a strong songwriter and incredible guitarist, said over the mic "I moved back from Nashville because you realize quickly how much better everyone else is at music than you are."

The show went well, although the shots of whisky started adding up. When it comes to booze, I'm much more of a sipper than a shooter. I'm pretty sure I had something with Red Bull in it, so that's a big no-no. After the set, I hung around the neighborhood for awhile, with a half gallon of water and some gas station taquitos. Glamour, glamour, glamour. It only costs you $4.69. 

Wednesday morning was a bit of a battle, but I scraped myself off of the bed at Days Inn and meandered around the freeway culture in northern Kansas (where the hotel was) until I settled on a Perkins overlooking a freeway onramp. After an essential breakfast, I made the drive to Lincoln, Nebraska, listening to podcasts and missing my exit and turning a 3 hr drive into a 4.5 hr drive. Consequences come in all shapes and sizes, but some days it manifests as an aura or thin skin obscuring the body and turning what was once clear window out onto the world into panes of frosted glass.

The show Wednesday night in Lincoln was quaint and the handful of attendees were attentive and eager listeners. I was grateful. There wasn't a single rose, let alone four in sight.


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