I show up, see some Monrovia kids, we talk a little.
See Mr. M and he lays out the basic plan for bus/equipment truck/semi parking. I find my parking people and off we go sign hanging 😀
Still not raining, and not only is that a little disappointing, but my station outside the equipment truck/semi parking is equipped with an easy-up and a propane heater 😦
The weather report called for intense rain, and it did a couple of times. I had psyched myself to be directly under a cold waterfall for 10 hours 😀 Better for the performers, staffs, and volunteers that didn’t happen, but I love me the physical/mental challenges 😀
Sometimes, it’s all about me! 😀
A random kid from Ontario shows up and we have a 25-30 min. conversation. He’s in his school’s winter percussion line, but they aren’t competing today. His instructor was there with other schools and he came to see those lines. We talk some drum line and drum corps stuff then my parking partner tells me to go take a break before the groups start arriving. I say goodbye to my friend in the moment and off I go.
Activity is picking up across the whole campus. The volunteer/command center is filled with parents and kids. Lots of hellos, good mornings, and a few hugs 😀 I’ve been up since 5:30AM; had breakfast at 6:30AM. It’s just past 10 and although the food/snack offerings looked and smelled delicious, nothing was calling my name 😀 I chugged a water and took another water to go
Got back to my station just as groups started arriving. Of course that’s when the rain started too, though at this point it was a light rain.
First semi we parked, they chose to park in front of us. It was a very large group and it was smart for them to be early; their first performance was way more than 2 hours away. All of the kids had some kind of breakfast. When the rain started picking up, they naturally over ran the easy-up. I took my chair and myself into the rain and about 40 of them took cover with another 15 or so with umbrellas, ella, ella, hey, hey, hey 😀 circling the perimeter.
When their equipment truck opened and they were called to start unloading, 30 or so of them left their uniforms hanging on the easy-up. It looked like a vender stand for uniforms! As the kids walked away I started yelling, and my partner quickly joined me, YARD SALE!!! UNIFORMS, UNIFORMS, CHEAP!!! PRICED TO MOVE!!!
All the kids stopped 😀 Some ran back and got their uniform, most didn’t. Some of the nearby parent boosters looked over with very concerned looks, but most of uniforms remained on the easy-up
After the first wave of groups came my partner told me to take a break before the next wave 😀
When I got to the volunteer/command room only one parent was there. I looked at her for a moment and guessed who her kid is. I was right 😀
I felt very fortunate. All kids are good, but honestly, some are a little better than others. This mom has one of those kids. We talked briefly about that fact and the fact that the music program they are in, the one I came out to support is very special in many ways 😀
I’ve had the privilege to work with and observe many similar programs. While it is important to be competitive and solid musicians, there are many ways to accomplish that. This program is structured such that the students AND parents are given every opportunity to be better as people. Students feel safe and nurtured. Parents feel welcomed and valued 😀 Blessed to have had the opportunity to have that conversation with that parent
The rain did come down in buckets at times 😀 I LOVED IT!!! I loved completely ignoring the elements and being focused on getting stuff done. One of my favorite moments during that time was standing in the middle of Colorado Blvd holding traffic while directing traffic into and out of the parking lot and the wind blew the hoodie off my 99¢ rain coat 😀
Helping maneuver semi-trailers into parking lots designed for cars sometimes took several minutes. One fella with the group I was helping to guide into the lot was standing beside me and just staring at me. He says, “You’re getting completely drenched!” (He was wearing some high quality rain gear. I think maybe the tip if his nose was wet) I turned to him briefly, as I am pointing and motioning to people moving large vehicles and I say to him matter of factly, “Yes, yes I am.” He then says to me, “You don’t seem to care?!” I say to him, “The least of my concerns right now is how wet I am getting.”
Some people 😀
The guy reminded me of the time the wind and rain were trying to blow me and the RV I was driving off I-40 in NM when the window behind the driver’s seat blew out and a horizontal waterfall cascaded across my head, shoulders, and back.
The guy behind me starts yelling, “THE WINDOW BLEW OUT!!! THE WINDOW BLEW OUT!!!”
Really? Good to know 😀
Oh the stories!
Monrovia boosters: what a lovely, beautiful, handsome group of people 😀
Side note: I know more now about cars, boats, engines, and camping then I ever thought I would know 😀