Monday, August 31, 2009

The best day EVER!!

Today I had the best day of my life. And that's saying a lot because I've had a LOT of great days in my life. But today, my friends, was the best.

Better than the day that I found two twenty dollar bills in a pair of pants that I hadn't worn in three years. Better than than the day that Wheel of Fortune had a "phrase" that turned out to be "New Kids on the Block." Even better than the day I realized that, since I was on my own in college, I could eat the whole box of Swiss Cake Rolls if I wanted. And, believe me - THAT'S hard to beat.

So what was so great about today? Well, friends . . . I GOT TO MEET CRYSTAL GAYLE!!!!

Now, some of you may know how much I love Crystal Gayle but for those of you who don't . . .

When I was a kid, I IDOLIZED her. I used to sit in my sister Tammy's room, using her stereo to play my 8 track tape over and over and over. I loved every song on that tape and sang with all my heart. She was the reason that I realized that I love to sing and she made me want to be a singer when I grew up. And I was glad for that because, before that, I wanted to be a cowgirl but after an experience I had as a child on a horse called "Funtime," it was clear that the cowgirl life was NOT a "fun time." But I digress . . .

She also made me want to grow my hair out so that it was just like hers. But there were two problems with that goal. First, I was still using Johnson & Johnson No More Tears shampoo which, frankly, is like washing your hair with a bar of Dial soap. Just thinking about it now makes me want to do a deep conditioning treatment. And why was I still using it as a 6 year old? I don't know - ask Nora. ANYWAY, it dries out your hair and doesn't make it the easiest thing to brush through in the morning, especially with MY bedhead. Second, my mom was still brushing my hair for me at that time and, what with the long and tangly hair coupled with her fairly healthy dose of craziness back then, the morning hair-brushings were a little tense. So we decided short hair was the way to go for the time being . . . at least until we started using conditioner, for goodness sake.

So fast forward 25 years or so and I'm driving around in my car when my phone rings. It's Tammy calling to tell me that Crystal Gayle was coming to Dosey Doe here in The Woodlands. I couldn't believe it! My idol? In my hometown? I almost wrecked. For those of you who don't know, Dosey Doe is a restaurant where they have live music either in the form of open mic nights or concert. It's an intimate venue in that, no matter where you're sitting, you're never more than say 50 feet from the person on the stage. So the idea of seeing Crystal Gayle THAT closely was so exciting! I knew I had to go.

My sister Erin ended up going with me. It was such a bummer that Tammy didn't get to come even though the whole thing was her idea - she had to be at children's choir at her church. Between you and me, I think God would have understood . . . I mean, IT'S CRYSTAL GAYLE, for goodness sake!! But she had to pass and that was no good. So Erin and I made our plans without her and decided we'd try to make the 3:30 show, which meant that we needed to get there by 2:30. Now, in true Palmore girls fashion, we didn't decide that until 2:00 so we got ourselves into high gear and high-tailed it on over to Dosey Doe. We had made last-minute reservations so we knew we wouldn't get the best seats in the house but we were holding out hope that they had saved the best seats for us . . .

We walked in and told the hostess our name. She looked up our reservation and got our table assignment and then led us to our table. We had our fingers crossed as we were walking. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand then she stopped at our table and we finally saw that we didn't really have the best view . . .

Just as we were sitting down, Erin recognized the hostess as a girl she had known in high school. They hugged each other and I momentarily got my hopes up that she would now have compassion on us and would move us to the best seats in the house. No such luck. Instead, she told us to have a good time and to let her know if we needed anything. I opted against telling her that we needed new seats.

But we Palmore girls are survivors so I knew we'd make the best out of it. We'd have to improvise and stand up or sit down so that we could see around the giant wooden structures all around us but it would work. It was just no big deal - nothing good dampen my excitement. Not even the view I had from across the table:

Erin had gotten the notice about the concert a LITTLE last minute and hadn't had a chance to straighten her hair. Luckily, she had a ponytail holder with her so she was able to see the concert. :) That girl has the most hair . . .

But, despite my two questionable views, I was beaming with excitement and anticipation:
We ordered the "Ginormous Chicken Fried Steak" but refused to call it by that name and prohibited our waiter from using the word "Ginormous" or its synonyms when referring to anything that we ordered. As we were eating our "Dainty Little Flower Chicken Fried Steaks," Crystal took the stage. I was sooooooooo excited!!! And, yes, her hair was just like it always was!!!
So many memories came flooding back and I was so amazed to be seeing her up close and personal after all these years. And before I knew it, I was . . . well, I was . . . ok, fine - I admit it - I was crying. I mean, I was laughing at how ridiculous it was that I was crying, but I was crying nonetheless:
Yep. I'm wiping my nose on my hand. I hope Crystal didn't see that. :)

Don't worry - I finally got a hold of myself and was able to grab a napkin instead of my hand:
After I dried my eyes and could see again, I took full advantage of our awesome view:
There's nothing like watching Crystal Gayle through rebar. Just ask Erin . . .
We watched the concert from the ground for a while, looking through the bars like this. As soon as I sat down on the ground, Crystal looked right up and me and made eye contact with me!!! It was so exciting!! Erin just laughed and laughed that I was so excited about that. But she was singing a different tune when Crystal looked right at her when she was taking a picture:


And then we both started jumping up and down when she looked up at us and winked:
It was a great concert. Her voice still sounds great and we think she might be moonlighting as an easy listening radio DJ because her speaking voice is so soothing. She sang all the great songs that I loved as a kid and that I still love to listen to, thanks to the greatest hits CD in the number 5 slot in my car's CD player. And it ended the best possible way it could have - she sang some gospel songs that brought the house down and then . . . wait for it . . . wait for it . . . she looked up at me and WAVED!!!! SHE WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAVED AT MEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!

But BY FAR, the best part of this best day ever?? Getting to meet Crystal Gayle in person:
She is TINY. She is on her tiptoes and I'm bending down and I'm STILL towering over her. And I didn't realize it at the time, but the camera doesn't lie: I apparently had her in a death grip. Look how I've pressed my face up against hers like we've known each other for years. Just blew right past her personal space and went in for the sorority sisters pic. I have no shame. And check out my right hand - my knuckles are white from pressing it so hard into her back. Poor thing was probably signaling for her attorney to draw up a restraining order.

So that was my best day ever. I daresay it will not soon be topped!

Unless I discover a box of Swiss Cake Rolls in the pantry . . .

5 comments:

The Queen of my Domain said...

Great, great story, Catch! Laughing all over again at the pictures & I hadn't noticed last night the white knuckles!!!!!!!!!!! Cracked me up. Glad y'all had fun!

Erin said...

LOLOLOLOL!! This was sooo much! I never understood why Jill would have wanted to go to New Kids concerts just to watch it. Jill- i GET IT 100%!! So much fun watching you Catchy. You forgot to mention how you did the giddy chit chat with Crystal. First, you told her that she was your idol, with the involuntary giggle and I'm sure a Catchy style elbow grab..but then you really went all in when you told her how excited you were when you were a kid that she named her kid Catherine too. HILARIOUS!!! LOVE LOVE LOVED IT!!

Catherine said...

Erin!! Quit revealing all of my secrets!!!

Ms. E said...

I love her too. Wish I'd known she was going to be there. I really have to get on your grapevine calling list. The thing I noticed right away is that Erin looks like she's more closely related to Crystal than to you. Hmmmm.

Diana said...

Looks like fun! I love CG too! And don't it make my brown eyes, and don't it make my brown eyes..... blue.....