I’m nobody. Just a girl who liked the Grateful Dead in the late 80’s but took some crazy detours away from them and everything else for 25 years. I don’t know anybody. I don’t operate in the GD circles but I recognize so many names in the membership here and I think WOW! But really, I’m just a girl.
I learned about this site from Staci’s podcast, and before I was even done listening to it I had already signed up for Jerilyn’s email list so I could get in on The Wheel as soon as it began rolling. Amazing! Some might find my excitement over this amusing, but I’ve lived the past 20 years without meeting one single deadhead in my area. Not one. Not even the guy I’ve given my love and life to for the past 25 years– he’s not a deadhead– not even a casual listener. I love him anyway. <3
My story is long with twists and turns you’ll probably need a road map and a case of wine to wander through, and I’ll tell it all eventually. A few highlights about me:
- I grew up as a Coast Guard kid
- I graduated high school in Alaska and we moved back to the Bay Area in January 1989.
- I’ve been married 22 years and we have 6 kids between us, with 4 grown and two teenage boys at home. We’ve also got 9 (N-I-N-E) grandkids.
- I jumped headlong into conservative Christianity in the mid-90’s. Started homeschooling. Life happened, teenagers went crazy, more life happened and shit hit the fan. We left the church we’d been at for 18 years and have been decompressing for 6 years since.
- I never stopped listening to my old show tapes, even while we were in the church. I kept them in my car and listened to them when I was alone. Totally on the downlow. I gave up a lot of myself in those years.
- We still have two remaining kids at home (boys 15 & 17) and they go to school part time and homeschool the rest. We like the freedom.
- I’m a CNA and work on a busy medical unit at the hospital.
- I’m a homeschool blogger.
As the ties were loosened and we started to come away from the church I started listening to the Dead more. When I learned that Dead and Co were going to be at the Gorge in July of last year I agonized over should-I-go-or-should-I-not. I opted to not buy a ticket because I literally had no one who was interested in going with me and the thought of begging someone to spend $50 on a ticket to go with me seemed ludicrous.
One afternoon I was on my way to work and the radio station was offering two tickets to the Gorge show to the 7th caller. I thought “Why not?” and I called. And I won!
Two Miracles. I was so excited I almost drove off the damn road!
And I had no one to take with me. My husband hates concerts of any kind. He’s perfectly happy buying the “Best of…” albums by whatever band he’s wanting to hear, so I knew he’d never go with me. I asked friends. Seriously, there was not one single person who knew more than Touch of Grey or wanted to go. Remember, we’d spent 18 years in a conservative church. I didn’t know too many people with broader interests than that, although my world is expanding now, finally. My deadhead friends- the ones I have kept in touch with (scant few) are all in California and I’m in Washington.
I decided that whether or not I had someone to go with me, I would go anyway. The Gorge is a 2-hour drive from me. I ended up talking a girlfriend of mine into going, and we had an amazing time. She still doesn’t listen to the Dead but she did say she’d go again.
My life has taken some crazy turns and I feel like I’ve almost come full circle, starting to find myself again. I’m just a girl who fell back in love with the whole Dead scene and can’t wait to see where it leads. 🙂