Corpus Christi and a visit from Mickey!!!

Absence makes the heart grow fonder!

After high tailing it through California and Nevada we were all in some serious need of some R and R!  The group was split into two and fortunately for me I was in the first group which meant that I would get to Corpus Christi first and get to see Mick sooner! We had planned on him coming to Corpus when I was first offered the gig as we had 5 days there with only 1 show.  Unfortunately we waited a little to long to get the ticket but using Priceline got a decent rate on a ticket for him from Chicago. He actually arrived a few hours before me but was able to check into the hotel and check out the area.  We flew from LAX to Dallas//Ft. Worth (we'd just been there remember!) and then connected to San Antonio where we picked up a bus and drove the 2 hours to Corpus. Pretty much everyone laid low that first night.  Mick and I ordered a pizza and watched TV....other's in our group locked themselves in their rooms and just enjoyed some peace and quite!
Corpus is a beautiful area there but the hotel somewhat over exaggerated what their location had to offer...we learned rather quickly that if we were going to have any fun or do anything we were going to have to rent a car...apparently the rest of the orchestra also had the same epiphany...we were lucky enough to snag the last car off of the car rental lot that was within walking distance of the hotel.  It was also almost in the 100's, walking to and from the car rental place (though it was only a few blocks) just about killed us!  Having a car at our disposal was one of the most liberating things we could have done.  We quickly grabbed all my friends and went to the mall, the grocery store and Target...we just walked up and down the aisles like lost puppies staring at everything.  I am sure this must sound weird but when you don't get to "shop" for a month you'll know what I mean! The girl from the car rental place recommended a place for us to eat dinner on North Padre Island.  The island sits off the bay from Corpus Christi and the beaches there are right on the sea.  Pelican Landing was suppose to be great but the food was crap...I didn't even finish all mine and the prices were high.  Shawna got food poisoning and ...well...we learned to follow our nose when it comes to restaurants (it sort of smelled funny when we walked in!).  By Wednesday I just didn't even know where the week was going.  We went back out shopping.  Before I left on tour I thought about getting some of the Bose Noise Cancelling headphones.  At Mick's insistence we went to Best Buy and got me a pair (and I can say now 2 months into the tour, I know I am WAY behind on this blog, it's probably the best investment I could have made...) That afternoon Mick's and my good friend, Sissy (aka Melissa Crews) drove down from San Antonio and visited with us for a while.  We drove back out to Padre Island and Mick went swimming in the ocean while Sissy and I caught up on each other's lives.  I have never been to a beach where you can just drive up on to it and park right where you are swimming! It was pretty cool except that our little rental Hyundai got stuck...but no worries a few pushes and we got her out...I mean we know to get out of snow berms...that night in an effort to erase the previous nights dinner debacle we just went across the street to Joe's Crab Shack.  It was decent.  I don't remember ever having crab before so it was pretty fun watching each other tear into the buckets of meat. 

Thursday was show day.  We only had one so that was nice.  I was so excited for Mick to see the show.  He met me after sound check and we toured the Star Wars "museum" we travel with and then I took him back stage to eat some dinner.  As I have mentioned before on show days we get a catered dinner.  We travel with our own catering company.  That night's meal was especially delicious because it was fresh red snapper caught by members of our orchestra! A bunch of guys went out during the week and fished.  The snapper was great and it was nice to be able to share the dinner experience with Mick.  The show was great and Mick was able to get some great shots of me and all my friends when we were up on the big screen as well as video the opening and closing numbers.  I am so excited to play when I know someone in the audience!

Friday was our last day of "vacation".  The week went by so darn quickly! We wanted to go swimming but didn't want to spend the whole day in car getting to the ocean so we decided to try a beach on the Corpus Christi Bay recommended to us by a fellow orchestra member.  Shawna and Neil (percussionist from Boston) came along for the ride.  The beach was relatively quiet and we enjoyed just sitting in the water talking.  We saw fish jumping up out of the water all around us and then Shawna said, "ow...I think something just bit me!"  I started to swim over to where she was when I felt this...substance...wash over the left side on my body...my leg...my arm and then I felt it get tangled for a second in my hair and wash over my back...a few seconds later I was in serious pain as apparently I had been stung by a jellyfish.  I think I handled it pretty well...Mick and Neil walked me back to shore where a woman on the beach who heard me cry came over...as she was telling me the usual..."you don't want to hear this but pee helps" Neil was getting ready to do the deed...there are so many things wrong with this picture on so many levels and while I absolutlely appreciate his willingness to put me out of my misery if anyone was going to do that it was going to be Mick! But alas...I just muscled through the pain...we pulled some jellyfish tentacles off both Shawna and I and decided to call it a day at the beach.  Funny enough Shawna was only stung in one place..between her ring finger and her pinky...I on the other hand was stung all over the left side of my body in one of the worst jellyfish stings some people have seen...it was an experience I will never forget that is for sure!

All in all Corpus was fun but only because Mick was there.  It's hard to be away but I think it's harder for all of our spouses/signifiacnt others to be at home alone.  We've made friends here and there is almost always something to do or someone to talk to...for better or worse. 


That far south we found "Mexican" Coca Cola...made with real sugar.

Tim mimicking a statue who is hunched over
Tim and Shawna at Joe's Crab Shack

Joe's Crab Shack

Let's get CRACKIN'!!!

Tim and Shawna...and a HUGE piece of chocolate cake.

Darth....

Me and C3PO

Red Snapper, caught by members of the orchestra!

Me on the big screen! Taken by Mick from the audience.

Mick meeting his idol.

Executive Surf Club.

My arm after the jellyfish incident.


Shows to date: 16
Number of hotels stayed to date: 15
Best hotel to date: Omni Hotel, Ft. Worth TX (though the Embassy Suites in SD Bay had the best view!)
Miles traveled to date: 7,019

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