That's the text (one of five) I received from my teenage daughter yesterday. She and a bestie were spending the day at Government Center for Boston Calling 2014. (She and her bestie and 20,000 of their closest friends.)
Boston Calling is a huge outdoor music festival, featuring such contemporary bands as Magic Man, Walk Off the Earth, Bastille and Death Cab for Cutie. I don't know how long ago we ordered the tickets (I should, my daughter had to borrow my AmEx to secure them), but Boston Calling has been on our radar for ages. I think it's one of the things that got her through the AP World History test.
Each day, bands play at two stages from 1:00 pm to 11:00 pm. The gates open at noon, but the girls decided to get there by 9:00 am each day so they could get front row seats (except, of course, there are no seats — it's all standing room only). This necessitated early morning parent-enabled commutes.
At one point I suggested that I might rent a hotel room in the Back Bay in order to minimize the late night/early morning drives in and out of the city. My daughter was elated.
I told her, "So, maybe I'll get a theatre ticket for Saturday night and then meet you girls somewhere after the last band plays."
"Oh," she said, going immediately from elated to deflated, "You'd be there too?" Apparently she thought I was going to book a downtown Boston hotel for her and her friend without me. Um ...
I. Don't. Think. So.
One thing led to another and I never did get that hotel room. But, my husband, generously, offered to do the morning drives. The other girl's father chose the pick-ups.
I was only mildly daunted by the idea of my little girl at an enormous outdoor music festival. A great believer in preparation, I ran through the usual instructions, "Don't talk to strangers. Send me updates. Make sure your cell phone is fully charged." In honor of Boston Calling, I added, "Stay hydrated. But, don't drink anything anyone gives you. Watch your wallet. Stay together. Avoid the porta-potties if you can."
And, she was off.
'Not sure why I still worry so much. At sixteen, I pretty much had free rein of Manhattan. As did my younger sister and brother in their turn.
And, at sixteen, I definitely knew what it was to be so passionate about something. A theatre geek, I had just started my love affair with The Rocky Horror Picture Show. My drama friends and I went every Saturday at midnight. Every. Single. Saturday. We dressed up. We threw rice. We ignored our parents when they disapproved.
Hmmmm. Where might my daughter get her predisposition for obsessive behavior from?
Now, at 52, I don't really have that kind of all-consuming, 14-hour-day-on-my-feet passion for anything. I love the theatre, so I go when I can. Thanks to the wonders of Netflix, On Demand and DVDs, I can watch my favorite movies (yes, including Rocky Horror) whenever I like. I have some favorite musicians, but even as a grownup, able to buy decent seats, I rarely go to concerts.
All in all, life is a lot calmer than it was.
But, not as exciting.
If you enjoyed this post, I invite you to order a copy of my new book Lovin' the Alien at www.lovinthealien.com.