Drive to Phoenix to play that night at Chopper John's. Lodgings would be provided by Jody, an old friend of AJ's in her awesome little bungalow apartment.
Weather had improved for the drive.
$6.66 The Purchase of The Beast!!!
Rolled in to her place in the afternoon. Pulling off the highway there was a sound. AJ: "What was that?!?"
We hoped it was just the rough patch of road. But then the sound was followed by a distinct CLANK as we pulled onto her street. That's not good. Another CLANK as we pulled up.
AJ had recently had the spindle and bearings replaced on the left front tire. It was ok. However, the right tire had signs of leaking grease. Shit.
So AJ got on the horn and secured a friend with a vehicle to get the trailer to Chopper John's that night, and looked for a body shop nearby that would be open on Sunday. Van Hellsing was going nowhere under her own power.
So we chilled at Jody's until she got in from work. AJ made friends with a neighbor's dog across the street. I think he dubbed the big ole goof "Captain Chango". The dog didn't care :)
The bundle of energy named Jody finally came home and there was much catching up and regaling of tales from the current journey.
But disaster was going to be a recurring theme. The friend's truck that was carrying the trailer to the venue took a wrong turn, wound up on the highway, and immediately blew the transmission. SHIT.
They were able to limp to the venue. I was already there having met up for a quick dinner with Kim, a former Austinite and friend. So I was relaying updates to John the owner as I waited at the venue to see if the rest of the band and gear was going to show up at all.
They finally did, and with no time to spare. We threw our gear onstage, had a beer and hit it. Hard. Fun show to the best of my recollection. Lots of AJ's old friends in attendance as well so we had a great crowd.
AJ and local Phoenix anti-celebrity, Terry Trash
We also pleaded our case re: vehicle problems and set up a tip jar. The wonderful denizens of Chopper John's graciously filled it. And turned out we'd need every penny, but I jump ahead of my tale.
We had luckily secured another friend/vehicle (the transmission held up this time) to get us and the trailer back to Jody's. Her place was very small so I opted to sleep on the bench in the van. Luckily I had my warm-ass sleeping bag as it was cold as balls. I slept very well, and did not die.