Discover more from Listening in the Dark with Amber Tamblyn
Notes from the Road - May 19, 2023
Derrick and I have been on the road for a few days now, and I am absolutely wrecked with exhaustion and charged with excitement. On Wednesday, we performed in Louisville at a wonderful venue called CAMP Social Club where they served homemade empanadas and had an entire room filled with pinball machines.
The next morning, we packed up our gear and headed from Louisville to Chicago—a trip that was much longer than we had originally anticipated. The drive is usually around four and a half hours, but it ended up taking us close to eight hours by the time we got to the venue. We had somehow forgotten just how taxing these longer rides can be and didn’t account for the many stops we’d have to make to stretch our legs and wake our butts back up. (When you’re sitting on a motorcycle for that long, your butt definitely falls asleep.)
I honestly don’t know how Derrick can manage the long stretches of driving he does on the 800-pound beast of a Harley Davidson we’re riding. In addition to the physical challenges, you have to be much more aware of the dangers of the road and the constantly changing conditions. You have to be hypervigilant for many things you normally wouldn’t be as worried about, like the blindspots of massive semi-trucks. (Yes, you have to worry about this in a car too, but because the bike is so much smaller than a car, you are extra invisible to other drivers, making it that much more dangerous.)
There are also distractions; little things on the road or in the air that would normally be absorbed by a car get absorbed by your face instead. For example, yesterday, a dump truck carrying some kind of sand/dirt was in front of us, and little handfuls of the sand would fall out of the back each time the truck hit a bump in the road. The clumps of sand shot back and slammed into the visors of our helmets, partially obstructing Derrick’s view of the road. The sand also hit whatever small parts of our skin were exposed. At the speed we were going, it felt like a million tiny darts being thrown at me with full force. Luckily, Derrick was able to pass the truck, so we weren’t behind it for long.
We finally arrived at the Chicago venue, The Joinery, just a half hour before our show was starting. We hustled and set up a table where people could buy our books then rode the Harley into the venue. (Yes, directly into the venue; we love dramatic flair.) The show, called Grandma’s House, was great. I even met a Listening in the Dark community member! Shoutout to Allison O’Neil.
Today, we’re off to Bloomington for our next show and another five-hour motorcycle ride. This one will probably have some rain along the way, so it’s sure to be another interesting day of adventure on the Pretend It’s a Boat Tour. See you out there.