So I'ma make this quick, hopefully. Been forgetting to post this and I figured I would before I forgot. So, my friend got an awesome gift from her mother for Christmas, two tickets to see Bon Jovi live in Atlanta. (cue squeeing here) The problem was not seeing Bon Jovi, the problem was getting there. So I'm told it'll take like 4 or 5 hours to get there. She has money on a Walmart gift card for gas, we've got snacks, let's go!
I couldn't sleep the night before, Mobile has this weird thing where it gets hotter at night. Something about the heat being absorbed into the pavement and releasing when the sun goes down. I dunno. Do all cities have this? I live in the country so I don't have the phenomena. I can't sleep when I'm hot so I'm still up at 4am. (I don't know what time I actually went to bed, all I know is that it was daylight) We've gotta get to the airport for a rental car at around 6 or 7, we oversleep and get up around 9. I would have slept a lot longer due to 4am being awakeness. We get to the airport and park a good bit aways, not too far, but still a good walk. I'm draggin' pretty harshly, half awake, barely conscious and we get to the counter to realize that my friend didn't bring some of the stuff she needed. I think she needed a pay stub and a utility bill. We are going to have to go all the way back to her place. Blah. We stop at Panera (never been there) for bagels and I get this awesome cinnamon bagel thing with cream cheese that was absolutely fantastic. Go get one...I'll wait. So when we get back to the car we find her water bill and since her work is across the street from Panera we go there for a pay stub. Woot! We didn't have to go all the way back ^_^ After I drive her car and follow her back to her house, we load up and we're off!
I manage to catch 30 to 45 mins worth of sleep on the way up but I notice that time is passing a little quicker than it should. The concert is at 7:30 and we just don't seem to be making good time at all. It's like 6 or so and we aren't in Atlanta yet. We have another problem though, our car is running on fumes. We look everywhere for a Walmart to get gas but can't find one. We cue up a map on her phone to look for a Murphy's (Walmart brand gas) and spend a good while circling a part of town until we figure out that in little bitty print the place the phone is pointing us to is Murphy's Sports Bar. We figure we've got enough gas to get us to Atlanta, we'd get gas after the show was over. She uses her debit card at a little place for 10 bucks of gas and we're off again.
We make it there but the place that we paid 20 bucks for is almost completely full. We had to park on the very top floor of the parking deck. We walk several blocks to get there, up and down little hills and stairs. We finally get there and decide to use the restroom before we go in. It's 7:30. I hear a Bon Jovi song playing and I figure they must be playing a tape or something before the band goes in. Then I stop dead in my tracks and realize that, yes, the concert starts at 7:30 and it was indeed 7:30...back in Alabama. It's 8:30 here and we've missed an hour of the concert! How could we have forgotten about the time change?!
We finally make it to our seats to realize that someone else is in them. We have to go and get an usher to get the people out of our seats and the people that had to move spent the rest of the concert being douchebags to us and the people that helped us. Our seats were under an overhang so we couldn't see the tv screen and we were a pretty good bit away so it was kinda hard to see. I am uncomfortable around groups of people and the place was absolutely stacked, plus there was no room to stand straight cuz we were so close together. There were two chicks in front of us that were either drunk or insane. They couldn't decide if they were trying to be disco or 80s or what, they even did the disco finger point. The whole time they were dancing like they had lost their minds, or never had one to begin with.
It was AWESOME! For the next 3 or 4 hours (can't remember which) it was Bon Jovi! Right there! Now that I've seen him live no matter what song of theirs I hear I can imagine it live and it just makes it that much cooler. Freaking amazing. I've never been to a concert and for this to be my first, and possibly only, is really special.
So once the concert is over all of the time pressure is gone and we hang around until the place empties. My friend wanted to get a t-shirt but the little gas station we went to right before we got there screwed something up with her card and it had a temporary hold on it, boo. We also didn't get any pictures because in the rules it said that no cameras were allowed. We didn't wanna have to walk all the way back to the car if they found a camera on us so we just didn't bring one. They didn't even check us for one and there were flashes going off all over the place. Asses, all of them.
Thus begins our search for gas again. Every gas station we run into is for a different brand of gas, it's like Murphy's doesn't exist here or something. We finally find a Walmart with a gas station, but surprise, it's closed. It's after midnight by now and it seems like everywhere is closed. We go into the Walmart cuz my friend has a stroke of brilliance, what if we could buy a visa gift card with our Walmart gift card? It worked! We picked up a visa gift card and an Ihop gift card so we could get some food.
Gas achieved we spend the rest of the trip looking for an Ihop. We know of one in my hometown but are really hoping for one closer. The only one we find is closed...figures. Our last choice is the one in my town. Do remember that I have had almost no sleep and this is around hour 15 since we started this drive. We are both worn ragged and drag ourselves inside. It's so bad that I prop my head up with the menu so I don't fall asleep and hit my head on the table. She orders coffee (coffee puts me to sleep so I passed on that) After a really good breakfast (I think it was good, it was 1am and I think I was sleepwalking by now) we set off again, it's still an hour until we get to my house. We arrive at 2am, we say hi to Mom, and crash. We just absolutely died, I don't think I even moved the whole night. So that was my 16 hour trip from hell.
As a bonus bit of info, my friend is a ginormous fan of Bon Jovi and has everything they have ever put out. From the time we left Mobile to when we got to Tuscaloosa, all 16 hours (which includes the concert) nothing was played except Bon Jovi. And to make it funnier, there weren't even that many songs that played twice. 16 HOURS!!!
As another bonus bit of info, once my friend got back home she looked up the playlist to find out what we had missed in that hour that we were late. We walked in halfway through the first song ^_^ I don't know what they were doing for an hour but we didn't miss any songs, yay!
I found an older Bon Jovi concert picture from google but it can give you an idea of about what we saw.
Now picture it a little further away with an over hang taking up the top part of the pic, a wall/beam taking up the left hand side and a shit ton of people on the right and that's about what we saw. I don't know what tour or place this is but it's from the same side and about the same angle we were at. They were shitty seats but it was still absolutely amazing. Even with the 16 hours of hell I loved it.