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Aftershock Rock Festival - Rock on Rhonda!

We woke up early this morning to pack up, shower and hit the road toward Sacramento. It’s my annual Aftershock Rock Festival. This will be my fifth year. The first year, Jillian flew home for the weekend from college when she was going to Embry-Riddle in Prescott Arizona, 2015. The next year Micheal Harris was my heavy metal rocking buddy and we stayed at a hotel close by. It was a two day festival. The 3rd year, Michael and I attended and were able to stay with our good friends Julie and Sarah at their home near Discovery Park. The fourth year, Larry was able to come with Michael and me. We all three stayed with Julie and Sarah in their new home. We actually got to Sacramento early on Saturday to help them move from their rental into the home they bought! And we even got to spend the first night there too!!

This year, the party just got bigger! Courtney Larry’s oldest daughter, flew in from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan to go with Michael, Larry and I to Aftershock. This year it was 3 days of heavy metal madness!! I love this concert. It’s a blast with about 50,000 people attending the sold out shows. Julie and Sarah were absolutely the best hosts allowing us to descend on their weekend in a big way.

The drive to Sacramento went fairly smoothly with very little traffic as we left just before 8 am. It’s estimated driving time to be 2 ½ hours but I definitely wanted to be in Sac by noon. Michael had picked up Courtney at the airport the day before and was driving from Rohnert Park to Sac to meet us at Julie and Sarah’s house. Our friends said there was room to park the Airstream in their driveway for the weekend and Michael and Courtney had their own rooms in the house. Wow! Are we so spoiled?

I let Julie know we were arriving around noon. Both her and Sarah worked until after 2pm so we wouldn’t see them until the concert was over. Julie told me where the hidden house key was and that the cold beer was in the garage refrigerator!!! Cold Beer!!! Hell Ya!!! Have I said how really really spoiled I am yet? It’s all true. Just as Larry was backing the trailer into the driveway, Michael and Courtney showed up! They the whole party is here. I showed them their rooms and they freshened up while we finished the trailer. We had some beer and found a restaurant close to Discovery Park for lunch. It’s better to eat before you get inside. The lines are long for food and it’s not really the best stuff to eat. We found this fabulous sandwich shop called Mendocino Farms that has great sandwiches. I got a super yummy Portobello mushroom sandwich with a delicious beer! We headed to park near the entrance to the concert. Michael was the designated driver on friday.

I was really looking forward to seeing Slipknot along with Staind, Lamb of God, Halestorm and Dropkick Murphys. We didn’t need to get into the venue until around 4pm. The walk in was about 30 minutes as we parked in the industrial area about 2 miles away. We got to cross a great bridge over the Sacramento River on the way into and out of the park each day. It’s quite a walk but easier to leave after the show. Not sure how much we spend on beer but the microbrews were $12 each and we were never without one in hand the whole time.

After my favorite band Slipknot was done, we went out to find some dinner about 10pm. Somehow we lucked out and found a great spot to park by the Iron Horse Tavern on 15th street in downtown Sac. The food was good and much needed. Julie and Sarah were still up when we got home so we got to visit for a while before bed. Sarah is my friend from my Sonoma State University Dining service years 2006-2010. She may have left before I did. She now is my IRS (auditor) helper and my favorite player from the Nevada Storm Women's Tackle Football team. Julie is a counselor at Cosumnes River College and they have been together for over 9 years. They are truly two of my very Best Friends!!

Saturday morning we all gathered by the pool for morning coffee. I gave Sarah her shirt from the Saskatoon Valkyries Women’s Tackle Football team. They were the national champions just like the Nevada Storm in 2019. Sarah loved it and put the shirt on right away! Sarah and Julie suggested that we try Drakes at the Barn for lunch before the concert. We headed over there about 1pm. Julie had a training at her school so we didn’t get to treat them for lunch this day. Drakes is right on the River and has a large grassy area to play cornhole and other yard games. We had pizza and drank some beer before we headed to day two of Aftershock. I was the designated driver this day. The headliner was Blink-182 and I am not that big of a fan. I did really enjoy Rob Zombie as I always do. I think I’ve seen him at least 3 maybe 4 times. I really liked Stone Temple Pilots, Bring Me The Horizon and Bad Religion. One of my other favorite things is to watch the people. This is always a great time. I also like to check out mohawks and boobs. Some women need to show them off so I look and I’ll point them out for Larry too. Good times! After the concert, I got to drive around drunk kids! I also let one of them navigate. Bad decision. We tried to find food and I was directed across town at least twice. When I drove past the festival sight an hour later, I was sad. We ended up going back to the restaurant that we ate at the night before, The Iron Horse. Glad my turn was over. If Julie and Sarah were up waiting for us, I probably just kissed them goodnight and went to the trailer. It was a long hot dusty day of rocking out!

Sunday morning was the same scenario. Coffee by the pool before going to lunch. We wanted to treat Julie and Sarah for lunch but they already had plans to meet some Ameci folks (restaurant at SSU) at Drakes for lunch. Sarah was a manager (well liked) at the Pizza joint on campus and it was a bit of a reunion with 3 former student employees plus Sarah. So like I do, I crashed it! It did however pay Sarah and Julie’s tab for their generous hospitality. We had a good lunch and there was a baby involved so that’s always a good time.

Michael offered to by the DD again and I was happy. I was so excited to see of my favorites bands Tool. This was the night I was waiting for. Korn was awesome! A Day to Remember was good and I always enjoy some Chevelle. Watching Tool is an amazing experience that it is hard to explain. If you love Tool, You will understand me. I am grateful I was able to go to this festival again. Sunday was a little harder as the fatigue starts to set in and the dirt and dust got really bad. Next year, I’m wearing a facemask, The dust was so bad it most likely was hazardous to your health. I may have cut 6 months off my life at this show! Ha ha ha

We spent another night in the trailer in Julie and Sarah’s driveway. Michael and Courtney stayed Sunday night as well. Each night when they got into their beds, there was a piece of candy placed on their pillows. Such thoughtfulness and sweetness!

Monday morning we were up early to head out to the Airstream Shop in Winters.

Michael was driving Courtney to the airport so she could work on Tuesday. We needed to let Sarah and Julie have some privacy and their beautiful home to enjoy the quiet. What makes this such a memorable weekend is that I had so many of the people I love the most all together! And Heavy Metal Music!!! Fuck ya!

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