Because I’m happy.
And why would that be, you might ask?
Well…On Sunday, March 16, 2014, I grabbed myself a place in his-to-reeeee-ee-ee.
(Ok, so it may be my own little personal history, but it’s my history nonetheless).
And what was so historic about this night? Well…I finally, finally, finally, got Elton’s autograph in person!*
And yes, it’s been almost two months since the concert, but it’s been a crazy couple of months for me. Trust me, the excitement hasn’t waned. In fact, I think I’ve purposefully kept it locked up inside of me, since it may be a while until I see him in concert again.
As my sister Lisa and I headed on our journey, a very rainy, perhaps even dangerously stormy, day was forecast for Pensacola. I was afraid that we might drive all that way and the concert would be cancelled (they were predicting tornadoes just to the west).
But have no fear. We arrived at the hotel safe and sound and the trucks arrived at the venue overnight. We could see them unloading from our hotel room (not that I’m a stalker or anything).
And it rained.
We had Sunday all to ourselves, so some pre-concert shopping was in order followed by a late lunch at the Fish House (wonderful!) to carb up for all the dancing that was to ensue around 8:00 pm.
And it rained.
Then came the ritual of trying on various concert ensembles. I ended up going with the tried and true gold sequined cardigan. First, because it sparkles and he might notice me. Second, because it sparkles and he might notice me.
And it rained.
Fast forward to concert time and it was still raining. Doors didn’t open until 7:00 pm (really, Pensacola Bay Center, really)?!!
We decided to have a glass of wine at the hotel (another pre-concert ritual) before we hiked across the street to the PBC. We met up with some very nice fellow concert goers, none of whom had seen Elton in concert before. They hung on our every word as we regaled them of the glories of the Elton John concert experience. [Side note: It was at this point that Lisa discovered that she is into double digits with the number of EJ concerts she’s seen. I think she qualifies as an Eltonite, wouldn’t you say?]
Time to head over and guess what? It was still raining. We had to stand in line for about 15 minutes before they opened the doors (really, Pensacola Bay Center, really? Did I mention that it was raining)? The crowd seemed very excited, though – and well they should be!
Once we got inside, we went straight to our seats to check out the view. Take a look:
And of course we had to take the requisite selfie:
I think we sparkle up pretty well, don’t you?!
The anticipation was palpable…we talked to several people around us who had never been to an EJ concert before, as well as a few die hards. And then the lights went down…
It’s always a great concert when it starts with Funeral for a Friend, isn’t it?
I won’t bore you with the set list (oh, well, yes I will, but in just a bit. You’ll see why).
The crowd rushed the stage during Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me, and I made sure I had my spot. I was the first one stage left.
Somewhere between DLTSGDOM and the end of the main set (I believe it was during The Bitch is Back – how appropriate!), Davey walked over and handed me his guitar pick. Did you get that? Davey. Handed. Me. His. Guitar. Pick. (Swoon).
And then Elton and The Band left the stage. Everyone knows that Elton signs autographs as he comes out for the encore. I’m not sure what I would’ve done if he skipped over me. Thankfully, though, he did walk all the way over to where I was standing and penned his autograph to my Captain Fantastic Time Magazine cover. Lisa was gracious enough to step back and capture the moment:
After the concert, the videographer handed me the set list she was working with, which I thought was very nice of her. Another souvenir from an amazing evening:
Needless to say, the concert was magnificent and the experience was EPIC! But don’t take my word for it – here’s what the Pensacola News Journal had to say about it:
And guess who made it to their photo archive? We were definitely dancing “like we were at an Elton John concert.”
*See, I have this thing about autographs. I don’t want to buy one, nor do I want to send away for one. I wanted to get one in person. I have been fortunate to get Bernie’s in person, as well as those of Davey Johnston, Nigel Olssen, John Mahon, Kim Bullard, and Matt Bisonnette…along with Matt Still’s and Keith Hayward’s.
And now the Kim has the Captain’s.
And that, my friends, is why I’m happy.