The bus was empty, which was simply amazing. Ashley and I got our own rows of seats. I, natch, used mine as a bed, basically the whole way. A good thing as otherwise by the end of the day I would’ve wanted to murder people.
About five hours later, midday, we got to Detroit.
More of mice and men As I slept, Ashley had formulated a plan.
We knew there was a MGM Grand Hotel and Casino in Detroit and as we’d been in a nice MGM in Vegas for the IHeart Radio Music Fest, Ashley figgered the one in Detroit would be a safe, comfortable place for us to eat and chill.
When we got to the cab stand outside of the bus station there were two cabs competing to capture us as customers. We went with the first cab because he was right there. The other cab driver became so upset that he gave me his business card, for later use. We didn’t need him later. Sorry buddy.
We got to the MGM and located the food court. It was nothing like its counterpart in Vegas and the whole casino smelled like an ashtray. I’m not sure what they do in Vegas, but none of the casinos there smelled like this one.
We got outta there, right quick.
We found a cute little restaurant and got the lunch special, deep dish mini pizza and a salad.
We lined up to get ice cream at Cold Stone. As we waited the radio station Tweeted the concert site. We deserted Cold Stone and started running in that direction. Then we stopped, got more detailed directions from Mapquest and discovered it would take 30 minutes for us to walk there. NEVERMIND.
Back to Cold Stone, to get our ice cream and charge our phones.
We walked around as we wanted to see what the radio station booths were offering. And we wanted to view the fans.
Kindness of strangers As we started walking a security lady started screaming at me saying that I had to leave my bag in my car, that it wasn’t allowed in the building, or anywhere near the building, and if I had it they wouldn’t let me in the venue.
We were skeptical, maybe he was going to drive off with the bags or, worse, drive off with us. So we walked away from the screaming lady and down the other side of the street.
While we were walking we saw two other venue workers. I showed them my bag, a mini drawstring backpack that says RED Taylor Swift on it, and explained what the lady had said. They both said our entrance to Ford Field with the bags would be fine. Crisis averted.
Then it was time to join the entry lines at the main gate for 100 level seats, gate A. They checked our bodies with wands and then searched through our bags. No issue on the bag size, silly woman giving me a heart attack for no reason.
But when we got to the entry door, our tickets wouldn’t scan. Ashley and I looked at each other and freaked. Were our tickets fake? Had the seller used them as well as selling them to us? Would we get in? The guard told us to go back to the ticket window, they’d help us.
We awaited our turn anxiously. The guy got a little snippy with us saying, “We weren’t paying attention” and we were like, “No! They tried to scan the tickets and it didn’t work, nothing to do with us…”
They took our tickets and they scanned with them and they sent us back to security. I was worried because they had just scanned the tickets and that the gate scanner would now say the tickets had already been used. But this time there was no scanning problem and we got in.
The fun never stops!
I won a $10-off coupon. Ashley, pointing at me, said to the lady, “This is her fifteenth RED Tour show, don’t you think she deserves the laces?” The lady agreed and I got a pair too! They are super cute, I can’t wait to put them into my Keds.
The other problem, which we will call Stubhub and complain about, was a giant light tower blocking our view. Our seats should have been sold as “obstructed view” but weren’t. While they weren’t the worst seats ever, it was kind of a bummer.
And we had a great time.
While at the beginning of the tour I had no idea of who Brett was, I have grown to really really like him. I am going to miss him a lot when he leaves the tour after DC, but I am excited that I’ll hear him perform on the riverfront at the CMA Fest!
During his set I turned to Ashley and said that we needed to make shirts for him and I dubbed his fandom name, “Bretty Bears.” We both got very excited to be making the shirts for him.
When Brett was done we braced ourselves for what we have been dreading this whole tour: Austin Mahone.
We sat down during him to preserve our energies for Taylor.
When Austin came out Ashley and I looked at each other and said the same thing at the same time, “He has dancers!? The opener has dancers!?”
But he just rapped with the music behind him and then moved on. He sang his most popular song, which isn’t even his song. It’s a remix of a song from the 90s. Then he finally ended. The sad part is I have to watch him another five, maybe six, times. Lord help me.
Sadly, Ed Sheeran’s loop station didn’t break and we had to sit through his regular set.
The impossibility of Tweeting I attempted to Tweet updates throughout the whole show but telephone service at Ford Field was terrible and it was near impossible. It took the whole ten minutes of You Need Me I Don’t Need You to Tweet that he was singing it. By the time the song ended I had given up but Abby, one of the other co owners also at the show, managed to Tweet it.
One of the amazing things about Taylor is that despite playing in front of 50,000 people, she is still able to make you feel like she is singing to you, and to you alone. I knew she couldn’t see me but when the mini stage faced our direction, I still felt like she saw me and sang a little bit directly to me.
I am fairly confident that Ashley thinks I’m a nut job because, not only do I know some of the tour dances (Stay Stay Stay, State of Grace, Holy Ground), but I also know most of the dialogue, including the 22 video montage.
I sing along with each clip — or speak in the case of an 8-year-old Taylor getting her guitar home video and a 19-year-old Taylor winning all her Grammys. As I was doing it in Detroit, as I do at every show, Ashley was on the floor laughing that I knew it word-for-word, song-for-song.
Secret song mysteries At her show in Lexington last week, my friend Amanda won Meet and Greet passes and asked Taylor to sing Ours. Taylor had agreed to but, when it was time for the Lexington secret song, she sang Our Song.
I feel that at some point in the past week Taylor remembered that she had promised to sing Ours rather than Our Song and decided to fix it by singing Ours in Detroit. It made me really happy to hear a song I hadn’t yet heard on the RED Tour.
During arena shows, Taylor starts singing Sparks Fly and then flies back to a balcony while singing.
But, that is exactly what she did. She was carried by her dancers going out, but then walked, with security guarding her, all the way back.
This allowed her to hug and high five fans even more than she does on the way out. It was really nice to see her being as interactive with her fans as she has been in the past. The interesting part was that despite how big the field was, Taylor still managed to get back to the stage at about the same point in the song as she does flying at the arena shows.
When the show was over I met with my co owner Abby, whom I hadn’t seen since Taylorfollowers in New York last October, and it was so amazing to see her. She was with her girlfriends and we ate at a barbecue joint and then went our separate ways.
Confused and befuddled in ChiTown Ashley and I caught a late-night bus back to Chicago. Ashley fell asleep right away and I started dozing off around the 3am pit stop. We pulled into the Chicago bus stop at 5am.
There was a line of cabs waiting outside the bus station and we went to the first one we saw. The driver was watching a movie, Soul Train to be specific. He asked us if there was anyone in the cab in front of us that could take us and we said no. You could tell he was annoyed, but he took us.
He drove at about 100 miles an hour, BLASTED reggae music out into the empty Sunday streets, and, I think, smoked pot. It was really scary and neither of us were in a mood to deal with it. We just wanted to get home and go to bed.
We got back and immediately crashed.
When I woke up I was totally disoriented and confused. I knew I was in Chicago but I had no idea what time or day it was. When I figured out it was Sunday (still) and only 1pm I was thrilled that I still had a whole day to chill before traveling again.
When I woke up Caylee had texted me saying she had won passes for the Tim McGraw Highway Don’t Care music video premiere Google+ Hangout in Nashville and wanted me to be her Plus One. I could have easily taken a bus to Nashville but didn’t want to abandon Ashley and said no thanks.
Then Tim Tweeted that he still had passes and Ashley and I debated going together but she didn’t want to make her boyfriend travel alone to Louisville and we decided against it.
I was a little — OK, a lot — bummed, especially when I also realized I had to retract my Billboard Awards seat filler and mosh pit tickets as I’m going to see my other love, Demi Lovato, that weekend in Boston.
In life we have to make decisions and sometimes the results suck. But at the end of the day, I’m where I’m supposed to be at that moment in time… even if Taylor is in New York every time I’m not. Darn you PUNK: Chaos to Couture exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Ashley and I laid around all day Sunday. When Ashley’s boyfriend James was done with work he came over and the two of them went grocery shopping. When they got back James cooked for us: pork chops, broccoli and quinoa. Delicio… Ashley has to work Monday, and I’ll be left to my own devices. That, I think, will involve sleeping, a whole lot of sleeping.
Monday night we’ll catch the bus to Louisville and the Taylor Swift concert in the KFC Yum Stadium.
Constantly in the back of my mind is the thought that this might be my last trip. I am running low on funds and I’m terrified my dreams are about to end. Nevertheless, I live for the moment and enjoy it all. I’ll keep going until it’s 113 percent impossible to continue and, even if that happens, I’ll keep right on attempting to make it all work.
I’ve gotten to 15 shows now, another 33 shows could still be in my reach, if I keep stretching…
I’m going to be doing a Q&A post again, this time its going to be about being a TSwiftontour co owner. If you have any questions regarding that, please Tweet me them so I can answer them in the blog!
Thanks for reading, thanks for caring.
“This isn’t flying, this is falling with style”
I’ll be blogging all the way through the RED Tour, Facebooking, and Tweeting (or @tswiftontour).
Use the email account CCWTS13@gmail.com if you want to send stories and photos that you think will be of interest to Swifties. We could even open an album!