Monday, May 26, 2008

Aching to get back to Aiken

So, I recently took a road trip to Aiken, South Carolina. Population: 28,829. I hopped on the road Friday, and drove from Woodbridge, VA down around Richmond, through Greensboro, Charlotte, and finally stalled out just shy of the Georgia-South Carolina border in a small hamlet called Aiken.

After 11 hours in my truck I was more than eager to swig some shine and listen to Blue Grass all weekend. I met up with Casey and Tim from Charlotte (festy friends). Together we threw up my tent in about five minutes and hustled over to the stage.

I had arrived just in time to see the Hackensaw Boys. It was a great set, but I was saving my energy for the following evenings activities.

I remember going to bed that night with a smile on my face, a mild buzz, and the sound of crickets. I awoke to a thunderous, pounding rain and a wind that threatened to blow the rain fly off my tent and possibly me with it.

The lightning and the thunder were so bad at times it literally sounded like the lighting was striking the trees just outside of our camp site. At one point when there couldn't have been more than a half a second between the lighting and the thunder, I ran out to my truck and tried to fall back asleep. Damn that was scary!

The second night was great... Larry Keel with Natrual Bridge, The Hackensaw Boys, Town Mountain and the Drew Emmitt Band. I was so tired from not getting any sleep the previous night I went to bed semi-early.

That night the storms started all over again. There wasn't quit as much thunder but there was biblical amounts of rain. Thank god Casey had brought her Easy-Up. It was a life saver.

This was my first festival of the season and we had a great time! The festival was small, featured notable bands, and was totally non-commercialized. The experience reminded me a lot of Mayhem in The Mountain.

All in all, aside from the savagery of thunderstorms at night and the lack of sleep, I'd rate the experience a 9 out of 10 for festivals. I will definitely keep this one in mind for next year. All aboard for All Good! ;)

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