Telluride Contest Blog
I recently went to my first Telluride music festival. I left with my wife from San Diego in our little Toyota Prius; the original model which felt like you were driving in a tin can and when you passed (or were passed) by semis, the car would buck and shake from the wind vortex. It was a two day trip and by the time we arrived my ass was completely sore (the seats felt like they were wood covered by a thin cushion).
Of course, the music was great but the atmosphere was even better. Knowing that after the long drive there was no way I was camping out (and this was before I knew what condition my rump was going to be in), we had arranged to stay at a B & B. However, my wife wanted to support the festival, so she had splurged and bought these 3 day tickets that let you camp there if you want.
At the gate they tell us to go to the parking guy down the road and tell him that because we have the camping tickets we can park anywhere. I drive down this dirt road to two parking guys who are on my wife’s side. I roll down the window and bend forward to look at the main parking guy and it’s a young Jerry Garcia; long black hair, nice bushy black beard, wire rim glasses. Somehow, Jerry is doing Purgatory as the parking guy at Telluride. After telling myself that it really isn’t Jerry, I hand him the tickets and tell him that although we’re day passers, the ticket guys said we could park anywhere. He leans down to the open window and responds no, as day passers they like us to park “over there”. Slipping into my ambulance chaser mode (I’m an attorney), I tell the guy, no, look at the pass, they said we could park anywhere.
What a mistake. He is not expecting any type of resistance and as I’m looking at the guy it’s like the physcadelics kick in and everything shuts down and he can’t say a word. Knowing this look from my dubious past, I immediately recognizing my mistake. I tell him “No, no, its o.k., where did you say to park.” He blinks his eyes and points over to an area.
I start to get the car going when I notice the guy next to him moving around like he wants to contribute. I stop the car when I hear his friend say “hey, HEY”. As he is over by the back rear door, I have to bend down over my wife’s lap to make eye contact. Damn if its not Pig Pen from the Dead; smaller, raggeddy gotee and hair. Now, I’m a little worried that this guy is either going to hit me or offer me the mushrooms that Jerry’s on. Instead he looks at me and says, “Peace, Love.” I give the guy a big smile and go park. Turns out this is the “Telluride Way”. What a glorious, long strange trip its been.