Thursday, February 11, 2016

A Willie Good Time

Back in July of 1999, I went to my first Willie Nelson concert at Chastain Park in Atlanta. I was on my second date with the boy who is now my husband. It was not his first concert--by a long shot--in fact, Clint has been to see Willie over a dozen times (including, he loves for me to add, going to the annual Willie Nelson picnic one year in Luckenbach, Texas). He is what you might call a serious fan. He even went as far as proposing to me onstage at our fourth Willie concert together. Even though I was horrified that I was wearing jeans for such a big life moment and I begged him to wait, I obviously said yes, and the Red Headed Stranger has been a nostalgic figure for us ever since.

Clint's Willie adoration goes so far that he even suggested I name our dog Willie. However, I had a hard time looking at this one-and-a-half pound white ball of fur, a fancy little bichon frise puppy, and naming him Willie. Mercifully, Clint agreed to his second choice and so Cotton came to be. Over the years, Clint's "Willie Nelson for President" t-shirt faded and became part of a t-shirt quilt instead of a wardrobe essential, but he still has this one, which was a birthday gift from friends who obviously know him pretty well:

Back in December, I saw that Willie was coming to Charlotte. It had been years since we had been to one of his shows--in fact, thanks to the snowstorm in 2004 that caused a concert to be cancelled, we hadn't been to see him since we got married. That means Clint hadn't been to see Shotgun Willie perform in 14 years. He was one happy fan when he opened those tickets as part of his Christmas present.

We made an evening of tacos, margaritas, and the much anticipated concert. It was a relief when Willie opened with "Whiskey River"--he always does, and we could rest assured that some things never change. For an hour and fifteen minutes, Clint grinned ear to ear and sang along to "On the Road Again," "You Were Always on My Mind," "Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys," "Good Hearted Woman," and even "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die" (not one of my personal favorites, but a real crowd pleaser at the Ambassador to Weedville's shows, I can assure you). I was a little saddened that he didn't play longer, but then Clint reminded me that dear Willie is 82 years young. We knew the show was over when the stage crew brought out his "little" sister's walker to help her off stage. 

It was a great night, a good time was had by all, and we got to relive a little bit of our dating days. The merchandise table didn't have the Willie Nelson for President bumper sticker Clint has been coveting, but I'm sure that's not far out of reach. And neither are concert tickets the next time my husband's favorite pig-tailed guitar player comes back to town.

Fifteen and a half years after our first Willie Nelson concert, we're still always on each other's minds.

How to make Clint swoon, in one easy step.

Willie makes it look effortless, but the bandanna is a harder look to pull off than one might think.
I bear a strong resemblance to the Karate Kid.


  1. I always look forward to seeing a post from you on my fb page! Have a great weekend!

    1. Thanks so much for that! Have a fantastic weekend!


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