Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked

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By Sharisse

Now into our second week on the road, we’re old pros. I have now officially driven the Rig on the open road—even squeezed past an oversize vehicle on one side and a construction guardrail on the other. We’ve had the pleasure of learning the ropes of gray and black water dumping at a variety of sites. Okay, so it’s primarily Lee’s chore, although Kate has been a phenomenal number two, helping him keep the hose secure (sorry, blame bad puns on not enough sleep). Let’s just say that gravity is our best friend, and no matter how much of a hurry we’re in, we MUST check and double check that we’re doing it right. Despite Kai’s suggestion to call the bus “Poop Poop”, we’ve opted for his second choice: “The Rolling Coulter Bus”.  Let’s just hope he didn’t have any premonitions…

Despite a slower gig schedule these last few days we’ve been packing a lot into a little time. We were randomly invited over for lunch by a neighbor in Albuquerque and had a chance to try (and love) the famous New Mexico Chile. And although Munchkin has been pretty good with traveling and being confined to the bus when it takes SO much longer than expected to get to our next destination, he’s four. Bribery and movies only buy us so much time. So we’re making a point of being tourists when we can.

Two days ago we spent the day at Carlsbad Caverns. I knew it was supposed to be cool (hence the side trip), but I wasn’t prepared for how incredible they really were. We opted for the self-guided tour and traipsed down the switch-backed trail into the mouth of the cave. Lee took Kai and I hung back with the camera, losing track of everything but trying to do justice to the scale of what I was seeing. Nearly two hours and 300 photos later, we emerged awe-struck and a little giddy with stoke. We spent most of the drive back to the bus discussing which fantasy and sci-fi movies the caverns most resembled. Aliens, Superman, and Indiana Jones made it onto all our lists. You can see my photos in the gallery, but better yet, if you get the chance, I highly recommend making the trip yourself.

After our little jaunt it was time to get back to business. Lee and Kate headed up to Roswell for a show at a wine bar not knowing what to expect, but taking the GoPro just in case. Lee threatened to play the “Close Encounters” melody, figuring it would either be a hit or get him kicked out. But the evening took a less alien, more rockstar-appropriate turn. There were people there specifically to see him play, and when Kate got up to sing “Gray or Blue” they gaped at the audience singing the words back to them. That may be a first in a town we’ve never been before. I was sad to have missed it, but making sure the Munchkin gets his sleep is non-negotiable.

Every time we go to a new place we take a risk. Maybe no one will show up, or it will be the wrong crowd, an off night, or any number of possible scenarios ending in the thought “What are we doing here?” But so far, everywhere we’ve gone we’ve been greeted by wonderful fans whose enthusiasm put smiles on our faces even when we’re skating by on a mere half night’s sleep. We cannot express our collective gratitude for all of you and your support. We can’t wait to meet every one of you in person as we see the rest of this great country. Next up: Texas.

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