The experience…


“Hi there! My name’s Mary Lou! How are you? Where are ya’ll from? I’m originally from Springfield, Illinois and he’s from Napier, Indiana. We’re Midwesterners too-we lived in Chicago for six years and Buffalo for 13 so we know the snow belt crowd!” Said the very helpful and engaging woman in the car next to us. “We drove about three hours to be here…” She explained. Peering into our rented van she asked “You wanna know what my two sons said when we asked if they wanted to join us?” She said directing her attention toward the doll. Barely looking up to acknowledge someone speaking to her, the doll took out an ear bud and listened… “They said why would you want us to listen to that man your so weird about?” Mary Lou finished. The doll looked pointedly at me and said “Exactly!!” before putting the earbud back into place and ignoring us once more.

“I think it has been about 31 years since I’ve been to the drive-in” I said to my husband, recalling that old memory. “My friends and I went to see the movie “Porky’s” which seemed fitting as one of us lost out virrr…” I stopped myself from saying when the boy innocently asked “What did they lose?” Looking back at him I replied “I wasn’t speaking to you..” Embarrassed he overhead. “What? I was just curious…” The boy argued while I replied “Mind your own business boy” and then tried to ignore him.

Having no real information about when the show would start we arrived wayyyy wayyyy too early. Ordinarily we would have packed plenty of bug spray, beverages and chairs for outside viewing. Instead we were
relegated to viewing from the van-which turned out not to be all that bad of a deal; considering the sound system at the venue was less than desirable, while the car stereo speakers worked great.

We sang along to all which Jimmy Buffett performed; even seat danced when necessary. We honked our horn (with the rest of the crowd) when the drive-in we were at, was given a special shout out by JB himself and enjoyed the ambiance around us. Jimmy and the Coral Reefer band entertained for almost two hours, playing all the oldies but goodies along the way. Mary Lou at one point shouted over to us “What’s your favorite Buffett song?” We were dumbfounded and didn’t reply. We couldn’t pin point just one…there are just too many to choose from. She took a cue from our bewilderment and smiled, a knowing smile then went back to singing along with the rest of us.

We watched through one encore then decided to hit the road. Hearing the last strands of Why Don’t We Get Drunk and Screw mashed with Its Five O’Clock Somewhere was enough to carry us, our hour and a half drive back. Sated by the music and glad to have a nice memory from the experience.

“Why is the car moving?” The doll asked concerned. “Because we’re leaving…” I said. “It’s over?” She asked again. “Haven’t you been paying attention?” Her Grandmother asked. “No. I’ve been reading…” The doll replied. “Yes, but you must have known the music had stopped…” Grammy said. “How would I know? I was listening to my own music” she said pointing at the headphone coil hanging from her ears. “Classic!!” The boy said while the rest of us laughed. The doll meanwhile displayed a less than happy face to us; replaced the earbud then went back to ignoring us altogether.



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