So after work on Friday night we dropped off the boy at the in laws and we where off. The drive to the Chicago area is a pretty boring drive. We made a couple of quick stops to nab a couple of park-n-grab caches. None too exciting but it was a nice welcome break from the road.
When we reached Chicago we stopped to grab a bit to eat. Surprisingly there really wasn't much open. But we found this great little Italian pub. It was about a 1/2 hour before closing time but they still served us with a smile. I was a bit worried due to the fact we where the only one's in the restaurant. But they cooked us up a killer pizza. After leaving and fueling up we found it hard to get back on to the road and noticed all these cop cars on every corner and even guys setting up at the traffic boxes. Someone important was coming threw and later we found out Obama was in town and he was in the process of picking up his newly appointed or so to be appointted VP for the elections.
After that it was in to Indiana. We where tooling along pretty well until we came across a pretty bad car accident. But we finally crossed the border in to Michigan around 1:00 in the morning. Starting to get sleepy I pulled off at the welcoming center or rest area. A very nice one at that. I go out and walked around a bit and then grabbed the flashlight and headed off to find a small cache. I was hoping to score the geo-coin that was listed inside but someone had beat me to it. After a nice little hunt at the rest area and reading up on some of the vistor info (which this placed had a lot of history behind the rest area) we headed off in search of a hotel.
We stayed in the Benton Harbor area that night finally reaching that about 2 in the morning or so we thought. Oh yeah, that time change sign we must have missed that. We checked into the hotel really at 3 in the morning on their watch.
Getting up that morning wasn't too ruff. A few hours of sleep for me and I was ready to get back on the road. But doing some surfing I spotted a cache a few miles from us that I really wanted to see this light house. So we rolled across town and found ourselves on the edge of lake Michigan. We where looing for "Back on the Beach" (GC1011X). Not a very good hide but a heck of a location. There was parking right there and the cache page had warned us about paying the parking fee. Well, I didn't think we needed to pay it due to we weren't going to be there long. Sure enought when we got back to the car I had to speak to the guy typing out my ticket. But he was nice enough to say hey just go over and pay the parking fee and I void the ticket. No problem.
I took a geo-coin of madkaw's that I STILL have and Tiff took my picture of me "dipping" it in Lake Michigan. After that it was back on the road. About 5 hours more of driving. But this was fun cause this was road nether of us had been on before so alot of looking around. When we got to Detroit, I had downloaded a bunch of virtual caches and their waypoints. I thought this was best to see the historal type of sites around the city. Sure enough they took us to what we where looking for. In my e-mailing some of the answer's off to the cache owner's I got a reply from one of them saying I hope you left enough for a return trip. I think it would take more than one trip to see everything I wanted to and go after the caches I was looking at.
Then after some site seeing and getting the answer's for the virtual's and we drove up to Auburn Hill's. We checked in to the Holiday Inn there about a mile from where the concert was going on that night. A very nice hotel. It had just been built and they had it all, Flat Panel TV's the works. Heck even a doorbell on our room. Yep every room had it's own door bell and when you pressed the privacy please button in the room a small light came on just about the doorbell and wouldn't let it ring till you turned it off.
That night we rolled into the venue (where the Sonic's play) and found out there was a 15 dollar parking fee. I don't know what's up with that state and their parking fee's but they seem to love them. We got inside the venue and much to our surprize we had to sign wavier's to be on the floor. Seem's they think they have some ruff mosh pit's or something. But I notice alot of people had camera's. Which is a big no-no around here. So I asked one of the employee's about it. Sure enought if you had a small camera you where allowed to bring it in. But once you left you couldn't get back in. So no picture's for me. We sat down and had some drinks. Well the opening band just wasn't our thing so it was down to the floor and then back up again. Tiff came down with a migraine about the time we got there so she wasn't feeling up to much. I drank up as I knew playing in the pits I would get pretty dehyraded.
After the opening band had been done for a while, I told her I'll see her in there and off I went. Clear up to the second row. I was up there for about half of the show. I wiggled and wormed to keep my spot but really didn't have a hard time keeping it. They didn't allow any drinks of any sort on the floor and it get's pretty hot being in that crowd. The security guy kept pouring bottled water into the mouth's of the willing but sadly he kept missing me and this young girl to the side of me. At one point I yelled at him to give her a drink. She was in disbelief that someone would do that. But like I told her, hey if my wife was up her I would hope someone would do the same for her.
I was about as close to Trent Reznor as you could get and had a great view of some of their specialized insturament. Like his LCD panel that control's his computer and runs the garage band software. Yep, two shows are never quite alike. But I got to see him really get into playing the panel at the end of Echoplex. After about 15 songs I dropped back and went and played in the mosh pits for a while. I didn't hang out in them too long. they are not like the one's in Iowa which is what I'm used too. I kept telling this other fellow these are pretty weak. The one's I've been in around Iowa can get pretty bruital. He assured me no this is as crazy as it gets. Guess that's why most of the artist that come to the Eastern Iowa usually say something about how crazy the crowd gets.
I then relized I wasn't sweating anymore. So I hightailed it up to get a big glass of water. After that I went off in search of Tiff without any luck. Normally I can just about find anybody I'm looking for but I guess I wasn't on my home turf. So I went back to the sound board and listened to the rest of the show from there. As always NIN put's on a heck of a show, and their sound crew is amazing.
After the show I met up at our meeting point with Tiff to find out she found out that have a doctor at shows. Her migraine had gotten bad enough that an employee has saw her in her misery and they took her back to the doctor. He gave her some Advil and some earplugs (go figure, I'll never live that down.) But four hours after the start of the opening act we where headed to the car. It was pouring down rain outside but at that point I really didn't care. We hopped into the car and got back to the hotel and order dinner.
The next morning was pretty much get up and go. Had the whole trip to make it back to Iowa. We did some rest area caches on the way back home each taking turns driving and sleeping. I guess we are getting too old to do a weekend rock trip anymore. But it was a good time and other than the concert I think the Light House was the highlight of our trip.