This humble blog was started to document our travels around the country during the summer of 2006, We have opted to continue updating it due to the requests from family & friends. Enjoy!
Tuesday, May 05, 2015
April 17, 2015
Michael & Lee
War On Drugs
For the third year in a row, I headed out to California in April to catch
the annual Coachellla Music & Arts Festival in Indio. This year for the
first time since I have been going, Kathy opted not to join me, having a busier
work schedule and huge music festivals not being her thing. This year once
again, I joined my boss George, his friend Jalak and my co-worker and friend
Lee in Palm Springs at a house we rented near the Polo Grounds where the festival
The last two years, Kathy and I had flown in to Vegas and driven over
across the desert, this year I decided to fly in a day early and to fly in to
San Diego instead of Vegas. It has been many, many years since I was last in
San Diego and there is a lot going on there, plus it is closer to Palm Springs
I arrived in San Diego just in time to catch the beautiful sunset into
the Pacific at the U.S.S. Midway an old aircraft carrier that is docked in San
Diego harbor. The carrier is now a military museum and there is a beautiful
waterfront park that honors the US Navy and military service in general. There
is even a huge statue depicting the famous end of the war kiss by Key West’s
own Seward Johnson.
Upon checking in to my hotel, I looked out the window of my room at a
beautiful view of Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres and to my good
fortune a game against the Arizona Diamondbacks was just getting underway, so I
walked down the block from my hotel, bought a ticket and checked out the
ballgame. In honor of Jackie Robinson, all the players on both teams wore the
number 42, which though somewhat confusing was still pretty cool. The Padres
took a close, exciting game 3-2 on an 8th inning tie-breaking solo
home run. It was a nice way to start off my stay in California.
The next day, I drove down the coast and over to Palm Springs to pick my
friend Lee up at the airport and check in to the house. George and Jalak
arrived on a later flight and we were ready for the first day at Coachella. It
was Lee’s first time at the festival so we went over fairly early as she really
wanted to see Action Bronson who had a fairly early set time.
As usual we had the VIP passes, which get you your own special area with
private bars, food vendors and restrooms and we spent some time there planning
out our day. There were eight stages with almost continuous live music making
it difficult to decide at times who to watch perform.
Among the early bands that we checked out were Azealia
Banks, Raekwon and Ghostface Killah, George Ezra, War on Drugs, Interpol,
Alabama Shakes and Lykee Li. They were all pretty decent but to my mind two
really stood out, George Ezra and War On Drugs. Neither were all that familiar
to me, but both won me over with amazing performances that had me hooked and
wanting to see much more from both.
For most of the morning of the inaugural Indy Grand Prix of New Orleans
it seemed as if there was no way there was going to be a race because of the
torrential rainstorms that moved through the New Orleans area. It was crazy wet
and as we drove out to the track, I really thought that there was no way they
were going to get any running in at all. It wasn’t just rain, it was a continuous
downpour, but somehow the skies sort of cleared the rain stopped and the track
maintenance crew got busy trying to dry the track.
Thankfully with the rain tires, the track did not need to be completely dry
like it would on an oval and once the track was deemed drivable- even though
there were a couple of rivers of water flowing across the track. The race got
underway, slowly as Juan Montoya jumped out to the lead and the roostertails
made visibility almost impossible for the drivers behind.
Michael & Fuzzy Zoeller
It was sort of ironic that while the track was the wettest, the drivers
seemed to keep things under control but once a dry line appeared and drivers
started switching to the slick tires that all went away pretty quick and the
cars were suddenly sliding all over the place, While veterans like Tony Kanaan
even had trouble, young drivers seemed to spin out just about every other lap,
leading to extended caution periods and it became clear that rather than the
scheduled 75 laps, the race would run to the two hour time limit.
This played right in to the hands of James Hinchcliffe, who pitted on lap
13 and then skipped pitting on lap 33 when the majority of the field came in
handing the track position and lead to Hinchcliffe. It most circumstances there
was no way that he would be able to hold the lead without running out of fuel.
But this was not a normal experience at all and thanks to a plethora of
cautions, Hinch was able to hold on for the victory.
The race concluded after only 47 laps, 25 of which were run under
caution, concluding with a race-ending spectacular three car crash involving
Simon Pagenaud, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Sebastian Bourdais. Thankfully nobody was
injured, but the wreck had the race finishing fittingly under yellow. Hinch
beat Helio Castroneves and James Jakes for his first win of the year.
Kathy and I joined in the celebration in Victory Lane as Hinch , his crew
from Sam Schmidt motorsports, his friends, family and girlfriend Kirsten all
gathered to take part in the exciting victory. Hinch’s victory speech was like
something from a comedy show as the good-natured Canadian realized the good
fortune he got, but sometimes it is better to be lucky than good.
Hinch & Kirsten
I hope that Indy Car will return to New Orleans, the race has tremendous
potential and it is an awesome city to host the event. If it had not rained so
much it would have been a much better show and perhaps a spectacular race. Even
so Kathy and I had a great time and it was great to see Hinch get the victory.
About Us- We are Kathy Kilroy and Michael Blades and this blog was created to document our summer travels around the nation in 2006 and we have opted to continue posting to keep our friends and family informed of our lives. We each have lived in Key West for over 20 years and met and were married here in October, 2003.