WE MADE IT!
Howdy, y'all! (Or maybe "aloha" is more appropriate...?)
The band, cast, and crew have made it safely to Rhode Island for tech week and the opening of Escape to Margaritaville!
Packing was... not fun! I am terrible at packing. Before this tour, I was working full time and commuting just over an hour home--or to teach music lessons--every day. It was a busy time! When the job ended, I had 5 days to say a lot of goodbyes and move everything out of my room in LA back to my parents'; they're gracious enough to convert my childhood bedroom into a temporary storage unit (thanks always, M&D!!). The night before my flight, I was up until 2 packing and moving, but... it happened. CHEERS.
A week before I flew out, I also stayed up late packing and shipping my instruments. You can get a taste of the chaos below....
Getting here: I was a bit nervous about traveling, as I was bringing my bass clarinet on board as a carry-on for the first time, and I had three flights lined up (Palm Springs to Phoenix to Chicago to Providence).
American Airlines states that you can bring a non-standard-carry-on-sized musical instrument on board, as long as it fits in the overhead bins and there is enough space at the time of boarding. Fortunately, my bass clarinet case is neither tall nor wide--just 30" long. Though they are technically not obligated to make room for special items, the flight attendants on my second and third flights were kind enough to move luggage around in the overhead to fit my instrument.
A fun aside: on my second flight, the bins by my seat were all full. I skipped my row and sought the help of the attendants at the back of the plane, and there, one of them told me he is a clarinetist, too! While we were waiting for the aisle to clear, he pulled out one of the rolling service bins for me to use as a table, and asked me if I'd open the case up to show the instrument to some other passengers also hanging out in the back. When I told them about the show, he said, "Wow, I feel like I'm in the presence of a celebrity!" (Unfortunately, this 5 seconds of fame did not get me moved into first class. :( BUT, they did take care of my instrument, and that's all I care about!)
... After all the moving and packing and flying, I made it! The company that I'm touring with has an Uber account that we can use for work-related travel. Of course, Lyft pickup is right outside the baggage claim door, while Uber has a very strange pick-up spot at the Providence airport...
That's all for now, folks!