I woke up with a terrible case of bed head. Or was it couch head? Couch head was worse, I suppose. Carynne woke me by very gently rocking my shoulder back and forth and whispering my name.
I blinked, unsure where I was for a moment. Then came that moment of “oh, right.”
“What time is it?” I whined. I could see sunlight.
“Time to get moving,” she said. “I ordered breakfast for you, though.”
“You did?” I sat up and a bedspread slid from my shoulders to the couch.
“Yes, and you’re going to eat it. You never had dinner, did you?”
“Daron, look. I can’t actually be nursemaiding you all the time. The crew is way too big for me to keep track of whether you’ve eaten or not. So you’re going to have to do it yourself.” She said this all in a pretty mild manner, not scolding at all.
Which didn’t keep me from feeling like I was five. I got up and went into the suite’s bathroom to splash my face. “When I’m hungry, I’ll eat.”
“Whenever food’s in front of you, you’re hungry. Most of the time we’ll have it in the schedule. But when it isn’t, you have to eat more than two cocktail pickles and a slice of baloney.”
“Hey, I ate at least two slices of baloney.” My hair was tragic. When it had gotten long I had gotten used to it lying down on its own. Just a little shorter, though, and it could stick up stupidly. “Is the breakfast coming here or to my room? I think I need to run my head under the water.”
“I ordered it to here, but I can redirect it easily enough.” She had a clipboard in her hand and was already fully dressed, makeup on, shoes on. Her hair was extra-shiny like she’d had it done and conditioned. Which she probably had. “Are you packed?”
“I never really unpacked.”
“Okay, well, go back to your room and do what you have to. I’ll send the food there. Wake-up calls are about to start for everyone else, and then it’s going to get busy in here.”
I went back to my room and discovered a note under the door. I thought at first it was the hotel bill, but then I looked at it. It was a timetable for the band and crew for today. It was all about travel since the next show wasn’t until tomorrow.
We were flying to San Francisco, which was fortunate, since it would’ve been twelve to fourteen hours by bus, but once there, we were going to be tour busing from place to place for a while. I didn’t envy Carynne. Just absorbing the details on the single sheet for the single day was taxing to me. She had to know where the whole three ring circus was going and when all the time.
I stuck my head under the sink and then brushed it wet, which tamed it, then changed my clothes, carefully packing Christmas Cat Elvis into the Ovation’s case. Then I plucked the big dark rose from the top of the bouquet and stuck that in next to him, in the neck compartment.
I had just switched the TV on when room service knocked and brought in a tray. I’m sure it looked funny, but I got into the fully made bed, fully clothed, and had the waiter put the tray on my lap, the coffee and juice on the side table.
Thank goodness we were on West Coast time, so to my body it felt like noon. I found MTV and left it on while I ate. Two eggs over-easy, bacon, potatoes, a grilled tomato, four triangles of buttered toast, jelly, orange juice, a small mug of milk… oh, wait, that was cream for the coffee. I drank most of it before figuring that out. I poured the rest into the coffee pot and followed that with sugar. I didn’t end up drinking much coffee though. Too hot and by then I was full, having devoured everything else that had been on the tray.
It was kind of nice to have some time alone. Some slow time. I had a feeling there wouldn’t be much of that in the coming weeks.
Once nine a.m. came, everything sped up. Vans to the airport. Check-in. Security. The usual discussion about the guitar.
As soon as the plane’s engines began to hum, I fell asleep against the bulkhead. I woke up partway through the flight with Ziggy asleep on my shoulder.
I just closed my eyes again. What was I going to do, pinch him? Shove him off? There was no reason to. It was harmless. Carynne was in the next seat over, facedown on her tray table. We just looked like a bunch of people who needed sleep.
Besides, I kind of liked it. I know you’re terribly surprised by this news.