September 28, 2016

On Tour With Belle Noire: Day 23


After a night of intense drinking in New Orleans, my body woke me up at 8:30am and told me it was time to start my day. Thankfully I didn’t feel like death and honestly felt a little bit energized. I took this rare opportunity to gather up my clothes and do some laundry at the Days Inn. Even though there’s only 5 days left of tour, I underestimated the amount of gym shorts that were necessary to travel the country with over a month’s time. I constructed a make-shift workstation in the small laundry room and did some work while all my devices charged for the road ahead to Austin.

Call it luck, repetition, or a young body but, I was the only one unscathed by our night in New Orleans. Dan seemed to be holding up rather well in comparison to Rob, Joey, and Roman. Our brief nap before late check-out had us scrambling all of our belongings in the van before the 8 hour drive to Austin. Appearing to be the most capable to drive, I took the first shift in heading out of Louisiana.

There are a couple perks of driving on tour. Firstly, you get to choose your own soundtrack. We all have varying music tastes with some overlaying, but it’s still nice to hear what you want to hear. Secondly, driving keeps your mind focused. It’s too easy to fall asleep while co-piloting or laying down on your bench and time seems to move slower when you’re in that position.

Being in the deep south made me bust out the old-school country playlist for the drive. A little Garth Brooks, Kenny Chesney and Alan Jackson serenaded the van as we passed through the bayous of Louisiana. Joey was the only one who showed any enthusiasm in my playlist as the collective groan from the rest of the van ensued. Say what you will about country music, but damn if it doesn’t have an uplifting beat as the piercing light sunburns you even more.

It was a slow day of driving, but I still felt like I took a lot in. Louisiana surprised me in its beauty and hospitality. If I had to choose between Alabama, Mississippi, Florida or Louisiana for my humid weather experience, I’d choose Louisiana. Knowing the history of the last 10 years made the scenery eerie and enthralling all at once. There are completely different lifestyles all over the state. Up until this point I’d only ever seen them portrayed in movies and TV shows. This trip has allowed me to see everything I’ve always wanted to see firsthand and I’m excited to see even more.

Written by: Patrick Marion

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