Was it Worth it?

In October of 2005, David and I were fortunate to attend a concert by the renowned group, Cream. As many people know, Cream were considered the world’s first supergroup because their 3 members, Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce, and Ginger Baker, had been members of other successful groups prior to forming Cream. Although Cream were active from only 1966 to 1968, their popularity has never waned. David and I were thrilled to find out they had reunited for a few performances and we bought tickets to their show at Madison Square Garden as soon as they went on sale. The show was scheduled on October 25, 2005. As fate would have it, the Cream concert occurred the day after Hurricane Wilma devastated South Florida. David and I were absolutely thrilled to see Cream perform (it had been 37 years since they last performed together) and we were already in New York City by the time the hurricane became of concern to our area. As expected, the concert was fantastic! And, as of this writing, it is the only concert I have ever attended in Madison Square Garden. Not only was the show perfect, in every way, but the “Garden” was also amazing! It’s the only concert venue where I have been served strawberries in my champagne! At my seat! Our return trip was delayed by several days, and when we finally got home after a series of delays and mishaps, we found a tree partially blocking our street, lots of spoiled food in the refrigerator and freezer, and a flood inside our house caused by a roof collapse. We were without electricity for quite some time and the repairs to our house took 18 months to complete (all the while, much of our furniture was covered by plastic tarps to protect it when it rained). Was it worth it to see Cream at Madison Square Garden, given what happened while we were gone? Would I do it again if I knew how things would turn out? Yes and yes! I have absolutely no regrets. I got to see Cream in Madison Square Garden! I am grinning a huge grin as I type this!

The trip to New York City to see Cream was a long time in the planning.  We bought tickets to the show as soon as it was announced.  Hotel and flight bookings followed.  I’m sure we had other items on our agenda for the trip, but seeing Cream in “The Garden” was the focus and a highlight of our concert going.  I have to say that time has faded some of the memories of that trip, but trudging through the rain and puddles to get to the show has not.  You see, hurricanes are funny things.  They pop up at inconvenient times, and of course, Wilma was not on the horizon when the tickets or flights were bought.  In fact, Wilma was not forecast as a threat to our area even when we left on the trip.  We were on the edges of the cone, but that’s how it goes.  Wilma was storm 23 that year, a hurricane season which went into overtime.  And, Wilma followed us to New York.  Its trajectory sent foul weather that direction a day or 2 before the show.  Our walk to/from “The Garden” was wet!  We had to extend our stay in the hotel and then we had an amazingly difficult adventure getting home by driving from New York in a rental car (NY airports were closed) to Baltimore, then flying to Fort Myers (Fort Lauderdale airport was closed) and renting a car for the drive to the east coast, where most of the traffic lights were out.  But, the thrill of experiencing Cream kept us going.  And, other than a few shows that year, they never played together again; today Eric Clapton is the last man standing.  We were upset by the damage to our house and landscaping.  Lots of work transpired on our arrival home (which was preceded by a call from a neighbor saying “You aren’t going to like what your roof looks like” – and he was correct, part of it was in the neighbor’s pool.)  We got to know FEMA and blue roof tarps.  We dealt with insurance claims and power outages (thankfully, we had a generator and coolish October weather).  Things like this are a matter of perspective.  The damage to our house would have happened regardless of whether we were in town or in NY.  We would have had a frightening time at home during the storm, so we might as well have seen Cream.  No regrets for sure.  They rocked the house as Wilma rocked ours!


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