Tuesday, 01/24/06 - 12:04 pm.

I spent the morning shopping with my sister in law, to the point of forgetting that day my dream of seeing Aerosmith in concert was coming true.

My brother came for me at 4 o'clock, with the plans of leaving his car in the hospital he works at, and then take a train downtown, to the Toyota Center. I loved that idea, and the hour-long trip was very uneventful, in spite of the low temperature and a stoned guy in the train.

When we got off, we still had to walk about four blocks. All I could see was buildings, but suddenly we walked around a corner and I could see a little dome. I started to feel all shaky, even though I wasn't shaking at all. I kept it cool, actually, even I was surprised at how calm I was.

We stood in line, and I took a picture of the marquee. Suddenly, I hear people screaming behind me, and when I turned around, a huge black bus was driving by. "It's them", my brother said, urging me to do something. But there was nothing to do, and we walked into the venue. I bought a t-shirt and a poster, both too expensive in my opinion, but also, at least for me, items that I could never have any other chance to buy anywhere, anytime else.

I was a little disappointed by my seat. See, the stage had two ramps on the sides, and a catwalk that went into the Fan Club members, the VIP crowd, I suppose. The ramp on my side was in front of section 123, and I was on section 124. When I was told I was on row 11, I thought it'd be at the back, but actually it was the third row from my stage, about 35 degrees from the ramp. Ok, so they weren't that bad.

The first time I blew it was when the venue was still empty. My brother and I had taken our seats, and I was trying my camera, realizing my pictures wouldn't turn out very well, because of the shitty zoom and the lightning. I noticed roadies going back and forth, and I recognized a guy that works for them, on stage, talking to other people. It took me a while to realize that one of those people was a very casual Steven Tyler. Someone behind me yelled "Hi, Steven!", but the guy was minding his own bussiness.

My brother started to push, "get up, take a picture!", but I was embarrassed, thinking I could annoy him. That, and I was a little comatose. Then he started to walk up the ramp, and two guys got up to take a picture. I did too, but the venue was dark and I was scared to use the flash (plus, we'd called the venue in the morning and we were told no flash allowed). By the time I realized I was invisible to him and I could stand in fron of him to take a good shot, he'd turned around.

He kept walking around the stage, and asked something to people behind the stage and eventually left. My brother said you were lucky, we could've missed that had we come a bit later; shame you didn't do a thing, though, you could've done more than just stare. He's like that, he rubs stuff in your face, half-joking. I felt very stupid, but I said "at least I was here", unlike the fat guy next to me, who went for a beer while Steven was hanging about. I took twe pictures (1, 2), but you can't really tell it's him. So, I spent the next hour and a half feeling regretful.

At 7:30, Lenny hit the stage. My brother had kept bugging me, that it seemed Lenny was the main show, and actually, by a lot of the publicity I heard, it was true. But nah. He rocked, though, oh, my God. He and his band are so good; I particularly loved the drummer gal, and the trumpet guy.

This is when I finally knew what a rock concert felt like. The beating of the drums had replaced the beating of my own heart, and it was like the music came from within my own body. It was loud, but my ears didn't hurt. The vibrations were unbelievable.

When Lenny's show began, my brother told me to move to section 123. The first three rows were empty, "go, if the owners of those seats show you up, you just move a couple of seats; try to stay there". So I did, and the security guys didn't tell me anything, even though I kept jumping from row to row and seat to seat, until I was in front of the ramp. I was alone, nobody around me, and I thought that maybe I could get away with it for my own benefit. I'd already taken a good shot of Lenny and his band on stage.

The last song was are you gonna my way. Of all the songs I know from him, that's the one I like the most, so I stood up. And he started to walk up the ramp, and stood right in front me! He looked down on me, smiled and I shot (didn't turn out that well, because my camera sucks at movement, and he obviously was moving a lot). Wow, the guy has a smile to melt for.

His performance finished, and the stage began to change drastically. Then, a lady comes and asks two guys behind me to show her their tickets. They said they didn't have them with them, they were with two friends, blablabla, I thought they were getting kicked out. Then came some sort of manager, and I have no idea what they said to him but they stayed, "if no one claims these seats". These guys even shook hands with the security guard on one side of the ramp. They started to speak in spanish, and later I learned one was from Bolivia and other from Peru.

I thought I was getting away with my seat. The security guard only asked me what time it was (nine o'clock). But I guess the situation with these two guys alarmed the seating people, so the lady came and asked me to show her my ticket. I told her where my real seat was, and asked her if I could stay here if no one claimed the seat. She said I had good seats, I hadn't been relocated, so I had to go back. I'm not good at arguing, so I said ok. I didn't feel that bad, actually. "At least I dared to do it, and I got a close shot of Lenny".

My brother told me that as soon as the lights went out and Aerosmith hit the stage, I got back to where I was. "Once the concert begins, no one will tell you to move".

They did tell me to move, eventually. Closer to the stage. But more on that later.

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