Night Walk: “Happy Halloween!”

Happy Halloween! 11:38 PM


A budding Halloween night ‘tradition’ is to go to bed early – before 9:30 PM – then sleep until 1:30 AM, wake up, and record Ghost to Ghost A.M.. It’s a special show of Coast to Coast A.M.; callers and show staff tell ghost stories until 5 A.M.. Most stories are supposed to be true, others obviously are not. The host, George Noory, usually ends the night with a reading of “The Raven” by Edgar Allen Poe. It’s usually entertaining.

As you can read, I am not asleep. Grrr.

So, to pass the time, I’ll ponder a big decision I have to make in the next couple of weeks:

Do I sit out this upcoming Drum & Bugle Corps season?

I completed my Rookie Season with the Cincinnati Tradition Drum & Bugle Corps about 2 months ago (hard to believe!). I documented a lot of that season in my ‘A ‘Borg and a Baritone’ posts; one of the things in those posts were the numerous foot issues that flared up in May and especially July and August. Well, 2 months later and there’s little change in my right foot, although the left foot is overall better. That right foot is one of 3 things that have me questioning the 2020 season.

Foot Issues – I am going to make a follow-up appointment withe the Podiatrist that I saw in August. I got a pair of (expensive Brooks) shoes that he recommended, spent about 7 weeks stretching my heel and right calf (in essence, the heel problems had not only caused some significant tightness in my calf, it also was causing a loss of range of motion in my foot), and resting my feet as much as possible. As of tonight, there’s still a lot of pain, off-and-on calf tightness, and pain in the right big toe joint (that I also wrote about). I want to see what the next steps are, before committing to a new season.

Graduation – After 23 years, post-HS graduation, I am within 2 semesters of earning a Bachelors’ Degree!!! I have 12 credit hours and a Capstone project left. I plan on taking 6 On Demand hours in about 10 days. Once they are finished, the final 6 hours and the Capstone are what are conflicting with the 2020 season: I would be in classes – again – when the outdoor rehearsal season starts, potentially when the first 2 or 3 competitions start. Can I make the two work together?

The 3rd, and biggest potential, issue: money and vehicle. The cost of the season itself ($900) is not a problem; the problem is traveling to and from Cincinnati on Greyhound. An average bus trip is about $65, round trip, with fees. I also had to take Uber from Downtown Cincinnati to wherever I was staying for the weekend (hotels or friend’s houses) and, most of the time, from there to and from the practice field (in the summer) or the rehearsal site (in the spring). The Spring trips were only one day a weekend, twice a month: not too bad with costs. From late April to September, it was both weekend days, every weekend. Those Summer weekends, not counting hotel costs (if I stayed there), were at least $125/weekend, between Greyhound and Uber; well over $250/weekend when I stayed at a hotel for Friday and Saturday nights. I took out a small loan to get through the end of July, all of August, and Finals weekend. Instead of spending that much every weekend, I’d rather build my savings back up to get a car, and either march the last 1/4 of a season or wait until 2021 and march, with a vehicle and healed/repaired feet.

CT’s Opening Night is Sunday, November 24th. I don’t plan on waiting until the last minute to decide on this season, so I’ve given myself until the 17th to let CT’s staff know that I am or am not marching this upcoming season. Other than a mouthpiece, I have most everything else for Opening Night (water jug, proper shoes, proper marching clothes, pencils, breathing tubes, binder, music stand, lip balm, and baseball hat; I need a new dot book). I just have to decide if that ‘Opening Night’ is 2020 or 2021.

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