Friday, August 17, 2012

In which we go to a Mumford show & knock our first item off the list!

Hi Friends, Chelsea here!   

So, before I get started with this triumphant account of us knocking the first item off our bucket list, I just wanted to clarify that we actually compiled the majority of the list on July 27, 2012. I am only stating this to be clear that there was no funny business involved whatsoever, and this item was firmly included on the list prior to its completion, and not included after-the-fact so we could easily cross something off. And for the record, boy was it not easy to accomplish. But since we’ve now completed this task, allow me the honor of crossing it off:

25. Go to a Mumford & Sons show.

You might be wondering why this item is included at all. At surface, it seems kind of trivial compared with some of our other more long-term or skill building tasks. But we insisted on including this one for a couple of reasons. Namely because we missed our opportunity to go to New Orleans Jazz Fest and see Mumford & Sons last Spring (you’ll notice that going to Jazz Fest is also on the list!) when our bus broke down and our cross country trip went defunct in evil quirky Albuquerque.  But also because they’re our favorite band, they’ve been a major source of musical inspiration (at least for me, taking up the banjo), and we’ve been wanting to fangirl out over them in the flesh for 17 months. Plus, our list is all about making things happen.

Oh, did I ever make things happen.

The morning of Bonnie’s birthday, I noticed a friend posted a status exclaiming their excitement about that evening’s Mumford & Sons show in Hoboken, NJ. I’d known about the show, but for some reason in my mind, it was taking place in September, and I had plenty of time to secure tickets. Wrong. How did I get things so wrong? How, you might be wondering, did I manage to remain ignorant of the one local date on my own favorite band’s tour? I wish I could answer this question for you, but truthfully, when it comes to planning for concerts (or planning, in general), I’m just the worst.

So... Mumford & Sons. In our city. The night of my wife’s 27th birthday. Not to mention the date of the kick-off of our bucket list. I tried to think of one good reason not to, and surely I could have found one (the price of the tickets alone would have driven away many), but I kept thinking, “I must, I must, I MUST get us tickets.”

Brief interlude for Bonnie’s perspective: Meanwhile on my end, my birthday also just happened to be my first day at my new job at the hospital. After waiting six weeks to start, my start date would, of course, be on my birthday. I suppose I could have asked to start on August 2nd, allow myself one last day of funemployment to enjoy my birthday, but the hospital’s benefits start on the 1st of the month. See that, friends? First adult 27 year-old decision made: health insurance over a day at the beach. Bam. Grown-up.

So it was my first day. I was sitting with my new boss when my phone went into an epileptic seizure of incoming text vibrations. My boss noticed my phone blowing up and I awkwardly admitted that it was actually my birthday and I was getting happy birthday texts. However, when I looked at my phone, it was actually a series of frantic texts from my wife, excitedly telling me that the Mumford & Sons show was actually that very night, not in September as we thought.


What do we do?? I was supposed to be having 10+ friends over for an evening of Ethiopian food, drinks, and dynamic conversation. Everyone was planning to be at my apartment in like 8 hours! I gave it about 30 seconds of thought. This was Mumford. This was our bucket list. And it was my G.D. birthday; I could bail if I wanted to. So at the risk of pissing off my friends with a totally flakey move, even for me, I gave the wife the OK to cancel the dinner and buy tickets - we were going to see Mumford. And damn was it worth it. I’ll let Chelsea finish the story now as she was the real hero of the hour.

Ahem, thank you beautiful wife! Ok, so. Four hours, three panic attacks, 28 craigslist and ebay emails (some of which ended in kind strangers commending me for being such a good friend, athankyouverymuch), one sketchy meet up outside the ABC building, and a canceled Ethiopian dinner party later, I held in my hand these two beautiful tickets:

Now, all that was left to do was anticipate the show and hope for good weather. The day was rainy and thunderstormy, and weather websites were doing nothing for my confidence regarding how things would go that evening. But I forced myself to think positively. Should it rain, I was ready to dance in it. This was Mumford. Mumford would not let us down, even if Mother Nature did.

Miraculously, she didn’t.

After the Storm
The sun peaked through just as we arrived at Pier A, and as it set, it cast the most beautiful colors over the New York City skyline. The kind of colors you only get after the storm (get it, get it? Mumford reference!). Our close friends Elise and Aaron also scooped tickets and joined us at the venue (thanks for pulling through last minute, friendulars!). We chattered excitedly as we made our way towards the stage.

Somehow, despite showing up approximately 30 minutes before Mumford took the stage, we found a spot ridiculously close. I mean... so close that we were in the crowd shots being shown to the audience towards the back (the pier goes back quite a ways). So close that we could see Marcus’s facial expressions. I doubt we’ll ever have the chance to get that close to them again. Check it:

Me, Bonnie, Elise, Aaron - so close!
And we even got closer as the show started and people tired of the rowdy crowd.

Anyway, the show was magic. The lights, the sounds, the set list, the dancing, the background of the water and New York’s amazing skyline, the firework finale . . . suffice to say, it was well worth the wait.

A beautiful show, with the NYC skyline as the backdrop
After the show ended and the fireworks concluded, we finished the night meeting up with some friends for karaoke in the East Village. Totally rocked “Just a Girl” by No Doubt (take that GOP and your anti-lady policies!). Totally busted out in a bar-wide rendition of the Star Spangled banner when there was a lull in song requests (ffff yeah Olympics!). And totally shut the bar down with “Little Lion Man” in celebration of our first glorious bucket list cross-off.  

Has anyone ever been this happy before?!
We’re super excited about what’s to come and off to a great start! And stay tuned, because in celebration of our first completed task, we will be recording a Mumford & Sons cover for the YouTubes, so you all can see our progress on list item #10, becoming a band. :]



  1. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am that you a)have lists and, b)do things on lists. And - OMG - my favorite bloggers are blogging again! Yay!

    So very thrilled to hear that the birthday celebration was memorable - and that Bonnie is gainfully employed and has health insurance.

    I loved this story. You might think this premature, but I think you are ready for that HuffPo endorsement.

    Your biggest fan (other than your mothers),


  2. George,

    As always, your undying support and flattery are appreciated and encouraged. We are so happy to be blogging again and having adventures, even just within our five boroughs. We should be posting a new story soon.

    Have you and Melissa started a bucket list of your own? I have a feeling you'd come up with a pretty good one.