Texas

I’m grateful for this housing site.

It’s after lights out now. I’m lying in my sleeping bag, latticed ceiling above, air vents humming. The artificial coolness is more than I could have ever asked for after 10 hours of rehearsal. We don’t always get to sleep in gyms with AC and its a treasure we relish, not a commodity we expect.

The fields were ok. No turf or fine grassed stadium to rehearse in, as we only get a handful of those on tour. The ensemble field had anthills and a couple of exposed hazards that we learned to avoid. The baseball field we tracked on in the afternoon had some spongy, muddy ground and some anthills as well, but we still tracked our most athletic show excerpts in the midst of its most sketchy geography and got better.

A lady stopped by our sectional today to personally welcome us to the school. There is a banner that the school’s marching band made just for us that hangs outside the gym. “Welcome!”and our corps name were carefully painted in dripping blue and yellow letters.

I am grateful that my corps was allowed to stay in this housing site.

It’s an honor in drum corps to be allowed to stay in any housing site. The building and its community open their doors, their hospitality, and their curiosity to the corps. We stumble only half aware of the school layout into the building in the middle of the night, our bodies pulling us back into a mandatory sleep til morning. The field liners wake up early and turn blank open stretches of grass into intricate performance grids. We rehearse hours and hours at the school, time for us passing in that usual curious off kilter way. Less than 24 hours of arriving we have left the housing site, its quirks and cons and advantages only a mere memory.

The South, North, East, Up, Down, and Center of the Universe have always offered to house us and have always taken care of us. Without places to sleep, without places to push forward inside our drum corps bubble of raw, bloody, sweaty pursuits of excellence, this activity would not be able to exist.

We make do with anything thrown our way; we let no imperfections stop us on our quest to be perfect.

I’m thankful for what we have. Every drum corps should be.

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