Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Baggage Handlers at Midway

I was just looking back at all of the posts I made about my trip to Iowa. I sure seem thrilled by it all. I'm guessing it will be the only significant trip I'm going to be taking this year, mostly thanks to this unending project , so I'm milking it for all that I can. In another year I'll finally be free to get back to taking some longer trips. Finally.

Landing in Chicago

On the flight back home I had another chance to take a video of my bass being manhandled by the baggage guys. I guess at the end of a long day, a gigantic "99.5" pound bass trunk is about the last thing a baggage handler wants to see coming down the conveyor belt. I sort of wish I hadn't seen this, but it's good to be aware. Anyway, the trunk really is built for this kind of treatment (I hope) and there was no damage to the trunk or the bass whatsoever. Still, this is one scary video featuring one very angry baggage handler. The video from the flight on the way out was a lot less horrifying.

So far the cost of the trunk and the risks I have taken in flying with it since 1997 have all been well worth the playing experiences that I've been able to enjoy, all because I happen to own a bass trunk. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • My first cruise ship gig, which included 2 months in the Caribbean, crossing the Panama Canal several times and 2 months cruising all around Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, and Greece. I'll never forget playing out on the deck, serenading the people on land with Italian tunes as we entered Venice for the first time.
  • A big band theme cruise with Tex Benecke, and crossing the Atlantic playing several additional big band theme cruises.
  • A New Years Eve gig with the Artie Shaw band in Tunica, Mississippi.

  • A few gigs with the all-female big band Diva.

  • Four years on the road travelling all over the USA with the In the Mood show.

  • Playing with the awesome Jack Million Big Band from Belgium at the Glenn Miller Festival.
I probably wouldn't have been able to do any of these things without a bass trunk, so I'm extremely happy that I made the investment. However I may be thinking twice about flying as much in the future. I've heard all of the horror stories and one of these days it will probably be my turn too. I really hope I'll be able to stop before that happens, but I'm not finished quite yet.

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