So, the other weekend, I had something really weird happen. (I know! You're thinking..."something weird happened to you, Marianne? Impossible!") But it did.
My friend, Dr. J, has spent the last year in New Zealand. She's been back since November, but with my business travel, her setting up her new practice and visiting her family and spending time with her snuggle-bunny, we haven't had much time to catch up. So we decided to have a girls' getaway...just the two of us. It was still a little too cold for the beach...so when I suggested that we go to Jackson, MS to their famous St. Patty's day parade, she was all in.
The St. Patty's day parade in Jackson is something that everyone should experience. Statistics I've read say that approximately 65,000 attend the St. Patty's parade. It is big, big fun, believe me.
Me n' the good doctor, toasting our arrival.
We stayed at what used to be the King's Court Hotel...now it's a Hilton Garden Inn. We had a great stay Friday night, and a good time at the parade the next day. Hopefully I can get another more elaborate post on our actual trip...but this post is about the weird thing that happened.
After the parade, we ended up...as many people do, at Hal & Mal's. We were incredibly lucky and scored a table. We had just settled in and ordered a beer when a young man approached us and asked if he and a friend could share the table.
We had seen this fellow around and about our hotel over the past day & a half...and so agreed...it was SO freakin' crowded, it would have been a shame to waste the half of a table we weren't using.
Anyway, he goes and gets his friend...who turns out to be a really nice, pleasant, entertaining older fellow. Here's a couple of pictures of him:
Picture courtesy of Marianne's iPhone
We chatted for awhile...he asked what we did (Doctor and Engineer) and then several questions about our careers. He told us that the young friend he was with was in town and was working on the production of a Lifetime reality show being shot in Jackson (Bring It!). We thought that was all very cool. And plausible...we'd seen the young guy, Kevin, with a group of folks that could certainly be a "crew" of some sort. The older guy (he'd already introduced himself as "Danny") told us that he was retired.
By and by, we asked him what he was retired from & he told us that he used to be the drummer for Chicago. Wow! We were VERY impressed. He regaled us with many tales once we started pressing for them...but he in no way acted bragg-y or anything. Throughout the evening, several groups of people that worked with Kevin stopped in...all of them hugging Danny's neck and introducing him to people they knew.
We asked Danny how he ended up in Jackson, Mississippi and he told us that he had spent the last few years of his life living in Costa Rica...he had decided after his wife's death that he wanted to make a 3 month tour via train from Los Angeles to New York. He said that about a month ago, during this trek across our nation, he had a mild stroke about an hour outside of Jackson. He was taken to Jackson and treated and had been encouraged to take a sojourn for awhile before resuming his travels. Danny insisted on paying for our check, and caught a ride back to the hotel with us. He'd been walking all day, it was raining, he was recovering from a stroke, so sure...
Once we got back to the hotel, I went up, changed clothes and came back down to the lobby. Danny was sitting in the lobby, looking very unwell as a lady took his pulse (turns out she was a nurse). An ambulance had been called and several of the staff were scurrying around...getting him a glass of water...checking on the status of the ambulance, etc. Just listening to them I could tell that he indeed HAD been a guest at the hotel for several weeks and everyone liked him....everyone was, like me, a little impressed that here he was...someone sort-of famous. They repeated his name SEVERAL times in my hearing...Danny Seraphine.
But here's the thing...when Dr.J and I traveled back the next day, I had the opportunity to actually look up "Danny" from the band Chicago...and yes, Danny Seraphine was the drummer for Chicago. He was also playing a gig in Scotsdale, Arizona on the same weekend that we'd met "Danny" the recovering stroke victim in Jackson, MS.
Here are some Internet images I found of Danny Seraphine:
Picture courtesy of drummerworld.com
Picture courtesy http://music-illuminati.com/
I think the only thing authentic about the Danny I met was the Kangol he was sporting.
So, I'm confused. If you're going to pretend to be somebody...why pick the ex-drummer from a pretty good band from 30 years ago? And why not have your details right (Danny Seraphine never lived in Costa Rica and is 65; our guy talked endlessly about Costa Rica and repeatedly told us he was 70).
I still have an interesting story to tell...just one with a very perplexing ending.