You know how you go to some big destination like New York City or Paris or something and it can be really overwhelming? Like my goodness however shall I do everything? What if I don't see and do all the Important Things one is supposed to see and do here?
Well going to Fort Bragg was kind of... the opposite of that. The big event for the weekend was their annual Quilt Show.
It isn't exactly a bustling metropolis, but it sure is pretty.
In terms of nightlife, the whole town seemed to shut down around nine. Presumably the downtown bars were still open but none of them were that close to the hotel and I was wimpering about the cold so we ended up hanging out at the local bowling alley lounge on Saturday night (we would have actually bowled but the lanes were closed-- see how that works?).
We walked into the lounge. It was quiet and dim and smelled faintly of cigarettes. We sat down on the cracked vinyl barstools and the lady bartender greeted us with a friendly "Hey there, you're not from around here."
"Why do you say that?"
"Because I don't know you." There was a sign on the wall: Sorry! We do not accept credit cards or out of town checks. LOCAL CHECKS ONLY.
The place was fairly empty with only four or five other patrons and a great many handlebar mustaches and missing teeth. At around ten, the bartender handed us a binder and said "this should get going pretty soon."
We opened the binder and realized it was full of karaoke music. I looked around the bar and thought: seriously?
YES. These people were serious about their karaoke and anxious for it to start.
A few more customers trickled in and people were getting restless. One old man came in the door and said "the paper said karaoke at nine o'clock! I'm ready la la la LAAAAAA."
Finally the man in charge of the karaoke showed up, shoved the pool table to the edge of the dance floor, and started up the karaoke machine. And let me tell you, these people were INTO IT. One woman even brought her own CDs-- and they must have been karaoke CDs because the words came up on screen so that means she has her own karaoke setup at home.
First we went up together and sang Space Oddity. And then we picked our individual songs because, well, with only a small number of people in the bar everyone was singing four or five songs. I had never gone up by myself before because I've really only been to karaoke places where the people are really, obnoxiously good. Like in LA where they are all trying to get "discovered" or whatever. This place was less intimidating and much more awesome and divey.
Does this give you a good idea of what the place was like?
So then I picked a song. And I was nervous.
"Come on, get up there."
"There's like seven other people, you'll be fine."
So I did it.
Please don't tell me how bad I sound because I ALREADY KNOW. But I did it and it was so fun I'll probably do it again! Lookout world.