After an evening at the Gaslight trailer park, we closed the distance to El Paso, and had a whirlwind day of schools with one truck stop thrown into the mix.
We had an impromptu clean up session at 8 in the morning and almost got ourselves stuck with a 10 minute setup time. The first show of the day can sometimes feel rough, but after we rubbed all of the sleep out of our eyes using the leaf blower, we were fine. One notable event did occur however, during the series of demonstrations based on principles of gravity and energy transfer, we shot our little raquet ball so far into the air that it landed in the gully next to the parking lot. I should also mention we were outside for the Bridges school.
After retrieving the lost rubber object, we pulled out and made our way into the center of El Paso for bus parts, and our second show of the day. On our way to Paul Moreno, we picked up an entire box full of filters for the vegetable oil system. Very exciting!! Now we won't have a repeat of our trials on the road to Las Cruces. Once we arrived at the school, we ate a hurried cafeteria lunch while talking with the vice principal. She told us we should be ready to perform for approximately 100 students, and my jaw dropped. It was a big crowd to face down on the second day, but they seemed to keep better attention than smaller audiences I have seen in the past. Really, I was just happy watching Shane conduct an orchestra of boom-wackers while standing in a sea of kids (boom-wacker is a hollow plastic tube of variable length).
We then took the cramped downtown residential streets to the El Paso Boys and Girls club to round out the schedule for the day. On a side note, this particular clubhouse had been in operation for roughly twice the amount of time I have been alive: there is serious history in those walls. Unfortunately, all that history is bad for acoustics. The gym in which we performed echoed so much that your previous sentence destructively interfered with the one being made. I left with the impression that for some people in the crowd, our show was like a television in a room with its volume down.
The next stop is San Angelo, and another packed day goes by.
The stretch between El Paso and San Angelo features a tremendous fatality rate increase due to a recent oil boom in the latter city, so we found another route.
About 7 minutes after giving away our broken microwave, we watched as a boy from our last show went past the bus dragging the machine by its cord tied to the back of his bike. His name? Noey.