By Heather Nale
The evening of Sunday, August 28 and the early morning hours of Monday, August 29 were the best hours of my life. I got to see my future husband, Pat Monahan, and some other guys, live at the Kentucky State Fair.
I could hardly contain the excitement when my brother, my sister-in-law, and my best friend Paige and I found our seats in Freedom Hall. The stage was already set up for the opening act: Matt Nathanson. The concert began at 8 and the energy quickly filled the room as Matt Nathanson launched into a song nobody knew. Everyone sang along to his cover of Soft Cell’s “Tainted Love,” and everyone booed when he teased the audience with a few chords of Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead or Alive.” He continually made jokes about tight leather pants and bananas, laptop power cords and devil tails. At this time, Paige and I had to go to the bathroom. We waited in line only to hear Nathanson repeatedly channel his inner Michael Jackson by shrieking “yee-hoo.” We didn’t miss much. We came back to our seats just in time for Nathanson to sing his current hit “Come On Get Higher” and everyone sang along. Nathanson was a great live performer.
The twenty minutes before the Train set was the longest twenty minutes of my life. My little group decided to seat hop to a better location, and we ended up next to a very loud, cuddly drunk man. But all of a sudden, a loud train whistle sounded and I screamed. My favorite band was coming on stage. Paige and I broke out into our best Train impersonations, moving our arms like wheels and screaming. Then they were there. Pat Monahan was on stage. I about peed.
Train of course sang their current hits: “If It’s Love,” “Hey Soul Sister” and “Marry Me,” and older songs “Calling All Angels,” and “Meet Virginia.” Pat walked through the audience during “Marry Me.” He walked right in front of where I was sitting. I can proudly boast that I was less than twenty feet away from one of the most gorgeous 42-year-olds ever. The band walked off stage and I was so shocked. They hadn’t sung my song. They left “Drops of Jupiter” out. The lights stayed out. Then, on the big screen, a montage of the band frolicking through the flowers came on followed by Pat Monahan being carried away by a bird and my screaming of, “COME BACK, PAT!” The lights came on and there was Train, playing the opening music to MY song. I screamed so loud that the obnoxious drunk man turned around and stared. Then came the tears. I cried. They were the happiest tears of my life. The whole audience sang along. When it came time for the na na na’s, the lights shone bright and Pat stopped singing, letting the audience sing them. It was a wonderful moment. After that moment, I could have died and not worried about it.
Then came the main event. Maroon 5. The lights went out and the whole stadium screamed. It was a fabulous moment. Paige grabbed my arm so hard it left bruises. The band came out singing their newest song “Move Like Jagger.” Adam Levine danced and skipped around the stage in his tight skinny jeans. He performed “Misery,” “This Love,” and other hits. Maroon 5 rocked the stage. The band played very well and Adam sounded fantastic live. I didn’t think he would be able to hit all those high notes live, but he was great. The only downside to this wonderful night was getting home at 2:00 in the morning. I went to school and failed my first hour math test. But it was totally worth it. I stood less than 20 feet away from Pat Monahan.