My mom and I invited her sister, Dorothy, to the county fair for an outdoor country music concert. Aunt Dorothy loved everything about that genre of music – her record collection, the TV shows, and the Grand Ole Opry on the radio. Several months ago, when she stopped humming and whistling her favorite country tunes, my mom and I wondered if she was having health issues. That’s when she was diagnosed with the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
On the night of the concert, Mom and I let Aunt Dorothy know that the star of the show was Eddie Rabbitt, who was in Dorothy’s Top Five of entertainers with his great voice, hit songwriting ability, and good looks. Eddie was performing in the evening on an outdoor stage at the fairgrounds, where everyone brought lawn chairs. My mom set up Dorothy’s chair between hers and mine. Even though our chairs were quite a distance from the stage, that did not dampen Aunt Dorothy’s excitement one bit. She was ready to see and hear one of her favorite country singers in person.
The entire crowd was clapping, chanting “Ed-die! Ed-die!” and cheering in anticipation. When Eddie finally came on stage, he immediately went into singing and moving to his first song. The expression of delight on Dorothy’s face could have illuminated the entire evening fairgrounds. During Eddie’s second song, Aunt Dorothy started making comments. “He’s looking right at me,” she said.
“Who?” I said, thinking she meant someone in the chair by us.
“Dorothy, there is no way Eddie can see us here in the dark and this far away,” I said.
“Oh, yes, he can,” she quickly disagreed with me.
A little later she commented, “He’s pointing at me!”
“No, there is no way he can see us.”
Aunt Dorothy’s comments (and my eye-rolling) continued into the next song.
That’s when my mom jokingly said, “He’s winking at me.”
Aunt Dorothy argued, “No, he’s winking at me.”
All three of us ended up laughing, making up comments, and thoroughly enjoying Eddie’s music.
To end his concert, Eddie sang his 1980 hit “I Love a Rainy Night.” Aunt Dorothy sang along with the familiar song and clapped with the tempo. Eddie sang the lines: “I love to hear the thunder, watch the lightning when it lights up the sky.”
Just then, lightning flashed in the sky some distance away! The entire crowd gasped. My mom and I looked at each other and laughed in disbelief.
Eddie’s response to the lightning was, “How about that light show!”
I glanced at Aunt Dorothy, just to see her reaction. She was looking at Eddie, not up at the lightning. I was thinking she hadn’t seen the flash of lightning at all.
In the distance, the lightning continued during Eddie’s song, but no thunder and no rainy night.
At the end of the song and concert, we folded up our chairs and walked back to the car. I asked Aunt Dorothy, “Did you like Eddie and his concert?”
Aunt Dorothy said, “He sure puts on a great light show.”
I had to agree with her on that one.