Marni and Traci and I follow the van in Marni's car. Our first gas stop is in Suffern New York, where nestled back in the woods stands the studio once owned by the sax player in Spyro Gyra. This is where we mixed the first version of the Red album with Bill Klatt in 2000. At the gas station, the Middle Eastern guys are insane with late night delirium, screeching the tires of their cars and yelling to one another. When Travis tells the cashier it's his birthday, the guy fakes like he draws a gun on Travis. Then two Tibetan Monks in yellow robes enter the store, and walk down the aisle where the chips are, buy nothing, get in their mini van, and drive off.
Two hours later at a truck stop on Pennsylvania, Marni holds up a green license plate with a picture of Jesus on it. Below his joyous face it says, "Still Saving Lives".
"Why don't you put this on your trailer," Marni asks. Brilliant!
I buy the plate and a kick ass pair of sunglasses, stoned for the drive. Traci endures Marni and I talking the whole time about coke snorting friends, the band, and Travis. In the final hours of the drive, Travis takes over driving the van and in a patch of dense fog hits the side of a concrete highway divider going 75. The caravan continues and after a while I am not sure if it happened. 20 minutes later my cell rings.
"Did you see that?"
"Yeah. That was nuts."
As I stare at the trailer I wonder if its my eyes playing tricks or if the axle is bent. Then I fixate on the plate. Still Saving Lives. Yes, I guess so.