Looking back on Saturday morning's escapade, I shouldn't have been surprised. I've never been good with directions; GPS was invented for people like me. This should have factored into my decision to venture out to local indie-pop band A Crowd of Small Adventures' music-video shoot at 10 a.m. at a dry lakebed in the middle of almost nowhere, but you know what they say about hindsight.
Cruising along I-15 North towards the APEX exit, I called Weekly freelance photographer Corlene Byrd, who was also attending the shoot, to confirm coordinates. She was going up solo as well, and was only a couple miles ahead of me on the freeway. Pulling off at our exit, Corlene dialed one of the video directors Mike Thompson, whose directions were simple: Drive out past the stop sign and take the first dirt road, supposedly the only dirt road, to the lakebed where shooting was about to begin.
Following one another; neither of our cars was designed for off-roading; we found our path in the dirt.
Or so we thought.
The remains of burnt furniture decaying in the distance were not one of the landmarks on our list. Backing my car up to turn around I plowed right into a desert bush. Back on the main road, a call from Corlene revealed I had taken half the bush with me. Sticks were now protruding from my fender.
After venturing down what seemed like our fifth wrong dirt road; each more ominous than the last; ACOSA's lead singer Jackson Wilcox, gave us a directional tip that proved more helpful. An hour past the recommended time of arrival, we finally pulled up to the "Bang Bang" video shoot, and I stepped out of my dirt-covered vehicle and slammed the door shut with relief. The feeling was short-lived. In my joy at arriving safely I hadn't thought to actually take my keys with me. I was in a nameless patch of desert, and I was locked out.
Two hours and multiple phone calls to AAA later; all of which were done on Corlene's phone while wearing ACOSA singer Jackson Wilcox's jacket since I'd left mine in the car with the keys; help arrived. As the confused AAA employee unlocked my car, he witnessed the ongoing video shoot that, at that moment, involved a zombie boxer chasing a 1930s-era-dressed Mike Weller across the desert.
Other than my personal catastrophe, the first day of shooting went well. I climbed into my car at the end of the day with specific directions on how to find my way out and a new appreciation for AAA. As I drove away, I realized that while I had come to witness the band's adventure, I'd actually found a small one of my own.