Asheville Meet and Greet Recap ncgurrl Due to a very generous invitation I was present at the Asheville charity meet & greet during the Timeless tour. Generic instructions to meet at the box office were evidently sent by someone who did not know the Biltmore box office is three miles from the venue. Everyone tried to be helpful but it took a while to sort out the correct location of meeting at the house by the lions at 6:00 pm. Even that led to more hurry up and wait before Jerome showed up to lead us back stage. Off we went down the steps and across the ‘football’ field. For everyone else that was start, build up speed, remind Jerome there was a pokey one in the group (me and my cane), slow down and wait. Once we got to the white fence screening back stage the group was split. The charity group went first while the fan club group was directed to wait. Once behind the barrier we were directed to wait in an area next to the food service section-- in the sun. The choice was to sit on a bench in the sun or stand in a scrap of shade by the perimeter fence behind the trash cans. I picked the bench because by then my aches had become pains. The location felt a bit intrusive because just a few feet away some of the cast and crew were eating and talking. Ruben, Felix and the guitarists were there. When Ruben came up to the food service area someone behind me asked him if they had a vegan meal for him. He noted that they had black-eyed pea cakes that were ok but what he wanted was the watermelon. Ruben asked if we wanted any but we declined Later Ruben brought us all ice cold bottles of water. Heaven. Jerome took us up onto the stage for a look around. I was not impressed with the wood stairs as they were a bit steep. They did not look solid but were. The view of the seating area and house was impressive. The performance area, on the other hand, seemed tiny. We were led back down the stairs, me with the assistance of Jerome, and back to our hot spot to await Ruben and Clay. I again sat on the bench. Ruben arrived first as he was still in the craft service area. He pulled up a small table and two chairs. After shaking hands, Ruben sat down directly in front of me. Clay walked in and shook hands and introduced himself to everyone. He then stood right by my shoulder. Next was the obligatory question of where we lived. I said Riverside, California which led to Clay and Ruben figuring out where that was. I told Ruben that if he was ever driving from LA to Las Vegas to visit the Wyn’s he could stop by my house for a vegetarian meal. Ruben hollered at Clay that there was another vegetarian in the house and asked me my favorite recipe. My mind went blank before blurting out Puerto Rican red rice and beans without the ham. The question of how many other shows we would be seeing led to Geekette’s reminder of “the city of Vermont” and Clay ragging on Felix. Clay went into a little spiel about the two charities which led to me asking Ruben if he had an inclusion element in his music camps. He turned to Clay and said that was not something they had discussed but maybe should. He and Clay then talked about how that could be done. Someone mentioned funding it through a grant. When I said that sounded good, Mr. Snarky-pants asked me if I was on the grant committee. I told him no but if he helped write the grant it should get approval and if it did come about they name it Camp Linda. Clay responded “I don’t think so.” He then added maybe they could make me a certificate. Ruben did ask Clay if they did a camp session would Clay visit. It was a light conversation but maybe it planted a seed of an idea the two men can nourish. The discussion went on from there. I was really impressed with the approachability of both Clay and Ruben. They drew people out and ran wherever the conversation was going. From Geekette’s recap you can see that both Ruben and Clay were quite chatty. I had Clay and Ruben sign my walking cane. Photo time was so casual that we had the opportunity to get photos of Ruben and Clay while we waited for the photographer to get set. I think the casualness led to a bit of overtime as I heard Clay and Jerome agree to tighten that part up for the other groups. After the meet & greet we got out pick of a t-shirt or a tote bag. I took the bag and then bought a shirt. Team Clay was friendly and helpful. I just wish the weather had been as hospitable. It was beyond hot.