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You never forget your first

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By Carolyn Ten Broeck

 His name was Harry and he was nine years older than me but that’s not important.

What is important is, he was my first–back in 1978–and I have never forgotten him.

Growing up in the mountains, far removed from nightlife and city folk, I always knew my first would be special–and I would have to wait. Chances are the first would not happen in my hometown.

And it didn’t.

I had to go to college for it to  finally happen.

When I told my mother–and I did before it happened–she shook her head but didn’t say a word. 

Harry certainly wasn’t who she would have chosen for her first, although he was a catch, with his tight white pants and flowing platinum locks.

His smile was Ultra-Brite white and I couldn’t help but swoon every time I saw him.

And so with great anticipation, and some anxiety, “the night” arrived.

I remember taking extra care with my clothes and even though I didn’t  usually wear make up, I did that night. I was ready.

With a couple thousand of my peers watching, I waited for Harry as he and his entourage, The Sunshine Band, took their places not too far from me as the strains of “Shake Your Booty” filled the college gym.

Yes, Harry, also known as K.C., was my first live concert. It was a magical experience and  last Friday I was reminded of my first time as Tom and I  ventured to Ft. Lauderdale for our wedding anniversary.

We really did not choose our destination this year–it chose us–because about 30 minutes away in Sunrise Roger Waters, formerly of Pink Floyd, was performing “The Wall.”

When Tom found out a month ago, it was all he could do to contain himself.

Floyd has been his favorite group for decades. Not only does he own every album, and know every word to every song dating back to the Syd Barrett days, he has seen them in concert. The last time was at Clemson University in 1994. It was one of the last times the band played together.

A few years later when  we started dating, he told me, “If Floyd ever reunites for a tour, we’re going–no matter where it is or the cost.”

There was slim chance of that happening so I shelved it in the recesses of my mind.

Last year Waters, who wrote almost all of “The Wall” album, was in Tampa but circumstances prevented us from attending and Tom was despondent.

This year the timing was better, and it was our anniversary so we bit the bullet, bought the tickets and set out.

On the five hour ride there, we listened to the album and armed with my smartphone, I read little know factoids about the group and the music as Tom drove.

He was almost giddy, and even admitted as much on Facebook, as we parked and made way to the Bank Atlantic Center.

Once inside we found our seats–beside two young men.

One of them quickly engaged Tom in conversation, asking if this was the first time we’d seen Roger Waters.

Tom then explained it was but he had seen Pink Floyd before, then asked them the same question.

Not only was it their first Roger Waters/Pink Floyd concert, it was their first concert ever. Ever. 

They were 15 and 16 and had become acquainted with the music through a video game. They liked it so much they bought more and soon they were fans.

The three boys, yes, I included my manly-man husband in that reference–were bonded for the night. I watched their reactions throughout the evening as the wall went up brick by brick, as Waters was behind the wall and finally as the wall came crashing down to the crescendo of the audience chants, “Tear down the wall!”

I don’t know who was more excited–the concert novices or the experienced Floyd fan.

Or me.

I was so happy that my husband was happy that I couldn’t help but agree the show was awesome, the weekend terrific and the anniversary ideal.

I also know those two boys will always savor their first concert and when they’re my age, they’ll grin as they remember their first, rocking with the old folks in Sunrise.