Sam Love and I rented a camper van and decided it would be our home for the next three weeks, as we made our way loop-dee-loop around the south island of New Zealand. A few hours in, we realized that there aren't that many people in New Zealand (but tons of sheep!) and townships are quite spread out, resulting in very few radio stations.
This was a problem. We planned on driving, like hundreds of miles. But with no music? No way. No how! As we pulled into Queenstown, we had a mission. A thrift store needed to be found – CDs needed to be purchased. And there it was, the Salvation Army (or Sallie's as they like to call it there). They did have CDs … and guess what? They were ALL Willie Nelson. Every-single-one. So we got one titled “Willie Stripped” which includes a CD booklet with photos of Willie sitting naked in the bath. Bonus! So now, when I think of New Zealand, I think of Willie Nelson, Sam Love and me belting out “Bring Me Sunshine” as we chugged in our little van through the mind blowing landscape of the Fiordland National Park.
So seeing Willie last night, live at the Fillmore, was like a triple/quadruple bonus. This man is an icon, who stands for peace, love and tons of free flowing whiskey. And even though he is such an American symbol, Willie Nelson will forever remind me of that New Zealand roadtrip.