Tag Archives: Detroit Michigan

Writers Quote Wednesday Memories


 In the clouded mind

We seek to choose memories

Perhaps they choose us

(c) 2016 Annette Rochelle Aben 

 Okay, those who know me, know that music has always played a HUGE part of my life. My parents were rabid record collectors and there was always a stereo in our home.  Even if we didn’t have a vehicle, we had music. I can even recall the very first 45 rpm vinyl record I ever purchased with my allowance. “We Ain’t Got Nothing Yet” by The Blues Magoos!

 Ah yes, I remember it well.

 Okay, I am from Detroit, Michigan and there are several amazing venues for music here in the “D”. My folks always took us to concerts. As a family, we would attend the Detroit Symphony, have summer picnics in the park whilst being serenaded by The Detroit Concert Band and enjoy various chamber orchestras at The Detroit Institute of Arts on magical Sunday mornings.  We’d even catch the free musical acts, such as Count Basie when they played the Michigan State Fair. Most enjoyable!

 Ah, yes, I remember them well.

 Okay, so as I grew up, the arenas for music shifted from the free, family-friendly fare to the stand-in-line to plunk down your hard-earned money to snap up tickets to see everyone from Neil Diamond to Elton John and Wayne Newton to Billy Joel. A few of the others included,  Heart when they first began touring as well as that up and coming duo, Hall & Oates. Naturally, Detroit rock and roll was well appreciated, for whenever Bob Seger or Alice Cooper were in town, I was there!

 Ah, yes, I remember them well.

 Or do I?

 Okay, so I am having a chat with my dear cousin Peg one evening and we were playing “remember when” about who we saw, where we saw and when we saw” when she dropped a bombshell. “Remember when we saw Queen?” 


 Okay, so we went rounds on this, I mean rounds.  “Annie.” She calls me Annie. “Annie, I saw them and you were there with me, so I believe that we did, in fact, see Queen in concert.” 

 Crickets on drugs.

 Okay, the next day I am relating the obligatory love and kisses from cousins to cousins to my sister when I chose to share this ridiculous conversation about seeing Queen with Peg. To which my darling little sister, Lorraine, replies, “Yeah, I was there with you two. Billy Squire played first. Don’t you remember when that girl jumped up on stage and chased him around until security dragged her off?

 Don’t crickets have predators…

 Okay, she continues by telling me we were sitting w-a-y up in the nose bleed section, off to the left a bit. All at once, I had this thought. “Were we at the Joe?” The Joe Louis Arena in downtown Detroit was what I meant.  And I got this vision of people 3 rows behind us who stood up and were able to touch the metal rafters at the very top. Must have been, because she smiled.

 Ah, yes I remembered THAT!

 Okay, as I was not the world’s most ardent Queen fan. However I was a most obnoxious Billy Squire fan.  In fact,  probably drove everyone around me nuts singing along with him, at the top of my lungs at the top of the Joe. So why was I not able to remember all this?  Probably because I was quite the alcoholic who was cross addicted to drugs as well.  And a concert (where I didn’t have to drive) meant getting w-a-s-t-e-d.  Naturally my sister confirmed that I was completely trashed, thank goodness Peg was driving that night.

 Okay, so I did an internet search and found that yes indeedy, Queen and Billy Squire were at The Joe Louis Arena, in Detroit, Michigan on August 6, 1982. Apparently, so was I.

 The crickets have been replaced by the rumble of thunder outside my home right now.  We are about to have a storm. I have yet to catch up with Peg to let her know that while I still do NOT remember the actual concert, I do have a couple of random memories about that night. Once I pondered it, I could see Billy being chased by some love stuck fan while he kept right on singing, dashing about the stage like an athlete.

 Ah yes, I remember that well.

 Okay, to bring this even more into the present moment.  Recently, I had a casual conversation with a friend I have only known about 3 years, who happens to be the ultimate Queen fan. We were talking about her birthday, which just passed. She was waxing nostalgic about the best present she ever got, when her boyfriend took her to see Queen when Adam Lambert was touring with them. She remarked that while he was good, nothing compared from that night back in the 80’s when she saw Freddie Mercury and Queen at Joe Louis.

 Since I didn’t know her then, should I be able to remember that?  

 Oh well…

They said it was so

Memory, don’t fail me now

Cue the crickets please

(c) Annette Rochelle Aben 2016

 Cue, Maurice Chevalier, please…  

#WQWWC – Writers Quote Wednesday Writing Challenge – Memories

Hugh’s Weekly Photo Challenge Week 22 Group

This goes back a ways… Probably 37-38 years…  I was working for John V. Carr & Son, Custom House Broker at the border of Detroit, Michigan and Windsor, Ontario, Canada. It was our job to process the paperwork for freight that was entering or exiting the country.  As the truck drivers were not expected to have the, sometimes, thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars of DUTY required for importation of the goods they brought in their trucks, our firm would promise to cover it and the shippers or consignees would pay us back, plus our fees.   LOVED that job and LOVED my co-workers. This is part of the day shift (we were a 24/7 operation).

I am the redhead, down front, next to our boss, Dianne.  It was HER birthday, hence the bottle of booze in Mike’s hand.  It’s funny, because all three of the women (me, Dianne and Melanie) actually lived within a mile of each other but didn’t know each other until we started working there. Anyway, here is our motley crew for the GROUP PHOTO CHALLENGE!

yummy 004


Christmas Trees Around the World

Thank you to Colleen for the invite to participate in this photo gallery.

holidaze 015My sister, Lorraine, is the tree decorator in this house. She has such a grand time so my brother, Mitch and I simply stay out of her way, lest we end up decorated ourselves.

ChristmasCollageLorraine not only decorates the tree, she decorates everything (pretty much) in the room. Yes, those are Santa and elf hats on skulls…  Dinosaur? But of course!


We are located in  Westland which is in the great State of Michigan, smack dab in between Detroit Metro Airport, Ann Arbor, Detroit and Dearborn (roughly 25 minutes from any one those destinations for those who are Michigan savvy).

Many of the decorations have been in our family for decades and believe it or not, she adds new things every year…  No wonder she loves decorating even the outside trees as well as creating trees out of practically ANYTHING in the house!




#Read about Guest #Author Annette Rochelle Aben

I am honored to be the Guest Author as well as to introduce anyone who has NOT connected with Christopher Graham a.k.a. The Story Reading Ape to a most remarkable blog!  Thank you Good Sir Ape for this kindness, I shall not soon forget you Chris. ❤

#Read about Guest #Author Annette Rochelle Aben.