I Was at WoodstockbyRogue Writer©
DISCLAIMER: I wasn't really at Woodstock. I hadn't eve been born yet!
NOTE: I wrote this for the 40th anniversary of the concert at Woodstock. And in the spirit of the spontaneity of the thousands who just decided to just go last minute to a concert on a farm in Upstate New York, I wrote this in one afternoon as a challenge to myself. The challenge was to write a quick short piece (if you've read my work before then you know for me short is a challenge), give it one edit pass and send it off in the same day. No proofreading by those I usually use to critique my work, no fifteen edit passes or fretting over a word choice for two days. I did a little bit of research and just started writing. What I'm getting at is: if this sucks, that's why.
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I was at Woodstock. The year was 1969. My name is Cathy McConnell. And that's all I knew.
I was stumbling through crowds of people, a lost seventeen-year-old girl tripping her face off. No idea of the exact date or what day of the week it was. The acid wasn't completely to blame for that; I didn't always pay attention to these things. Neither was it the fault of the acid that I'd lost the people I'd come here with – my brother Nathan, his girlfriend Cheri, and my friend Melanie. That was due to the throngs of crowd as we first walked into the place and somehow got separated. We had driven here from the small town in Massachusetts where we lived, and as we got close to the farm where the concert was taking place traffic suddenly came to a standstill. After a while people were parking their cars on the side of the road and walking, so we decided to do the same. On our pilgrimage we met some cats that gave us some acid and we took it. We'd done it before so we figured this wasn't a big deal.
Except now it was. I don't know if I was getting bum shit back at home, but this stuff was serious. Luckily we'd made it inside the fence before it really hit. For a while all I was seeing was rivers of color flowing before me, and it took me a while to realize it was people and the colors were the colors of their clothing. I was freaking the hell out, and that was the fault of the acid. I heard a loud, booming voice inside my head. It was saying things like, "Could Joe please meet Trish at the bathrooms," and "Don't eat the brown acid, it's a bad trip." By then I was peaking and realized I hadn't paid attention to the color of what I took. Why would I?
I walked through the crowds for a while trying to find the people I'd come with. My parents are going to be pissed, I thought. Earlier in the week when Nathan and I told them we were planning to come here that led to a screaming argument. They said it was bad enough I was becoming a "freaky hippie" who wore strange clothes, listened to crazy music and got caught smoking pot at school, I was now dragging my brother Nathan down with me. Never mind the fact that he was listening to my music because he borrowed my records without asking, never mind the fact he and Cheri came to me asking if I could get them some dope and later some acid, and of course never mind the fact he was older! My brother looked clean cut, hung with the popular crowd and had been on the football team. In a month he was going off to college in Boston and according to my parents I was the one threatening that. My father said, or screamed actually, that if Nathan ended up becoming a college dropout and had to go over to Vietnam, he'd kill me himself. Good ol' dad.
Despite the threat, on Friday morning after Dad left for work and Mom went food shopping, Nathan and I decided to go for it. We left a note on the kitchen table telling them where we were going, picked up Cheri and Melanie and headed to the highway. Figured we'd just catch some hell when we got back on Monday. But now everything had gone to shit. That's when I suddenly realized it was evening and music was coming from the stage. But I had no interest. It had started to rain. I had no interest in that either. Melanie was carrying our sleeping bag. All I had was the T-shirt and long skirt I was wearing, and they were getting soaked. I just sat down and shivered.
When I woke up I was inside. I looked around and saw that it was a tent. I was wearing a T-shirt and jeans that weren't mine and I was alone.
I got up and went outside. I was near the top of the hill facing the stage, and between the stage and me was a sea of thousands of people. I didn't see too many other tents, and most other people just had sleeping bags. There was another tent right next door and sitting in front of it was a guy and a girl. The guy was white, with red shaggy hair and a moustache. The girl was black, with the largest Afro I'd ever seen. She also had a slim, pretty face and deep dark eyes, her body was lithe and she lay back on the ground in a pair of jeans and a bikini top that showed off her belly with a gold chain around it. There weren't many black people in the town where I come from, but that's not why I was staring. Then I realized I was staring and looked away.
The guy noticed me and said, "Hey, how are you feeling?"
"Um...I'm okay," I said, sounding as confused as I felt. "Who are you?"
"I'm Kyle, and this is Coral."
Coral smiled and waved and I waved back. "How did I get here?"
"Breeze brought you last night. You were in pretty bad shape."
"What's a Breeze?"
From behind me came, "That would be me."
I turned and was treated to the sight of a girl around my height, with long dirty blonde hair and a beaming smile. She wasn't thin like Coral; her body was curvy like mine. Breeze wore a white peasant top with a pair of jean cutoff shorts, her feet were bare and she had a braided brown leather anklet on her right ankle. A red paisley scarf was tied around her head. She walked up to me and said, "I went and hung your clothes up to let them dry out a bit. Hope you don't mind."
I smiled. "Not at all, thanks."
"So you met the rest of our merry little band?" she said, indicating Kyle and Coral.
"She met us," Coral said, "but we still haven't met her."
I was confused before I realized I hadn't said my name. "Oh, I'm sorry. I'm Cathy."
Breeze smiled and I melted. "Hey Cathy. I was about to go take a bath. Want to join me?"
"Um, sure," I said. Breeze went into her tent and came out with a towel. She turned to her friends. "We'll be back."
"Don't be too long," Kyle called. "Somebody told me Santana might be on soon."
We walked away from the main concert area and through some woods. Walking barefoot through so much I found myself watching where I stepped. Breeze on the other hand seemed not to care, or her feet were more used to it than mine. Along the way we talked, and I found out Breeze and her friends came all the way from San Francisco. She was nineteen and going to college out there.
We finally got to a river where there were lots of people bathing, and they were all naked. I'd never seen anyone else naked before and I couldn't stop staring, especially at the women.
Breeze looked around. "Let's find someplace a little more private."
We walked down the river a bit until it took a bend that provided us with some privacy. I was relieved, wasn't sure I wanted to be naked in front of so many other people. But in front of Breeze was no problem. She took off her clothes like she had no inhibitions, and in a few moments she was naked. Aside from the anklet, she also wore several necklaces made from beads and stones, some of which hung low between her breasts and one of which came down past her belly button and stopped just below her pubic hair. I noticed Breeze trimmed her pubic hair and it looked neat. It almost made me feel embarrassed when I took off my clothes, revealing my unruly bush that matched the color of my light brown hair. We got into the water and started swimming more than bathing, since we had no soap.
I was enjoying the feel of the water on my naked body, the serenity of the trees and the nature around us, when Breeze asked, "So did you mean what you said last night?"
Smiling, I said, "I don't remember what I said last night."
"About liking girls."
My eyes widened. "What?"
"When I found you, you were going on and on saying, 'I like girls.' In fact you were yelling it at the top of your lungs."
I froze. It was true I liked girls. But nobody knew. Not my parents, not my brother, not even my best friend Melanie.
Breeze swam closer to me. "It's okay," she said. "I like girls too."
She smiled. "That's why I came over to talk to you. But then I realized you were on a bad trip, and when I asked you said you'd lost the people you were with. You kept saying you liked girls and you had to find your brother so your dad didn't kill you." Breeze chuckled. "So I took you back to my tent to get you out of the rain and somewhere safe where you could sleep it off."
All I said to that was, "Oh."
"So I was just wondering if that was the acid talking or if you really do like girls."
I bit my lip. There was an out presented to me here, I could just blame the acid. But looking at Breeze, something told me I shouldn't lie. Now whether or not that was my brain or my libido talking I can't say for sure. Probably both.
Smiling, I said, "I like girls."
Swimming closer, Breeze said, "Do you like me?"
As an answer, I quickly closed the distance between us and kissed her on the lips. It was only a quick peck, but then Breeze kissed me back, and soon our tongues were involved. It was my first kiss ever, and it was nothing like I expected. I'd seen others kiss, girls and boys I went to school with, but I never imagined it felt like that.
Suddenly I felt Breeze's hands on my sides, her fingers running up and down my hips. I did the same to her, and then she pulled me into a hug. We continued kissing for a while, until Breeze pulled back and we moved into a more shallow area where we were up to our hips in the water. Then Breeze started kissing my neck, moving down slowly until she got to my left breast. She kissed all around it and then started licking my nipple. My head went back and I moaned. She started sucking my nipple, lightly at first until she began to suck more of the breast around it into her mouth. As we stood there, the feeling of the water as it slid between my legs and tickled my pussy lips added to the incredible new sensation I was feeling. Many a time I'd lay in bed at home and played with my breasts, but having someone else touching them, and even better licking and sucking them, was the most far out sensation I'd ever felt.
I put my hand to the back of her neck and caressed her hair. She moved to my other breast and gave that one the same treatment. Finally she came face to face with me and we kissed again for a while, until I started kissing down Breeze's neck and made my way to her treasures. I tried to repeat what she had done to me, kissing the globe all over before licking and sucking at the nipple. I heard Breeze moan and that gave me a charge of excitement. The taste of her skin and the smell of my saliva became intoxicating. And the sounds of nature around us and the feel of the open air on my body made it just a little weird.
Suddenly Breeze grabbed both sides of my head and pulled me up. "I need you now!"
I started to say, "But I you have me!" as she took me by the hand and led me quickly to shore. We came to a tree and Breeze turned and sat down at the base of it. She positioned me so I was lying on my stomach on the grass, and she opened her legs and revealed her pussy to me. I looked at her pink privates and brought my face close, smelling her scent. Using one hand to move some of her necklace out of the way, I brought the other between her legs and moved a finger up and down her slit. Breeze moaned and so I kept doing it. She looked down at me and said, "Lick me, please."
I was a little hesitant at first, but slowly I stuck out my tongue and gave a lick. Her taste was tart, and I licked again. She let out a loud gasp. So I kept doing it until I had a rhythm going. I worked all around her folds, licking up and down and left and right and even diagonal. Once I went to the top and hit her clit she went wild. Her hand went to the back of my head and she pulled me into it, so I licked and sucked until she started shaking and yelling and calling out my name. It was both strange and exciting to hear my name called out in the midst of sexual passion, and a hell of an improvement over the anger and distain it usually got treated with at home and at school.
"That was so fucking good," Breeze said, sounding all kinds of exhausted. I got up on my knees in front of her, and she put her hands on either side of my face and drew me in for a kiss. I could still taste her pussy in my mouth, and it occurred to me that she must taste it too as we kissed.
We switched positions and when her tongue first touched my pussy it was like an electric current zapped my system. She was incredible. Her tongue danced on my vaginal lips as my vocal lips parted and let out a high-pitched squeal. And I thought getting high felt good! Breeze pushed her tongue into my slit and moved it in and out like I had done with my finger when I masturbated. My head snapped back and I moaned. I looked at the river and the trees and saw a bird fly by. Then I caught movement out of the corner of my eye. A frog sat on a rock a few feet away, staring at us. I smiled, wondering what was going through his little head concerning the spectacle before him. Either he was thinking, "What the fuck are these two doing?" or maybe, "I gotta find me a lady toad!"
Breeze's tongue moved up to my clit and she played with it, batting it back and forth and then licking up and down in fast motions. She'd suck on it and my moans turned to yells. I felt the orgasm building in my system, slowly creeping up as the muscles in my stomach and legs jerked and my toes curled. My back arched, my head fell back and I could see the branches above blowing in the breeze as I took in a deep breath, letting it out as a loud cry as I experienced my first non self-administered orgasm.
I closed my eyes and slumped back against the tree. Arms slid around me, and when I opened my eyes Breeze way lying next to me, cuddling up against my body. "Was that your first time?" she asked.
I smiled. "Yeah. Thanks."
"Groovy," she said.
We got dressed and grabbed my clothes, which were not dry but dryer, before we got back to the tents. Breeze said it was originally supposed to be four of them coming out for the concert, but her girlfriend had broken up with her a few days earlier and Breeze figured it was her loss. I realized her loss was truly my gain.
When we got back the music had started and Kyle and Coral had grabbed some food for all of us because the tents where they served it kept running out. We ate and then I went into the tent to change back into my skirt and T-shirt. When I got back out Breeze, Kyle and Coral were smoking a bowl and they asked if I wanted some. So I sat down and got high. I loved being high. Not just because it was such a great feeling, but because that was when I felt most at peace, most confident, and most in touch with the world around me. Usually I felt crazy, with the world around me and the people always trying to push me around, like my parents, my teachers, and every other adult I knew. But when I was high none of that mattered. I was able to think clear. And what I realized once I felt high was that I needed to find the people I'd come there with.
I mentioned this to the people I was currently with, and Breeze told the others she was going to come help me. Before we left she went into the tent and came out with something in her hand. "Here," she said. "This is for you."
It was a silver jingle bell anklet. I smiled and said, "I can't take this. It's yours."
"Yes you can. I made it."
I looked at the piece, and it looked like professional ones I'd seen in stores. "Seriously?"
She nodded shyly. "I make all the jewelry I wear."
"This is really nice work." I leaned down and put it around my right ankle. We walked barefoot and every time I took a step my anklet made a sound. Breeze joked that this way no one would ever loose me again.
We got to the section of tents where the Hog Farmers, a group from a commune in New Mexico, had set up to distribute food and help people through bad acid trips. I spoke to some cat who said he could arrange an announcement from the stage to have them meet me somewhere specific, like near the toilets or one of the tents. But I didn't want to spend the whole concert waiting somewhere, and I certainly didn't want Breeze to waste her experience there because she felt like she had to help me. So Breeze suggested I say a specific time as well, that way we could enjoy the concert and just try to find him between acts. I knew my brother wanted to see Santana, so I told the guy to have them announce that I'd meet him by the Hog Farmer's place after Santana.
We went back and hung out with Kyle and Coral for a while. I found out they'd been a couple for a year and went to school with Breeze. They all told me about San Francisco and it sounded like an amazing place. Cool people, cool places to hang out, cool things to do. Sit-ins, love-ins, peace rallies, everything I'd wanted take part in. It was the epicenter of the counter culture movement, the exact opposite of the town I was living in. I asked about what I'd heard on the news about the hippie movement having died there, but they said it was only in '67 when too many people came. Now it was back to equilibrium and things were good. They told me I should come out to visit them sometime, and I said I'd love to. I spent the next few minutes dreaming about going out there to visit, or maybe even live there someday.
Just then we heard the announcement for Nathan or Cheri or Melanie to meet Cathy by the Hog Farmer's tent after Santana performed. We watched Santana and he was amazing. But I also kept looking around for my brother or Cheri or Melanie in the faces around us, and also anyone who passed by. But it was no luck. When Santana finished Breeze came with me to the meet point. A while went by and there was nothing, no Nathan or Cheri or Melanie.
Finally Breeze came up with the idea to go in the tent and ask if any of them had come in sick. She figured if the acid did me wrong so maybe it was bad for them as well. I was afraid of finding out that was true, afraid that something worse had happened to them. We went and asked, and found out they had been in there. Apparently Cheri had been flipping out and they ended up taking her to a hospital.
I was freaked at this point, and totally unsure of what to do. But deep down I knew what I had to do. Call home. There were phones available, but there were also lines to get to them. Again, Breeze was great and said she'd wait with me.
When I finally got to a phone I dialed home and was totally surprised Nathan answered.
"You're home? I've been trying to find you!"
"Melanie and I drove back last night."
"That acid happened. We all felt like crap, but Cheri started freaking and they took her to the hospital."
"I heard. How is she?"
"She's okay now. It's you and me we should be worried about."
I heard my father's voice yelling in the background. There was a rustling of the phone and then his voice saying, "Catherine, you are in serious trouble little lady. You're going to walk to someplace where I can pick you up! Now a few miles from there..."
He started going on about a place he found on the map away from all the roadblock of the show. I sighed. This whole trip was blown and I was in deep shit. More than likely I was going to spend my entire senior year of high school grounded. And I couldn't imagine my parents letting me go away to college after this, they would make me go somewhere local so they could keep an eye on me. They were big on control, and they hated that I was getting more and more out of their control. But now I'd screwed up big, which gave them the excuse to come down hard. My life was over until I was twenty-two, and going to San Francisco was going to be a pipe dream until then.