Back to Woodstockbyjack_straw©
Rachel Hardy's eyes were misty, and she had a faraway look on her face as she gazed over the grassy meadow where it all happened so many years ago.
In her mind's eye she could picture the meadow as it had looked back then, the sea of humanity covering the area as far as one could see, the high stage at the far end at the bottom of the hill, the many tents that had been set up to help handle the throngs that had flocked to the area.
She looked over at the young man standing next to her, looking over the area in awe. Rachel pointed in one direction.
"Over there was where we set up the medical tent," she said. "I'd been a candy striper in high school, and they knew I had a little bit of a medical background. You know, it's a miracle we only lost two people that weekend. Half-a-million people, and only two fatalities, and one of those probably couldn't have been helped."
"What happened?" Craig Burford said.
"I think it was a burst appendix," Rachel said. "I remember, I helped deliver three babies."
"Wow," Craig said. "Well, Gram, did you get to see any of the acts?"
"Oh, I made it a point to see the Dead, although they really sucked that night," Rachel said with a laugh. "They were really fucked up, plus it was threatening to blow up a storm. The wind was blowing hard, and Phil Lesh told me a couple of weeks later when I ran into him that they thought the whole stage was about to collapse."
"Anybody else that you remember?" Craig asked. He was enthralled by the stories his grandmother was sharing, and utterly captivated by being this close to the object of his long-held desire.
"Oh, the Who," Rachel said. "Definitely the Who. I managed to get fairly close to the stage for their show, and it was the highlight of the weekend, especially when Pete Townsend threw that asshole Abbie Hoffman off the stage. That was priceless. The jerk jumped on stage and started spewing this revolutionary bullshit, and Pete told him to, 'get off my fucking stage,' And when Hoffman refused, Pete cold-cocked him."
"What about Hendrix?" Craig said.
"Missed him," Rachel said. "By the time he came on, I was burned out, tripped out and exhausted. It was about 9 o'clock in the morning on Monday, and I was already five miles back down the road, walking."
"Best time... of my life," Rachel said, and she couldn't stop the tears from the memories that flooded her mind.
Instinctively, Craig pulled Rachel into a hug, and he felt a chill race up his body as he felt his grandmother's trim body against his. Rachel leaned into her handsome young grandson, and not for the first time, felt the forbidden feelings rush through her.
Rachel was giving her grandson a guided tour down memory lane, a three-week cross-country trip for his high school graduation. He had grown up on her stories of Haight-Ashbury, of Greenwich Village and of Woodstock, and they utterly fascinated him.
They had spent several days in New York and were spending this day visiting the site where the Woodstock Festival had been held, then they were headed off to Niagara Falls and points west.
When she had composed herself somewhat, Rachel took Craig's hand and led him down the hill, where 400,000 young people had turned the area into a muddy mess.
"We thought we were going to change the world," Rachel said. "But, really, we just found a different way to fuck it up. We were so fired up when we left here, then it all fell apart, almost overnight. Three-and-a-half months was all it took to go from peace, love and happiness to sympathy for the devil, Hell's Angels with pool cues and some poor bastard getting stabbed to death right in front of Mick Jagger."
Rachel idly fingered the almost invisible scar on her forehead, the result of being accidentally hit by a cue stick during the melee at Altamont.
"You know, the thing is that Rock Scully thought Woodstock and Altamont were just the flip sides of the same coin," Rachel said a trifle bitterly, after a period of reflection. "But I don't recall seeing him out here working the kitchen to feed hungry kids or helping the doctors take care of the overdoses. He was too busy sitting backstage smoking pot with Jerry Garcia."
"Well, Gram, what else was he going to do?" Craig said. "He was their manager, for crying out loud."
"Yeah, I guess so," Rachel said, flashing her grandson her thousand-watt smile. "But, dammit, for one time in our lives, we were a community, we all came together without thinking about anything but helping people who needed it. That's why you and I are here. Dammit, this meant something to me!"
Craig had to laugh, in spite of himself. He loved his grandmother more than anyone in the world, especially when she got like this, when her tattered liberalism showed a brief flicker of life.
Rachel had been a true child of the Sixties. She'd been born in 1947 in San Francisco, and had grown up in the suburbs south of the city. Even before she graduated from high school in 1965, she'd begun to sample some of the underground life that was sprouting all through the Bay Area, and when she was 18, she moved into the city.
Her stated motive was to attend San Francisco State and go to nursing school, but that quickly fell by the wayside as she immersed herself in the counterculture of the time. For the next 4½ years, she lived the hippie life, criss-crossing the country in search of high times, and not even having a baby in early 1967 slowed her down.
Her daughter Linda had been dragged from pillar to post for most of the first three years of her life, alternating between living with Rachel and Rachel's parents, and that had always colored their relationship.
Altamont, in December of 1969, was the ill-fated "festival" on the East Bay that was supposed to feature the Jefferson Airplane, the Grateful Dead and the Rolling Stones. It had been an unmitigated disaster, and it had left Rachel with blood dripping from the gash in her forehead and her illusions shattered.
After the first of the year, she decided it was time to grow up a little bit. She took Linda in for good, got a job as an ER tech for one of the city's hospitals while she went to nursing school – this time seriously – and set about making a life for herself that didn't involve sex, drugs and rock-and-roll.
Yet, she didn't completely cut her ties with the old days, and in 1974, she finally married an old friend from the Haight named Jack Hardy. She wasn't sure if she ever really loved Jack, but he offered companionship, great sex and a link to her youth. So she had made a life with him for the next 20 years.
The problem with Jack was that he still bought into the old counterculture attitudes of nonconformity. He absolutely refused to get a job, "working for the Man," as he put it, and tried to make a living making pottery and selling a little weed on the side.
Throughout their 20-year marriage, Jack had been in and out of jail on minor drug charges, and in and out of drug rehab.
Naturally, Linda was never taken with him, and when she turned 18, she moved out, to Arizona, and was married within a year. In 1986, she had her only child, Craig.
In 1994, Jack's life of relentless self-abuse caught up with him, when he had a sudden heart attack and died. About the same time, Linda's marriage broke up, so Rachel had moved to Arizona to get away from her memories and to help Linda with Craig.
It was during the four years that Rachel stayed with Linda and Craig that the tight bond between grandmother and grandson had been formed. Rachel taught Craig how to play guitar and had filled his fertile young mind with the music and ideals she'd had in her youth, all to the chagrin of Linda, who hated everything associated with that period.
When Craig was 12, Linda remarried and Rachel moved out, but she took one look at the relationship between Linda, her new husband and Craig, and decided to stay in Arizona, close at hand. She understood that Craig was going to need a refuge, and she had provided one.
She loved her sensitive, intelligent grandson in a way she never had quite loved her daughter. But there was something else under the surface that drove the relationship between Rachel and Craig. Lust.
Rachel was the first woman Craig developed a hard-on for after reaching puberty, and he had never wavered in his desire, even as he developed into a striking young man who was a big hit with the girls in his high school.
Ordinarily, a teenager lusting after his grandmother might be considered a little sick, except that Rachel at 58 was better looking and sexier than most women half her age.
She was fairly tall, about 5-foot-10, and slender. She'd kept herself in good shape and had managed to retain most of her ivory complexion. She had long tapered legs, a firm ass and a pair of 36As that still sat up on her chest in open defiance of age and gravity.
Her only concessions to her age were the salt and pepper hair that she wore stylishly short, a few wrinkles right at the corners of her eyes and the rimless glasses she was forced to wear. Otherwise, she was still the raving beauty she'd been 40 years ago, with a dazzling smile and big, gorgeous brown eyes.
And Rachel often thought about how handsome and how sexy her grandson was. There was no shortage of men wanted to date Rachel, but none of them held the least interest for her.
She had always believed that the quality of sex was more important than the quantity, and she preferred celibacy to sex just for the sake of getting physical release. She had her trusty vibrators and a couple of dildoes that gave her all the fulfillment she needed. Most of the time.
But as Craig had matured, she had found herself looking at him in an entirely un-grandmotherly way. He had grown into a strapping young man, about 6-foot-1 and a trim 185 pounds. He was handsome in a rugged sort of way, with bright eyes and thick curly hair that he wore shoulder-length.
Craig's only real physical defect was his nose. An avid runner and a talented soccer player, he'd had a collision with another player during a match that left him with a broken nose. As far as Rachel was concerned, it just made him look that much sexier.
For a long time, she had fought the perverted desires that had bubbled under the surface, but she wasn't sure she could fight them off much longer, or whether she even wanted to.
She had always sensed that Craig felt the same way about her that she did about him, and she had planned this trip as a reward for his outstanding academic achievement in high school. If there was something there, it would happen; if not, they would still have a wonderful time together.
Craig was headed to Arizona State in a few weeks, but he wanted to see the country before he started college. Linda had never had much wanderlust, and their vacations had been limited to the Grand Canyon and the beach at San Diego.
Rachel and Craig had flown from Phoenix to New York and had spent some time visiting some of Rachel's old haunts and a few old friends. During the three nights they'd spent at her friend's midtown apartment, they really hadn't had much opportunity to be alone together, but now they were off on their own.
They had rented a car, and bright and early that morning, they had headed up the Thruway, on their way back to Woodstock. They had no definite plans, no particular place in mind to stay that night. They were just going to enjoy the day on the grounds, then go as far as they could before stopping for the night.
They had parked on the grounds at Yasgur's Farm, a mile or so from the original site, where parking is not allowed. They had visited and swapped stories with the good folks who run the farm, keeping the spark of the Woodstock spirit alive, then they had hiked to the site itself, where a monument commemorates the event.
During daylight hours, visitors can walk the grounds where the performances took place, but it is closed at dusk and camping isn't allowed. Rachel and Craig wandered through the area, then walked back across the road toward the large pond that sits just north of the site.
Rachel had a devilish look on her face as they walked around the edge of the pond, until they came to a somewhat secluded spot.
"This was the infamous bathing pond," Rachel said with a grin. "I believe there were a few babies made on this site."
"Oh?" Craig said, his interest piqued.
"If you wanted to clean up in any way, this was the best place to do it," Rachel said as she sat down on the grass at water's edge and began to pull off her boots and socks. "I don't know about you, but I'm hot and I could use some refreshment."
With that, she peeled off her shorts, pulled her T-shirt over her head and waded into the cool water in just her panties and bra. When she was about waist-deep, she dove under the surface, then emerged with water streaming from her face and chest.
"Come on in, the water's wonderful!" Rachel yelled to Craig.
Craig was goggle-eyed at seeing his sexy grandmother in such a state of undress, but he knew an opportunity when he saw one, so he slid his sandals off, dropped his shorts and T-shirt and waded in with just his boxer shorts on.
His cock was tingling and swelling as he dove into the water and swam out to where Rachel was treading water.
"Wow, Gram, this is nice," Craig said.
Rachel was in a playful mood, and she decided to push things to see where they went.
"What's nice?" she said. "The cool water or the fact that you're seeing me in my underwear?"
"Both," Craig said.
"Oh, so you've been checking out my body, have you?" Rachel said as she latched onto Craig's strong shoulders.
"You've got a beautiful body, Gram," Craig said, his cock starting to stiffen, even in the cool water. "I've always thought you were the sexiest woman around."
They stared in each other's eyes in that moment, and that's when they both knew what was coming. But Rachel knew this wasn't the time or place, so she broke away from Craig and swam toward land.
Craig stifled a groan of arousal as he watched Rachel's sleek wet body emerge from the pond. His cock was a raging beast as she turned and fixed him with a disconcerting gaze.
He could see clearly the dark spots through her wet, lacy bra where her brown nipples were visible, and the dark patch between her legs, which was clearly defined through her satiny bikini panties, panties that couldn't quite contain all of her thick, luxuriant bush.
Rachel sat back on the grass and watched Craig climb out of the water, and her gaze was fixed on the big fat cock that his boxers weren't nearly able to hide. She felt a hot flash race through her body as she admired his youthful physique, and at the knowledge that she had aroused him.
Craig sat down next to his grandmother and they lay back on the grass, letting the sun dry their bodies and their underwear. They were both lost in thought, until Craig finally worked up the nerve to ask a question he'd puzzled over for a long time.
"Gram?" he asked softly. "Can I ask you a personal question?"
"Sure, honey, ask me anything you want," Rachel said, as Craig's voice broke the reverie she'd been lost in.
"How come you never remarried after Mr. Jack died?" Craig said. "I mean, I would think a beautiful, sexy woman like you would have men beating down your door."
"Oh, there are plenty of codgers who've been sniffing around," Rachel said. "You know, I have dated a few, but not a single one has ever done anything for me. I have a happy, fulfilling life with my family, my friends and my job, and I don't need a man around just for the sake of companionship. And as for sex, I'm not going to fuck someone just for the sake of having sex. Besides, there are too many risks associated with casual sex. I'd rather wait for a man I have real feelings for, someone I know is safe and who will take me to where I want to go sexually."
Rachel looked right into her grandson's eyes as she said that, and Craig felt a tingle slither up his spine from the casual way she'd talked about fucking someone, and at the realization that she may have been referring to him as the man she was waiting on.
"So you haven't had a man since...," Craig said.
"Not since the night before Jack died," Rachel whispered. "For all of his faults, and there were plenty, he was such a good lover that I've just never found anyone who I thought could replace him. Or at least..."
Rachel stopped before she could say what she'd wanted to say, but they both caught the implication. For a long second, they stared at each other again, and they each looked as if they wanted to kiss. But they were still hesitant, still a little afraid to cross the line.
"We'd better get dressed and get on up the road," Rachel said, finally breaking the spell. "I've about had all the nostalgia I can handle for one day."
They dressed in silence, and hiked back to the Farm, greeting some other visitors along the way. Before they left Yasgur's Farm, Rachel wrote a check for $100 and handed it to the owner.
"Thanks for a wonderful day," she said. "It's not much, but I hope it'll do a little bit to help keep the faith."
"Hey now, just keep teaching the young people what it was all about," the man said, nodding in Craig's direction. "You know, just pass it on."
Rachel and Craig were silent, lost in their thoughts as Rachel drove the rental car over the meandering highways leading away from Woodstock.
In some ways, seeing the site had a little anticlimactic for Rachel. It was just another open field in another rural locale, and the controversies surrounding the area depressed her. This wasn't the Woodstock spirit she'd felt back in '69.
But Craig had definitely picked up the underlying vibes of the place that no amount of legal rancor could ruin. He had basked in the aura of being in the place he'd heard so much about, where the bands he idolized had bravely performed under often-stressful conditions.
Craig had always had a passion for the music and the trappings of the late Sixties. Most of the kids in his class preferred the hard-driving metal of the modern era, and there was some of that music that Craig found tolerable.
But he much preferred the groups he'd grown up listening to at Rachel's place: the Dead, Quicksilver, the Airplane, Neil Young, the Doors and, above all others, Jimi Hendrix. To go back with his beloved grandmother, to walk the fields she'd tripped through 36 years ago had been a dream come true.
And what had really made the day for both of them was the surreptitious swim and the way their mutual lust had bubbled to the surface. They knew now that it was only a matter of time; they just didn't know how exactly it was going to happen.
It was around 8 o'clock and the sun was setting in the west when they reached Syracuse. They debated pushing on a little further, but they were tired – and they were keyed up from the events of the day and the promise of the night.
The found a Holiday Inn on the west side of the city, and when Rachel went in to inquire about a room, she was told the only rooms they had left were single-bed. The manager working the desk hastened to say that they were king-size beds, but Rachel barely heard. A slow smile crept across her face as she envisioned the possibilities.
After bringing in their overnight bags, Rachel insisted that she needed a shower before dinner. Craig could feel the tingling in his groin as he thought about Rachel naked in the shower, and he considered simply taking the bull by the horns and taking a shower with her.
Instead, he sat in a chair and idly picked at his guitar while listening to the shower run. Rachel had a towel wrapped around her chest when she emerged briefly from the shower. After throwing on some panties and a bra, she gave the bathroom over to Craig for him to shower, and this time it was Rachel who had lustful thoughts about her naked grandson.