At one point I had the ultimate experience. I could just see it all and was like woah.”
That is what he said.
He said it to two other old guys who walked up to him hoping to see what he was seeing.
Through a small break in the fencing at the end of the line of the portajohns that made up the back perimeter of the Prospect Park Bandshell the long-haired man stared into his binoculars and watched Robert Plant. He was the happiest man in the Park.
I noticed him halfway through the concert. We too were on the outside looking in, enjoying the show for free. However we were under a tree with pastel party cups filled with Rolling Rock and an array of fine meats and cheeses. We were accompanied by a Beagle puppy.
Not my man.
He had an old Led Zeppelin T-shirt on, well-worn from years of following his childhood heroes, and a long mane of gray, white and formerly brown hair. I would guess he had seen Led Zeppelin many times before. He had experience. He brought nothing with him that would weigh him down. He was armed with only binoculars. There is a chance he got onto public transportation with them around his neck both before and after the show.
I think I saw the point of the evening that he referred to as the “ultimate.” It may have been right after I first noticed him. He had made connection, he found his sweet spot. I saw him adjusting the focus on his trusty binoculars. I saw him bend his knees and find the perfect position.
Than he froze.
He was transfixed. For that moment his dream of being front row for a Led Zeppelin show was a reality. It was right there before his eyes. It was as close as he would ever get. While at first I had worried about the man wondering if he was staring into a crack in the portajohns I soon realized he was not a pervert, he was a Led Zeppelin fan, and he was enjoying the night more than everyone else in the park that night could ever understand.