Days In The Life: Apr. 26-29

Days In The Life: Apr. 26-29

Days In The Life - a first hand documentation of the life for a globe-trotting DJ written by the man himself, Josh Wink.

 

Thursday April 26, 2012: Mexico City

We all have hard days of travel. I don’t want to come off as ‘woe me’ nobody gets it. But, some days are easier than others. And I had one of the harder days on Thursday. Simply put, traveling is amazing when all works out. I mean, planes, trains, automobiles get me to travel the world and do what I love to do.

I had a gig in Mexico city, and I wanted to be responsible and get there earlier, rather than getting the last flight out and dealing with no more flights if problems arise. On paper the flight from Philadelphia to Charlotte and then to Mexico city was simple. Reality sets in when I get to the airport at 515AM and the security lines are huge and stressed with tired travelers starting their day without coffee or the usual sleep regime.

                        

(Typical USAIR madness in Philly. But, didn't think of this at 5:15AM)

 

Boarded plane with a slight delay, get onto tarmac and the captain announces a delay that we’ll be waiting for 40 minutes on the runway. I can still make my connection flight I say to myself. Then comes the well, we have to go back to the gate as there is a mechanical problem. Now, when it comes to mechanical issues, yes it’s frustrating to be a victim of the circumstances- But, it’s even better to immediately hear the fellow passengers groan, moan, and mumble their anger and annoyance after the announcement has been made. But, hey, when it comes to a plane and safety, bring me back to the gate, I’d rather have this then have an emergency landing at 32,000 feet and deal with the emotional baggage after being scared shitless.

Well, long story short. I was going to miss my connection flight. So, I had to step up and make decisions to get off the plane and rebook on the ground or be stuck and deal with it all in Charlotte. I made a decision, the best one on 3 hours sleep and 515 Airport brain. But, in the end, it took me 20 hrs to get to Mexico City, all from wanting to be responsible and leave Philly early to avoid arriving late.  Well, I get into Mexico City via Phoenix at 12:10AM. Clear immigration, look for the promoter, who I can’t find, so we do the phone dance “Where are you”, “Oh I’m at this door”, “Oh I’m outside”, which finally leads to a success.

I’m hungry, grumpy, tired and frustrated, but feel good knowing I did everything I could to get to here.  I check into the hotel at 1:10. The promoter says I can order room service and go to the club after.

Ordered a salad, which I didn’t think about it being washed in contaminated water, after it was half in my stomach. Last time I was in Mexico City was for the Unit Festival in 2001, and I got Montezuma’s revenge BAD! So, I’m always cautious now in Mexico when it comes to the water, as I don’t like to have GI distress on the ground, or in the air in the lavish Airplane bathroom.

                      

(Best way to brush teeth in Mexico City! Bottled water.)

 

I was happy to be staying at really nice design savy hotel in the city close to the club.

I realized that I wouldn’t be there long, but it’s hotels are my home away from home and have become an oasis for the weary traveler. But, there’s no worse feeling than checking in at 1:10AM, exhausted to the core, flop on the fluffy duvet and pillow and now I have to leave in 5 minutes to perform.

So, gig was lots of fun. Small underground venue called Rioma, and I was the guinea pig as the club and promoter are starting their new night on a Thursday for the 1st time. All in attendance were happy, smiling, jacking, yelling fans, and it made me very happy!

                                       

(Makes it all worth it!)

A bit of their local tequila and an indigo beer with some waters and cheering fans- My travel miseries were quickly forgotten.

 

                           

(Bottled Water! Er...)

After turning down several invitations to after-party at clubs, bars and homes along with the “I know the best place to get tacos now” Cookie, the promoter, whisked me back to the hotel in the seldom desolat and quiet streets. This time he tempted me for a late night/ early mourning taco at ‘the best place to get tacos at this hour”. I uttered a simple “dude”, and my point was made clear, bridging the Spanish/English language gap.

We decided on a time for pick up, after he scared me by mentioning the possible transit strike in order to cripple the city. A 10:45AM departure from the hotel for a 1:20PM flight to the States was agreed apon.

Traffic is bad in Mexico city… I mean, bad and I don’t want to deal with more travel complications.

In bed by 6:50AM after pre-packing, a usual ritual of mine. No matter how tired I am, I always pack before I go to sleep. It’s easier to deal with a shower and putting toiletetries away with 2-3 hrs sleep than rushing around with a foggy mind set.

I plunge into bed, mindful that the last time I was in a bed was 23hrs ago, when my journey began, and how fortunate I am now to be safe and in a nice hotel room… For only 3 1/2 hours! Urrrgh!                                                      

 

                         

(The Cool Condesa DF hotel in Mexico City. Can you tell the room number?)

 

Friday April 27, 2012: Tampa, FL, USA

It’s a weird thing how I always awake shortly before my alarm goes off. The power of the biological clock. Doesn’t matter how much sleep I get, when I set my alarm on the road, I get up before the alarm sounds. Anxiety that I slept through the alarm or that I didn’t set it right may be the culprit, but either ways its interesting.

So, packed, all I needed to do was shower, brush teeth and head downstairs.

In the lobby after check out 5 minutes before Cookie and I agreed on meeting.

Well, a half an hour goes by, and no Cookie. Time before I’ve been calling and texting him to see if he’s on the way or he’s stuck in traffic due to the strike, which was taking place.

So, as I was about to order a taxi from reception, I get a call at the front desk from Cookie explaining that he would be there in 5 minutes. So, I agreed to wait, and used this time for deep breaths as I was starting to stress about future possibilities to miss the flight due to this delay. In the end all worked out well. I arrived at the airport with minimal traffic 65 minutes before my international flight only to be greeting with a huge line at American Airlines as their computer system went down. More lines, more travel bumps, more patience and deep breaths!

(Computer system down at American Airlines, Mexico City. More fun of travelling!)

 

Well, don’t want to bore you with more flight and travel stories like this.  However, most of my day was spent in transit. From waking up at 10:00AM and arriving in Tampa at 10:05PM via Dallas. That was my day. Transfers, sky-trams, cars, check in counters, lines, ya know. Travel stuff.

 

(My favorite magazine ever; Luxury Pools!HAHA.  The perks of the Admiral Club Lounge)

I am always amazed of the lack of things for me to eat at airports. I mean I could go for the chips, or pretzels or french fries or simple dried out iceberg lettuce salad with dressing I don’t eat do to my non- dairy / lacto diet. But, I happened past a Starbucks which had a vegetairan wrap. I was happy to find this hidden gem. Yes, it was pre-made. But, it had no diary, eggs or meat and had hummus. So, I grabbed it to help my need for nutrition as I haven’t eaten today and had a salad for dinner/lunch yesterday at 1AM.

                           

(Only food I could find for me- worth eating at DFW Airport. Veggie-Hummus wrap)

On the flight to Dallas, I finished reading my book, so I opened my computer and started working on this blog and getting my next Sirius XM mix show ready for voice overs. A 3 hour layover in Dallas and then a short flight to Tampa but with the time zone difference and the delay of AA I was 40 mins late.

So, contacted Brian, the promoter in Tampa and Jay the driver and informed them of the delay and we all agreed it was best to go straight from airport to Hyde Park Café for sound check.

A ‘happy hour’ with a commercial radiostation was taking place when we arrived at 10:45PM. So, being I couldn’t do a check, we went to “Cheap”, the clubs restaurant down the road and had a short but good dinner with Jay. At 11:30 we rolled back over to the club and now noticed familiar faces and ‘heads’ of the Tampa scene which replaced the radio stations happy hour crowd and music.

I enjoy playing this small club in Tampa! One of my favorite spots in the usa. Dj Three and Brian Busto do most of the promotion for their underground nights and I was very happy to return.
I was eager to do a sound check as I was going to try using the pioneer 900 mixer direct with my traktor system tonight without the usual cable hook ups of using the Native Instruments sound card interface. With a quick call early to my friend Lars, at Pioneer to discuss the simple set up and confim technical questions about drivers and digital hook ups. But, I couldn’t do a sound check… Straight to it tonight, a ‘live on the fly give it a go’ mentality with confidence that all will work out.  And all worked out fine. It’s a simple procedure to now only hook up a usb cable to the mixer from my computer and done- Placed the timecode cd’s in the player and opened Traktor a lil’ routing in a pioneer set up app to link the mixer with the app and presto.
I like not having to question things in these situations, but this is a learning night with a new piece of the puzzle for me. So, my usual knee jerk way of doing things and feeling comfortable were set aside for a little bit tonight. But, after the initial set up and the two pieces of hardware and software were working, I sank into my usual calm and confidence “this is what I love to do mode”.

Great times at this small club with new and old friends and people who really want to come out and hear my music. A treat!

Well, I was forced to stop at 2:45AM by the usually gigantic bouncers and I consented the last track to the crowd vocal dismay. But, they knew this familiar setting and quicly smiled and cheered after the “One more tune” chanting.

 

(Hyde Park Cafe in Tampa where there is a Wink shirt dress code inforced!)
Oh yeah, shirts available online in the store! Plug, plug..

 

After gig drinks with friends and staff took place and at 4AM I was declining after hours offers with aspirations of finally checking into the hotel at 4:15AM and possiblities of getting some well deserved sleep!

 

Saturday April 28, 2012: Miami, FL, USA

Well, I got up way before the alarm today. Don’t know why I didn’t really get a solid 7 hrs sleep.  But, I’ll take 5 hours for sure! Laid in the hotel bed, did a lil’ work on this blog and finished up on the Profound Sounds mix show. Checked out and caught the 2pm shuttle to Tampa International for the easy trek to Miami. An easy travel day, besides flying into Miami airport, which I really don’t like. Played a lil’ cat and mouse “Find the Car service” game with the driver, which is typical at MIA airport. I was staying at a hotel right up the street from Space which happens to be almost directly across from the AA arena which was hosting the Knicks/Heat game and being fearful of traffic jams I was pleasantly surprised with a easy 15 minute drive to the hotel. Yet, in the nice room, the windows weren’t sealed and I could hear all the traffic, horns, sirens, fans etc from the heavy Biscane Blvd. I missed out on the possibilites of getting a massage to help my bad back, but the spa was under constuction and they only had one therapist on site, who left early. So, I did the next big thing. Ran a bubble bath in the huge stand alone tub! One which you can fit your whole body in. Full legs and all. None of this: bent knees out of the warm water stuff. I was submerged in hot soothing water and smothered in bath bubbles! So, I relaxed… Trying to clear the mind and just be in the bathtub. It was challenging with the noise emmenating from the street. But, I was soaking and I did my best with simply being.

                          

(Big Bubbles + Big Bathtub + hot water = less back pain)

Got out, dried off, plopped on the comfey bed, checked a couple texts. Replied to a couple of friends who wanted to do the dinner thang… But, with my back and knee in pain, all I really wanted to do was order room service and try and get a nap. So, I did just that. A bit uneventful, yet, this is what I needed. So, I got some food, watched a lil’ netflix and took an hour & half nap. Woke up to a text from Louis, the Promoter from Space and met him downstairs to the quick 1 minute drive to the club at 1:30AM.

Big line outside, and I was excited to be back at space after not playing here since 2004. 8 Years later. Wow.

Fans were in the house, and I felt welcomed with the heavy twitter traffic on my return to space. Escorted to booth, set up, chated with some friends, did the picture things with a bunch of people and started at 2:30. A fun time!  I wish I got to play longer, however, my knee and back were really making it difficult for me to stand, so after 2 ½ hrs I gave the dj reigns over the the resident and headed back to the hotel in the pouring rain! I left the club after 5 and there was a nice size line still queued up all getting soaked from the massive florida rain. All I could think of was lying down and getting off my feel, which mercifully came quick!

 

Sunday April 29, 2012: Philly, PA, USA

I followed my usual protocol of getting ready for the journey home. However, I got up a bit earlier to be able to get a bubble bath in. 6 hrs sleep helped but the dread of dragging myself through the crazy Sunday Miami Airport lingered in my thoughts. I said to myself this is part of what I do. My travel is my work. So, I left the hotel at 215 for a 4PM flight in the pouring afternoon showers. Talked to my lady, who mentioned that the day in Philly was filled with spring vibes, blue skies. I like coming home!

(Icing the knee with the gracious USAIR trash bag on the way home!)

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03.14.16 (Live at Flash DC) Pt. 4
03.07.16 (Live at Flash DC) Pt. 3
02.29.16 (Live at Flash DC) Pt. 2