Random Meeting in Portland

Hello all, it has been a while since I have written about my travels. I got back from Portland, OR on the 1st and have struggled on what to write about the city. Things were not quote so adventurous as Chicago was. But there is one great story to tell.

It’s sunny and the temperature is in the mid 50’s. The wind is slightly blowing and I am sitting on the outside deck of a coffee shop called Barista. Ali and I ventured here after starting our walk over by the water front. We hiked our way to the Pearl District and have already hit up Powell’s Books and Everyday Music. Books and vinyl? Two of my favorite things.

Now we are sitting outside at Barista; coffee is my other favorite thing. The building houses a string of businesses and Barista just happens to be one of them. The deck outside is essentially the only seating for the cafe. I walked in and appreciated how simple their menu was. I was not overwhelmed with the anxiety of not knowing how to order. I grab a soy mocha, and Ali joins me outside to people watch.

As we sit there, I see this young couple walking down the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street. I think I recognize the male but cannot be sure until he walks closer. As he approaches, I turn to Ali and say “I think that’s Tom Falcone, All Time Low’s photographer.” She shakes her head thinking it is just  someone who looks like him.

As he gets close to Barista, he looks at us and addresses me, “Don’t I know you?” So I yell out in reply, “Yes you do!” Then I run down the steps and meet him on the sidewalk. He tells me the tour has a day off before their sold out show at The Roseland Theatre in downtown PDX.  That just gets the conversation rolling. He introduces me to his girlfriend, and we talk about how crazy it is that the two of us just happened to run into each other. I’m known for seeing him on tour in places like Atlanta or Nashville. Never would have expected to see him like this, 2000 miles from home.

When it comes up that Ali and her friend both have tickets for the show but I don’t, Tom surprises me. “Do you want to go to the show? I can text our tour manager and get you on the list.”

I am so stunned by his offer. “Yes, I’d like to go!” Tom whips out his phone to text All Time Low’s tour manager. He asks me “Your last name is Lawrence, right? Allison Lawrence?” I confirm with him. He just happens to remember my full name even though we rarely actually call each other by name. Then he tells me to message him the next day about the show and I’m good to go.

We hug and say our goodbyes. I go back to Ali and tell her what happened. So, the next evening, just as the three of us get to the venue, Tom messages me on Facebook saying “hey, you’re on the list. Have a good time!”

I never think too hard about how some of the people I’ve met on tours could be a connection. But this is my first taste of how knowing someone in the industry just pays off.

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