Life is made of highways.
At least that’s what it feels like for The Saidat Show. I would like to give you just a glimpse of what of past 10 days have looked like for me and my crew.
Let me take a moment to outline the daily schedule in my world – wake-up call every weekday between 3 and 4am; get performance ready (clothes, make-up, hair); grab meals for the road; pick up my assistant on time (which rarely ever happens, lol); drive a minimum of 2 hours, one way, to reach our performance venue; arrive at said venue at least 1 hour before show time; lug all the equipment into the school (I am my own roadie); set up our pretty extensive set (sound system, speakers, podiums, banners, etc.); inspire students by singing, dancing and jumping around for 6 hours; tear down the extensive set; lug the equipment back out to the van; drive at least 2 hours home; drop off my assistant; reach my home any time after 7 pm; help with homework; spend time with my family; prep meals for the next day; try to have some “me time” while still getting to bed by 11 pm.
On April 18th, we had shows in Peterborough. It was also my son’s 14th birthday. Peterborough is more than a 3-hour drive from our home, thus adding 2 hours, return, to my workday (see schedule above). I traveled to Peterborough. I danced. I sang. I jumped. I had a world of fun with students all day then I drove drive back home in order to celebrate Isaiah’s birthday with him before he went to bed.
Ten hours later I was back on the highway headed to Peterborough with my beautiful fiancee, Kristina, and our amazing friend, Justin Preston of Rise Against Bullying. This was the perfect opportunity for Kristina to train Justin who had decided to help us on our upcoming tour of the East Coast. He endured a quick-on-the-job training course on being my assistant and DJ before driving the 3 hours back home in order to prepare for the adventure ahead – 4 Provinces in 10 days. Two days in Ottawa, 1 day in Prince Edward Island, 5 days in Nova Scotia and 2 days in New Brunswick.
We saw a lot of highway on this trip. We drove through the night; sleeping in the van. No hotels for The Saidat Show crew on this trip. Our schedule included full-day, 6-hour school shows; parent nights; and singing the national anthem for the Island Storm Basketball.
The most exciting part of this trip, for me anyway, is the amazing new wrap on our Caravan (generously donated by Oxford Dodge), letting everyone know that we are in town. It’s so nice to see the excitement on the faces of both students and teachers when we pull up to their school. They know that the party has arrived.
It has been such a blessing to see this dream, a dream I cherished for years, to take The Saidat Show to different places and inspire students outside my home turf. The East Coast Tour began with one amazing person who believed in what we do – someone who took the risk to have us present at her school. I will always be grateful to Madame Cormier of Frank L. Bowser School. I am forever indebted to her for helping to open the door to amazing opportunities in wonderful new places.
The people who live on the East Coast of Canada are some of the kindest, most hospitable people we have ever had the pleasure to meet. We always feel so spoiled by the warm welcomes and friendly smiles of these amazing people. It’s so beautiful out East. If you’ve ever been you can understand why we so look forward to the next time we’ll have the opportunity to tour the East Coast provinces.
I feel that most of my weekdays are spent on the road – driving down great stretches of highway. On the road I find peace, shed tears, find inspiration and have my patience tested. I think some of life’s greatest lessons are learned on the road. Whatever your road may look like or wherever it may take you there is a lesson to be learnt. Keep moving. Keep inspiring. Keep thinking of new ideas. Oh, and stay awake. Also, know when it’s time to pull over and take a break. That’s key. No matter whether you’re driving on a literal highway or a figurative one, rest is sacred. These lessons are what make life the most amazing highway.
Live. Give. Dream. Live.Give. Grow.