Wednesday, August 5, 2015

MI travels, friends, and photos

Because we're so 21st century hi-tech, we like to demonstrate how mobile and spontaneous we are by posting regular, timely updates...every few months.  Sheesh.

We are making some progress; but, retooling for the road, getting our chops back up for both performing and traveling, and still trying to dispose of the last of our stuff we can't keep has taken a lot of time and energy.

We have upgraded in key areas and now have a better computer, phone, and power source. That should enable us to at least stay in touch better.

We like to share oddities we encounter, when we can remember in time to get a photo.
Here's a sign we've never seen before:

We don't know why crane feeding became a problem, but, no cranes were in evidence.
Guess it you're not gonna feed 'em...

Michigan, like so many other places, has been uncharacteristically hot this summer.  We have half a dozen fans to cool us, and a new mosquito screen for the nights we're somewhere we feel okay about sleeping with the back doors open.  (Sometimes, it's just 'til we go to sleep, at which time we can pull in the screen from inside and close the doors without getting out of bed.)

What took us by surprise was the warmth of our friends.

Knowing it will be some time, probably, before we're back in Michigan, we tried to schedule a couple of visits when we knew we'd be in certain parts of the state.

We met Mark and Alice Ray several years ago when Alice booked us to perform at Mecosta's "Music On The River" event.  Mark has a radio show and has been a broadcaster for years, as well as working for many years as a musician and performer; so, we had lots in common.  Alice does all Mark's booking, so she and Judy had war stories to swap while Whitt and Mark shared and compared their knowledge of music trivia.
We have enjoyed their hospitality and fellowship immensely over the years, and have met and made new friends, sharing music around their kitchen table.  Mark Bauman, Mary (Polly) Lehnert, and Dave Leonard have all become musical family to us there.

In Traverse City, a longtime friend we met in Alpena, Joni, came to see one of our retirement facility shows, and then took us to her new place, where we enjoyed the pool and hot tub and then were fed. Yes, life on the road is tough.

Another friend we wanted to see before we left the state offered to meet us in Gaylord, to help save us time and fuel.  He treated us to a restaurant dinner, and, as we talked, a call came in from some of our very best friends from Mt. Misbegot, fiddler, guitarist, singer, and event producer, Jeff Felmlee and his friend Linda Tallieu.  They had seen we were going to play in Traverse City and called to find out the exact time.  The receptionist told them "7 pm."  Not so, unfortunately.  It was at 2:00 in the afternoon.  They drove all the way there, five hours late, to surprise us.  They called to tell us what had just happened, and, when they found out we were in Gaylord, came to meet us there and we had a wonderful reunion.

We felt like we were being lovingly and gently eased back into a lifestyle that has definitely enriched us.  Financially, it's always been tight, to say the least; but music and laughter have brought us some treasured, enduring friendships.  We think that's what they're for.

As always, we enjoyed finding new ways we could be mis-named.

These were wonderful folks.  We tried to not disappoint them by only being a duo.  (Each of us worked 50% harder.)

Of course we were sad that First Aid for the Soul had been cancelled; but, at least someone thought our music was special--special enough to write in red!

Here, again, it was the washboard that captured the imagination.

We are trying not to let all this recognition affect our attitude, and will strive to avoid the pitfalls all this dizzying fame engenders.

Off now to a gig in Frankenmuth.

Hope to see you out there!