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|Sunday November 2 |
Motel 6 Redding, CA, it is kind of exciting to be doing this again. The parking, the checking in, the turning on the television: Nightmare Before Christmas: Jack Skellington needs to borrow some equipment. It's going to be either too hot or too cold in this room. Temperature regulation one of the most difficult challenges of tour traveling. We all have our preferences. This morning I was home, I mean Saturday morning, now I am on the way to Seattle to meet Wes, driving monster minivan, it feels like the big old Econoline of tours of yore. A long drive up 5 mostly in the dark due to late start but leaving home is hard. Caravans of fire trucks heading back north from fighting the SoCal fires. David and Alex(ander) came by w/ moving-blanket loan and handy hand for piano hauling, were rewarded by Sarah w/ banana peanut butter pancakes. Last night was Halloween in the courtyard. Scarecrow, fog machine, giant cat head, multiple pumpkins, candles, headstones, cobwebs, spiders, spooky glowing eyes. Real rain which came and went but did not deter candy-intent little children. I hear a honking horn of Redding, CA. Abigail was a bee which is appropriate she loves flowers. Lucas was a cat sometimes a cat in a pumpkin but he is only a few months new and had no idea. Alex(ander) a dead student, he was pierced w/ pencils like St. Sebastian, his clever own idea though the St. Sebastian parallels probably more coincidental than intended, he's only 11 and not Catholic. Steve (in gold lame tailcoat) ordered pizza. Sebastian (dead hippie) and Sarah(2) (strangled prom queen) threw party, made margaritas, sent people home who came uncostumed. Sarah(1) had velcro horns and there was a bolt through my head. Now I am here and the people of Halloweentown are trying to kick it Xmas style, it can be difficult. Tomorrow the Cascades, destination: Portland.
Portland, or West Linn actually, home of Susan & Joe, Kate & Azalea (sister in law et cie), room of Azalea who is set up downstairs in the computer room but frankly now that I think of it I could/should be sleeping there. Well perhaps it's an adventure for her. A stuffed lizard (not a realistic stuffed lizard but a lizard oll) I am supposed to feed. "He eats water and crumbs." It's me and the dolls here (many rabbits and bears a dog Betty Boop and a generic humanoids. Script for "Puppet Show by Azalea and Zoë (her cousin, who was visiting) in the Living Room The Show 'The Giant.'" "Once upon a time there were 3 little birds and they were asleep." Dinner at Typhoon which is still good. (See previous tour diaries.) Kim R the kindly waitress acc. to the bill. Very tired. Rain in the mountains a few snow flurries. Stopped in Dunsmuir in the mountain reaches of verymost No Cal for coffee and excellent pastries from the Cornerstone Cafe I've got the card somewhere I daresay I'll be back. The breakfast looked good too. Finished listening (started yesterday) to Laurie Anderson's United States 1-4 Live. Also the David Sedaris at Carnegie Hall I bought Sarah and she lent me that got me through quite a stretch of stretch. Talking people makes time fly. Tomorrow is Monday and Seattle. Work begins (different work than the driving work, which is work).
Tuesday November 4
Seattle. Sitting on the floor in Kurt's office at Kurt's where we are rehearsing and staying. I am the only mouse stirring though perhaps Wes has the right idea he is asleep. (Kurt is merely absent.) I am tired too. Radio this morning, two songs live on The Mountain that's 103 point something I believe, never before played by me. First show tonight. Two days of rehearsal counting this one. Local movement tally: two trips to Fremont (Mexican food last night, Longshoreman's Daughter this morning), two trips to Ballard (Hattie's Hat last night, errands today). Oh the nicest hardware store that ever there was is there. It is clean and woody open and professional not in a Home Depot way but in a way that takes hardware seriously. Professionally. In fact most of the hardware must have been elsewhere, it was relatively speaking a hardware free environemtn. All I got was a little thing of WD40 to oil the squeaky piano pedal but there was an air of ceremony about the whole process that was very impressive. At Hattie's were Britt and Al, who looked a little like Eric Westfall but is Kurt's brother and lives in Roanake through which I will likely pass on the way home from NYC and I will look him up possibly. The trip from Portland happily unremarkable except for stop in Olympia and a bite at the Spar Cafe. Kurt took a picture of my back for the cover of the Sgt. Major album (mine will be one back among many).
Wednesday November 5
Kurt's basement. There was a cat here and now gone. Debating: basement or couch. It is unseasonably cold here, it is cold even for here. Show #1 is history and it was very fine notwithstanding (notwithstanding errors). So many new songs. New old songs. Old old songs not played in so long they might as well be new. Then we were in Hattie's again. In the course of the evening saw Jim and Britt and Carol and John. Steve who was in Chicago. I am very tired goodnight.
Upstairs. Have been out briefly. It is cold it is cold even for Seattle everyone is remarking on the cold, which is cold. It is warmer in Chicago today says the weather map. What I really need is a whether map. Kurt and Carmella who came over made breakfast it was the best breakfast I've had since writing any of the words on this page. Wes is listening to soccer on the internet I hear the voices from the other room. The day is moving on what will I do with the rest of it I don't know I had thought about the EMP Kurt is on display I think he is a legend in the Pacific Northwest but I would not lay money on my getting there.
is an appropriate time for Seattle. The day has been a kind of long lull w/ brief episodes of activity, i.e. going into Ballard. In Tully's twice already, will end up in Hattie's again doubtless. No EMP. Wes off in the cold somewhere playing football. Kurt working. Monty Python DVD for noise and company. Cheese, crackers. If I were to go out where would I go besides into the cold? Well I don't have a good answer for that. Tomorrow will be a long day running all the way to Ashland but no farther. What else: well. Of course the more interesting things happen in a day the less time I have to write about them. And vice versa if you see what I mean. Kurt has been attracted away from work by the Pythons, the sherry drinking vicar sketch. Now Kurt has left the room but still laughing at the sound.
Thursday November 6
Ashland Oregon. Well let's see the heater has just kicked on and the Learning Channel has a show about crimes and how to commit them and we drove down from Seattle this morning after breakfast at Vera's and Mt. Rainier was only dimly occluded in all its volcanic glory and we stopped in Eugene briefly and went to the Buy and Sell Store where once I bought a pump organ and once I bought a flute but nothing today except coffee across the street and then we drove to Ashland listening mostly to Wes's I-pod music alphabetically and didn't go to the movies but did go to the Black Sheep pub where the waitresses wear kicky mod Carnaby St. caps. We were there w/ Josh just one year ago but Josh is not here now he is having a career elsewhere though we are playing the Tin Angel only a night apart perhaps we will leave him some personal graffiti unless it's him who plays first in which case perhaps he'll leave us some graffiti. Educational information from the Learning Channel: "Thieves you see work in pairs." Sarah got to go to the Disney Hall tonight with Mark that was in Los Angeles.
Friday November 7
Backstage at Winters Bob is here he is servicing and networking businesses with less than 30 employees. What’s that. I just put you in my tour diary I said to Bob. The backstage room seems like a different size but that’s how it is when you come back to a place sometimes like home after you go away to school. Bob says Winters seems more lively than last year and it’s true it does we ate on the corner in the I don’t know what it’s called but it was good I had the something corn pie and the bread pudding that almost seems redundant doesn’t it. There was a salad too, though, for good road health and a darn decent one. Bob is reading the graffiti of the Winters Opera House backstage, or I should say the Palms should I say. Wes is in an office e mailing. And a good breakfast in Ashland too we are doing well today. Here’s Wes, hey (I say) I brought up your harmonica holder. Mt. Shasta on the way down looked funtastic, it was all visible but there were clouds coming off the south side and stretching across the sky like they were part of the mountain or made by it and of course it lasts and lasts and lasts Shasta you see it forever and pass it forever. Not exactly forever. Another stop at the Cornerstone Cafe in the No Cal “historic railroad town” of Dunsmuir. Clip goes the string that Wes has changed. Now he is explaining the EP to Bob. We were here w/ Josh one year ago not exactly today. The amplified voice of the opening act booms through and his harmonica. Now we are going across the “roadway” for a beer.
Back from across street where there was beer and the heads of dead animals. Opener guy just sang skip to my lou my darling. Bob is asking me about writing about television. And now Wes is here.
Sunday November 9
San Francisco California. Beck's Motor Lodge on the street called Market. Long day done, started in Los Angeles ending in... Beck's Motor Lodge on Market Street. College students are going wild on the television set. Drove up w/ Jim Healey in the van. There was a rainbow on 5. Jim is across the Bay. Emily (my something or other) was there for the first half at least, she had to go off to study for middterms, and looking as lovely as ever lovelier perhaps. Laura briefly. Russ and Kim. Tracy and friends. CVS in the house. Bob Whitfield. Trudy of course. The whole night spent in the block or so between here and Lucky 13, w/ Cafe du Nord in the middle. Bob Berlin from high school. Caren from high school w/ Harry not from high school, but fairly old friend now. I'll tell you what. Last night down in Long Beach we played on the Queen Mary, somewhere down near where the boiler room used to be. We played in the smoke of a smoke machine. I don't know why. Between Deerhoof and Mike Watt/George Hurley. Nels was there backstage in all his tallness. We had our own bucket of beer it was between Deerhoof's and Mike Watt's and George Hurley's on a long table of buckets of beer. Tom was there w/ Cal but missed us. Saw Matt outside w/ Byron and of course Dr. Mark B. Sender, also Claudia Grau his better half. Byron likes the Spice Girls. Matt has not yet read The Third Policeman which apparently I lent him but it must have been years ago. Sonic Youth seen briefly from afar, from not exactly gangplank of Queen Mary. Shins heard not seen. Spoon missed. Dinner at Sir Winston's, Sarah wrangled that for us, "on board," violating the dress code (semi-formal), I suppose the laminates made up for it. We took a walk around the big boat, which is big. There was a picture of Fred Astaire standing by a stair by the stair he was standing by.
Tuesday November 11
Yesterday was a driving day down from San Francisco after Peet's across Market and an errand to 24th and picking up Jim across the Bay. Back on 5 for what the 4th time this trip I think. I did not mention the Stockton McDonald's (emergency breakfast fallback) where a shirtless man tried to sell us a gold ring for $20. Inside a very very very very large man was going through the trash perhaps he had lost a gold ring in it. Sgt. Major sounding very good on the stereo hi fi. Little of interest a quick trip relatively speaking or psychologically speaking it always takes about the same time getting back here from S.Francisco. Cobras and Matadors last night another good food idea of Sarah's, that's Steve Arroyo's restaurant he used to live here in our happy little courtyard. Karen Schoemer wrote and says she likes Fleshpot that's Eric's band (he used to live here in the happy little courtyard too) they have a track on the new Trampoline Records comp. It's gray today a little chilly in fact. A 90 minute trip or so to Santa Barbara looms for the afternoon, an early leave to beat the traffic and maximize pre show tourism. Kirk can't come. Alison can come. Jim can come. Tony maybe can come. All a riding in the van van. Before that there will be cleanliness, coffee and something to eat.
Back from lunch. Jeannie is back working at Cafe du Village after 9 mos. in Canada. Kirk is not going to Santa Barbara. Tony is not going to Santa Barbara. Alison is going to Santa Barbara and Jim is going to Santa Barbara and they should be here in about 15 minutes. I am looking up the OK City trip on the computer the other computer. It's 1346.7 miles and we need to be there by Friday which is of course possible but not easy. There is laundry to be changed in the washing machine. Elsa is hiding somewhere because there are men painting and hammering and I can't give her her Elsa medicine she is a cat by the way.
Wednesday November 12
Hello you. And I do mean you. You know who I mean. I am sitting crosslegged on my very own bed outside the window is a sound like a rattlesnake but I don't think it is, how would a rattlesnake get up on the roof (I am on a 2nd floor). Also the sound of traffic going by on Wilton. Trees, treetops out every window. We are going toward Oklahoma City today but we are going most likely to Flagstaff AZ. You can get a good cup of coffee there in the morning I happen to know. That will be tomorrow morning. Last night was Santa Barbara where they kick it Old California style. State Street that great street. Of course most everything closed, including the oldest bookstore or used bookstore in California supposedly. A real piano said to be in tune but not exactly quite in tune it proved but used anyway. Difficult in certain respects I mean I could feel it in my arms after a couple of songs it's different than the Korg albeit that is the closest to the real thing I've ever played and it's 13 yrs. old now. Rose was there. Mark B. Sender came up and so did Dian(n)e. I asked Mark if he enjoyed performing surgery he is a surgeon and he says he does because it struck me it may not be all like it is on TV where it's always tense and serious I mean it may be more like working on a car or even playing a folk rock show and apparently it is or can be. I am sorry Kirk couldn't come that would have been fun. Jim has a phone that sends pictures he sent one to me but I never did get it. T. Rex again on the way back Wes is obsessing over Ride a White Swan. I have 35 minutes to move my car I can do that. Look here is an e-mail but not Jim's. I should say also that there are additions and corrections to the above entries so you may want to reread, that you're reading this at all seems to make that not unlikely. Someone is watering.
Flagstaff AZ. Mountain time. Days Inn. Fresh from Chilis. The last couple of driving hours were all about: rain, dark, trucks, mountains, wind. And tiring you can imagine. Things were okay on and off until Seligman and then it was just a slow slog. But here we are having dined at apparently the only open restaurant in all of Flagstaff. Seligman, a little strip of old Rte. 66 that markets itself if that's not too strong a word as a Little Strip of Old Rte. 66, denied us twice for dinner, both the West Side and Road Kill cafes closing exactly when we arrived, though ultimately this was perhaps not such a bad thing. Sarah says that Matt says there were flash floods today in Compton. Also Rose (niece) turned 21 today now she and Emily can hang out in bars together. I would like to be 21 but me now. The desert before night and unrelenting rain was beautiful the clouds and the mountains and light doing impressive things together all colorful and dramatic. Now I am collapsible I could collapse. But I am going to the van for water (2 waters one each).
Thursday November 13
Tucumcari as famed in song. Stopping over on the way to OK City. Nothing on the TV but the TV is on. This a.m. in Flagstaff: coffee from Marcy's, bagels from Biff's. Biff was a dog. There was a kitty at the motel picking its way among the puddles. We drove to Albuquerque and in Albuqerque we ate at El Patio awardwinning best New Mexican restaurant. A man in a gas station he was the gas station cashier saw my guitar picks when I was getting out change and said he collected them, he had three and I said well here's one more it was a yellow one. A dog is herding sheep on the David Letterman show, sorry two dogs. Right into the former Ed Sullivan Theater. Good doggies.
Saturday November 15
Oklahoma City Oklahoma. This morning or technically Friday morning we were in Tucumcari as above and then we drove here and what happened on the way is that there was a lot of wind (as per the song Oklahoma). In Amarillo I went to 4 places to find a power cord and found it. Shamrock TX again w/ the Texas shaped sink in the McDonald's. We had to leave one hotel because there was only one room with one bed and we came to this hotel where I am now where there two beds but the smell of smoke and the sound of Conan O'Brien or is it Brian and we have to sleep because we have to get up early and go to Austin which is back in Texas but another part of Texas than the part we drove through. Tonight was the Blue Door w/ Greg and his new wife Tina and their remodeled digs in the back really when you play the Blue Door you're playing Greg's house which has the feel of an old roadhouse church, it leans in on itself. It's a good place to be and play. Not the biggest audience but possibly the most vocal I mean in a good way. There were four girls down front on the right my right who brought a cooler and whooped a lot. Dinner was at Salathai (sp?) as it was last year and again it was different and delicious. The very polite waiter reminded us of Josh. Outside it was cold.
Sunday November 16
Austin Texas. Holiday Inn. Played: Cactus Cafe. There: Paul and Kayci. Kayci busy these days running Moxy a kind of arts and crafts retail cooperative. Also Robin from old world of L.A. More Thai food tonight at the same place we ate last year w/ Josh and Slaid Cleaves this time we ate w/ Jeff Cline Kline? Who opened. Another good Thai and slightly different Thai restaurant in the Central Time Zone. Afternoon: napped. It was a long drive from OK City, nothing happened much, there was a fire near a McDonald's, I missed some exits that would have taken me to a Starbucks, southern Oklahoma is pretty I think. I wanted to buy something in the Tower Records near the Cactus but I didn't buy anything. Wes found a new Dave Rave CD he hadn't even heard about. Tomorrow is another longer drive, all the way to Memphis, and perhaps farther. To get to Chicago to see the people, we are playing there absurdly enough tomorrow night. I suppose I should go to sleep then good night.
Tuesday November 18
Sheila's house is groaning. I am on the French Bed there are more pillows here than six people would need. Tonight driving here from Schuba's up Lincoln I stopped to let a bunny rabbit cross the street. Right in the middle of Chicago. There is also a river right in the middle of Chicago I don't mean the big one I mean the little one with trees almost a secret river like the secret river in Bologna. Sunday drive from Austin to northern Alabama via the Outback Steakhouse in Little Rock. Helpful waitress who had been to Chicago and had fun. Men in rest stop bowing toward Mecca. Thick fog we stopped somewhere. In the morning I was surprised to see how flat it was I had felt almost like we were in the mountains that has happened to me before that's how it is when you can't see two feet in front of your face. Then to Chicago and just in time. Traffic of course on the Kennedy Expwy. Sheila, Sharon, Bethann, Dag, Carson, Linda, Tilney from Madison and her friend Maria. But no Deanna or Kelly. Schuba's packed back to the door. They cooked our food again because we had no time to eat it and were most generous in the comping department. Shout outs and love to you the people of Schuba's. Post show wind down at Sheila's incl. Dave Max Crawford. And Carson who I first met those many years ago in Ireland and we drove around w/ my sister and Dennis, Pat stayed in Dublin. She bonded over theater w/ Sharon and Greg who is Bethann's new roommatethey are both in the Goodman Theater A Christmas Carol, Sharon is Mrs. Fezziwig and the charwoman, Greg is young Ebenezer. In the morning there will be Tre Kroner as per usual.
Thursday November 20
Philadelphia. DONNA BAKER WRITES: "As usual Robert is feeling very sleepy at this time of the evening. So I am the designated diarist. The show was good, isn't it always? Robert accompanied his good friend Chris Mills on his last song, one of many about suicide and requiems. What a guy that Chris! Then the main act, keyboards for Robert on this tour, but we all know about that already. A member of the audience asked about the accordion, but I don't think he was disappointed when he heard the songs played in their full splendor on the Korg. The best new song was "Negative Love," which had wonderful Bachrachian overtones. Both musicians performed admirably. Enough about their art, how did my evening go? I took a cab to the venue from my home, which is about two miles distant. As we drove through the newly darkened city at dusk in the rain, I wanted the ride to last in a forever loop around Rittenhouse Square with the recently put up fairy lights in all the trees. Carol, my friend for forty years, was waiting at the Tin Angel for me and then I met a lovely woman named Cheryl who is a singer who in all probablity will be appearing shortly at the bar Carol works in in Doylestown. Then the show proper started and for the first time in a year the folks who are in the know got to hear some rockin' good stuff from you know who. Robert and Wes both thought that "Driving in the Rain" was the show stopper since it has been raining cats and dogs at least since Pittsburgh. Robert is doing all the driving this trip since it's only the two of them and Wes still hasn't yet got the hang of right hand driving. Robert is quite the exhausted chap, and in need of rest. But the tour this year is much better than it was last year when they went right into harrm's way to Arlington VA when the sniper killings were still ongoing. But the music goes on for better or worse, and tonight it was better. Robert met my old friend and colleague, Larry Meehan, and although Larry invitted my husband Jamie to join his private golfing group, the same courtesy was not extended to Robert (or Wes). Such athletic chaps that they are! But I am sure this is purely a matter of physical proximity rather than manly prowess. If you ever meet Larry, in a bar naturally, no, your hearing has not suddenly gone bad, he mumbles terribly, so do not be embarrased in the least to ask him to repeat himself. I hear Wes has written a novel loosely based on one his songs, Miss Forturne. It seems that Miss Fortune is a neo-Anlgo Britney Spears who boosted a sugar daddy to support her desire to become a woman who has achieved a place in life totally through her own devices. Goodness, who will read this book... Let us just say, if you loved the song, buy the book! I was happy to see George at the Tim Angel this evening, and even more happy when I heard what he had been through these past couple of weeks. George, skinny as a rail, has congestive heart failure, who woulda figured. After treatment of weeks in hospital, he was doing sound as always and drinking just a wee bit of Jack in his red wine. The show ended and Wes sold way too many CD's, and Robert and I drove off from Second Street all the way west to the tiny, tiny, tiny Waverly Strret. What happened is something only a very few enthusiasts of precision parallel parking could appreciate. Suffice it to say that rather than risking a parking ticket from the oh so caring parents and teachers of the Philadelphia School, my immediately adjacent neighbor, we white-knuckled it to a glorious spot right on the block. Dear ones, I am up way past my usual bedtime, and I would only do this with Robert at my side. So, read at your leisure, or respond immediately, we have a half a bottle of whiskey and a half a bottle of Sambuca to go, so give us your thoughts and musings. (Not for me, of course, but Robert has yet another week on the road, and he will certainly welcome all greetings and salutations that his friends have to give.) All my best to you out there, Donna E. Baker, Esq."
Friday November 21
Lowell, Mass. where Jack Kerouac was born and/or raised long before this hotel was built. It is a nice hotel and soon I will be asleep in it. There is the TV reporting on the misadventures of Mike Jackson. The Jacksons lived not so very far from me, just up from the Gelson's on Hayvenhurst. Today's drive was not full of rain unlike yesterday's drive and the drive before that, it rained on us practically all the way from Chicago and such rain as is rarely seen it was hard and loud and made the road disappear and made me tired, it was such relief just to drive under a bridge or through a tunnel. In Philadelphia a whole scaffolding came down on a block of cars we saw this as we drove to the Tin Angel. I saw the Jacksons back when Michael still had his old nose and hair etc. they were good. There's Fred Willard he's funny. Stayed up too late last night with Donna it was like being back in school I mean college school. Lowell has cobblestones downtown and the streets run at funny angles it looks like a Hollywood backlot down there. We stopped in Southbury today for sandwiches, we have done that before, and before that we stopped for Starbuckskaffe on the New Jersey Turnpike we have done that before too. There was a nice little crowd at Capo's in Lowell they were little but nice. Well I don't mean they were individually little they were all pretty normal in that regard. That is an awful world normal. There's an ad for The Haunted Mansion, Randy did some sound editing on that. Okay. There is Conan. I guess it's late then. There is the strangest noise coming from the ceiling, as if the whole floor upstairs were on springs and someone was hopping on it I have never heard anything like this in any hotel I have ever been in. It sounds like it's going to come down on our head. There is Martha Stewart w/ Conan I like Martha I'm sorry she's in that mess she looks a little tired. Me too. Now there is a large thump in the hallway.
Wednesday November 25
Arlington, VA. The tour is over. I have been either too busy (w/ work or fun), tired or sick to write. (I have a widdle cold.) Sorry. Last show sealed w/ a last show handshake at the lovely Iota in Arlington, which neighborhood has changed radically in the last year w/ addition of mall and other large retail spaces. So let us go back and fill in the last days. Okay. Lowell: Got up, went to get the van Jiffy Lubed. Next door an Indian grocery store, we bought Indian pop music CDs. Then an easy drive to Cambridge. For a change. And a hotel right on Harvard Square, for another change. This was Friday. Lunch at the Bombay Club, above the little square or rectangle I love so much, the one that Peet's is on, w/ the criss cross paths and the nice fence. Record shopping. Central Square and the Middle East, the upstairs room that was a new one, it's like a smaller TT's (which is next door), actually possibly not smaller, better shaped anyway, and not as loud, w/ some pointed arches a la Alladin. Sound checked and waited for Amy who was coming in from Northampton, and while waiting talked to opener Blake Hazard and her boyfriend or husband possibly John who also has a band or is a band called Jack Drag, they were lovely and are moving to Los Angeles. Amy arrived and we (Amy, me, Wes) went to the Green Street Grill which we have often done before though w/o Amy, and that was nice, and Amy had pictures of Elizabeth and Sarah who are looking more grown up and beautiful than ever, and also presents, and also the catalog for the Picture Book Museum where she runs the cafe. Amy told the story of the woman who hijacked her life for a novel it is not a pretty tale. Back at the club there was Josh Ritter our little friend from last year. Josh said Blake is F. Scott Fitzgerald's granddaughter but I said that was impossible, knowing a thing or two about F. Scott Fitzgerald. (She is his great-grandaughter, apparently, and I will accept that.) Abby's great great grandfather built the Brooklyn Bridge. Josh sang along on "Lady of the Highways" which he did often last year. It is always good to see him he is a nice boy. The next day it was Saturday and Wes went and watched football and I wandered around Harvard Square spending money and then we met and bought bagels and drove to Providence where we had no hotel at all and went to record stores and a used book store Myopic and drank tea in Teadluxe and also after soundcheck ate Japanese food in a little place w/ a helpful smiling staff and an overwhelmingly young or rather overwhelmingly a young clientele, and then more tea at Zog a cafe next door and then back to the club and Jimmy the Zen soundman who felt challenged in a good way by our rare quietude and there were a few people there and it was a pretty good show all around in fact except in the sense of attendance and next door there was a band I heard covering the Dead and in fact they did it very well the guitar player had Jerry's tone and mixolydian scales down pat. Fetched the van afterward there was a corvette parked in front of it w/ the vanity plate CAPPO. That's a mob town Providence or so I have been told. There was a lot of activity on the streets suddenly all these dance clubs and such but the vibe was sleazy sort of. Went to Abby's mother's Connecticut house and I woke up in the morning to a sunlit lake w/ two swans gliding across it and a cute little New England town across the way. This was Sunday. We drove to Joe's Pub in the city of New York and soundchecked and then I ran into Wes at Tower Video where I knew he was going and then we went to another video store, Kim's, and then ate Japanese food, and then I went to the St. Marks bookshop and bought a fat MOMA catalog for $15, and then I went down to Dean and Delucca in Soho and bought some Irish soda bread and Gruyere cheese and then I went to meet Lacy and Ian at a bar on 5th and 3rd I think it was an Irishy pub very simple and Karen called when I was there so I said come here to the bar and then she did and then I left them all there and went back to the club and Sarah's plane was late and I will tell you some more later. Right now I am going to the lobby of the Days Inn Arlington and see about some hot water for tea I have told you about my widdle cold. It is in my dose.
Sunday November 30
Flagstaff, AZ, where the Barnes and Noble stays open until 11, which is a good thing because nothing else seems to; young people congregate in the cafe which has a real woodburning fire. The selfsame Days Inn I wrote you from on November 12. (Hotel Monte Vista in the downtown area such as it is rejected by me as scuzzy, but this is a fine place and where I had in any case meant to stay.) Now we (me, Sarah) are passing back through this time in a westerly direction. Which means that tomorrow I will be home. Not only tour but traveling will then be done. The final days of the tour proper have however yet to be fully told. So where were we? We were in a bar called Scratcher I believe around the corner from Joe's Pub which is in the Public Theater I once saw a Richard Foreman play there. Long time ago. I was there in the bar w/ Karen and Ian and Lacy and then I went over to the theater and ran into Dave Rave and the Scandinavian jazz trio that preceded us separately had finished and they were in the kind of passageway that runs behind the club drinking champagne with their goodlooking friends. We put our musical instruments onstage we weren't using my keyboard that night we were using the house grand piano and very grand it was too and the people started coming in. I arranged for the ticket person to tell Sarah to sit with Mike Leahy and I gave Mike my drink token and said get a martini ready. (I had told Lacy/Karen/Ian the same thing, both parties obliged.) It was all full at Joe's Pub and the show was excellent I particularly liked "She's a Piece of Work" we put something into that, "Master Kilby" too I found satisfying. I saw Jeroen and Thessa come in while I was onstage. I found Sarah on my midset break she had just arrived (and already had been given one of her martinis), not only was her plane late but her cab driver did not know where he was going and really how hard is it to find Astor Place? And Amy was there she came from Amherst after having just come to Boston I mean Cambridge. Then we went to a bar I don't remember the name. W/ a couple of Wes's friends I never really quite meet, I mean I meet them, but never substantially converse. Well one day. Dave Rave telling his Dylan story, it's a good gone. Amy left in a cab after she parked her car up by Steve's which is way way uptown because she knows the neighborhood. Back to Brooklyn. Next a.m.: breakfast w/ Mel and Ed baby Asher I hadn't seen Melanie since Asher was inside her and a tight red cocktail dress, Ed is over being a policeman he probably won't be one anymore. We ordered two types of plantains the green and the sweet I only ate the sweet. Post office. Then the Rosenquist show at the Guggenheim that was good. Then back to Brooklyn for drinks w/ Mike, Nina, their shy soon to be born baby, Lacy, Ian. At a bar called Bar. I think. Then down the street to a stunning Japanese meal w/ Wes, Abby. Osaka perhaps? Home of the Red River Roll, I loved it in spite of the squid. No shoes. Sarah bought ginger snaps next door. Next day early coffee w/ Thessa at Ozzie's I have spent quite a bit of time in that particular coffeehouse, the one on 7th Ave, and then driving w/ Sarah to Arlington and there was the most spectacular sky over D.C., and everything was good at the Iota all the usual lovely people and the good meal next door and that was the last show. The next day headed home, first stop Knoxville, second Memphis (Thanksgiving at the Peabody though even from our balcony vantage we couldn't really see the duck march there were too many people crowding around them I merely saw them hop into the fountain), third OK City and back to eat at Salathai and dropped in on Greg and Tina at the Blue Door and in the morning saw the Federal Bldg. memorial which is a well made space, and the next night which was last night was Santa Fe and a good dinner really a great dinner I should say at Old House and tonight it's Flagstaff and tomorrow I'm home, the end.