Photo: Texas rest area view
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May 2005

We left South Florida after 4 weeks in the studio (building, not recording) and two travel days later the mighty 2.2L engine of the 84 Toyota camper that is our new home has carried us to... North Florida.

Don't get me wrong. For a house, the toyo RV is really, really fast. In a race between her and most homes and apartments, she'll likely win. But while posing as a motorized vehicle, we are passed by everything, by cars foreign and domestic, by tandem trucks and trailered boats, by farm equipment and mopeds, by the Joads in a cut up ‘36 Hudson.

Went to Susquehanna two weeks earlier, a lightly attended festival beautifully set in the rolling watershed hills of Northern Maryland. Saw Johnathan Byrd and Dar Williams for the first time, both awesome. I am lucky enough to win a guitar in the raffle, luckier still to win second place in the songwriting contest. Tuesday after, in DC, in the studio again, (recording, not building), vocal tracks for Chris Chandler's new CD.

Photo: Dallas, city centerWe get to Dallas Friday night for the Wildflower! Festival, and though I do not win this year, had a better time than when I did. A set outdoors to a full house, and in the middle of a song that took a year to craft and finish the honey truck pulls up, big diesel rumbling, to the row of port-o-lets stage left. The noise triples as the pump motor kicks in, so I set a driving rhythm to the beat of the compressor and make up a running story and song for 10 minutes that has the crowd clapping in tempo and singing the chorus, the universe telling me to write more simply.

Sunday night, a party for the volunteers at Al Johnson's house, a song circle with Cosy Sheridan, TPR & Cary Cooper, Freebo, Tom Kimmel, on the deck outside with Kat Eggleston on guitar, Karen Mal on mandolin, Elizabeth on fiddle, going through every song on "Tea for the Tillerman", just magical. We charge our batteries, top the water and fuel tanks, and head south for Kerrville.