Back from my long journey. Ah, home! I had a wonderful trip, my first ever foray into the South. The Blue Ridge rocks! Virginia rocks! North Carolina is now my official home away from home. I was quite captivated. The people are way friendly, and there is an ease and a gentleness among them that is not so common up here in the Northeast.
Then there was Merlefest. No, Swapblog fellows, I did not get Gillian Welch's autograph, but I saw her act on three seperate stages this weekend. She kind of swept through the festival like a whirlwind. Her recordings simply don't even come close to doing her justice. The same can be said for Chris Thile and Nickel Creek. But the great thing about Merlefest was not any one performer or group, but the opportunity to simply soak in the music. I come away with the conviction that I really do need to make music and singing more a part of my life again.
The best "Southernism" I heard all week might have been in church on Sunday morning. Laurie, Nate and I attended a Morningstar church in Wilkesboro. The pastor there interrupted his message for a moment to say, "Y'all lookin' at me like a cow at a new gate!" Hmmm, us city-folk can only surmise what that must be like.
Finally, I want to send out special thanks to some gracious folks that I met up with on my journey. First of all, Milton and family. Thanks so much for your kindness toward us on the way down. It was a pleasure to meet you, Milton, and don't forget that proposal I made to you.
Then there was Curt and Julie. I believe I have made some good friends in you folks. And also Chet and Irene. You two are awesome! And by the way, Chet (who has been a reader of mine here), don't you think it's time for you to start blogging? And let me not forget Randy--you are a real sweetheart. Keep on keepin' on, brother!
That's all for now. I will have more to say about the "spiritual" aspects of this journey in the coming days (I hope).
UPDATE: Other bloggers reporting on Merlefest:
Bear Witness . . .