I awoke to the sounds of tent zippers and prairie grasses being matted down by the feet of a friend who has become one of my greatest confidants and companions.
We are the in the West! We are amongst the mountains; the history and stories of them-the pride that their residents have, the wonder of their magnificent beauty. There are pines and trees that stay forever green, canyons of painted matte colours, and vast plains where you "can see for miles miles miles" (Holocene, Bon Iver).
If you have never experienced the feeling of believing that you can drive over a hill and right into the sky, I highly suggest you take a drive out this way, perhaps catch up with us in Portland or Langlois, OR? We're on our journey, Betwixt and Between, whatever that means...
We've had opportunities to talk travel with some folks we've met, our adventure plan arouses varying emotions in different people; I think there can be jealousy, misunderstanding, and confusion about what we're doing...but mostly there is nostalgia, encouragement, and advice that pours from the mouths of those we encounter. People like to help.
We've visited the brewery and coop of North Dakota, and were quite impressed. Carl got a wonderful ham sandwich that was very much needed, and said
"Sometimes, you just need a ham sandwich" and guess what?! His wishes were granted ten-fold! After a detour stop to see Selma Sue-the world's largest cow statue (we also soaked in the views atop the plains) we made our way to Beulah, late for dinner, but Slinger's family still opened up their doors wide for us. We were greeted with ham, corn & green chiles from the garden, scallop potatoes of some sort, Bread! and poppyseed salad. It was marvelous.
After hearing snapshots of his family's life, what we could gather in the short time frame, we headed down to the new Riverside park, to find monkey bars and go frolfing. We were able to see a spot called "Shannon's Place" a location near peaceful waters that was dedicated to a fellow that Slinger knew in high school, who passed away from a heart condition. It was a beautiful memorial, and a location that has begun some of Slinger's songs. It's always neat to attempt to experience someone else's experience.
We didn't find monkey bars, but we did find a zipline!
(Incerpt; yes I know incerpt isn't a word, but I made up this word as an antonym to 'excerpt' I have a beautiful blue-eyed husky looking up at me through my armpit hole. I must give Mercury! the Destroyer a bit of attention for a moment)
I really wanted to let y'all know about a magickal place that we visited, now deemed "Nameless Studios" after some deliberation with Daniel. We spent the evening in this garage space, complete with lights, smoke and any instrument you wanted. Carlisle rocked out on organ, and I got to be behind a gigantic drumkit, one that gave you a full-body workout if you wanted to spin around and bang on the multiple floor toms. Not to mention the many splash cymbals that I got to crash. We got to record this song of Slinger's
So here we are, now in Bozeman, MT. Carlisle is off doing something on his own, and I am in Townshend Tea shop, enjoying one of the finest and fruitiest Oolongs that I've had the pleasure of sipping. "Like the Dawn" by the Oh Hello's was playing the moment my eyes kissed the mountains. Carlisle let out an audible 'whoop' of joy and banged the dashboard, I could only be silent, unable to even express my astonishment. I welcome it with open arms. We're getting a few open mics under our belts before an exciting house show near Missoula tomorrow evening.
I realized my bolts were a bity rusty, seeing that I haven't been playing my songs manually for a few weeks~~ we have been in the studio digitizing everything, and it seems to almost drain the emotion from things...But we're back at it-
on the road,
where many of these tunes were born.