We made it! Made a mad dash for the finish line, had plenty
landed in Oakdale around six o'clock!
Played and are saying at Sierra Sky Ranch, in the Branding
Iron Restaurant and Saloon, what a perfect landing spot
for road weary travelers.
Started the day off in the St. George, a step back in
time, gonna go back and play there on our way back to
civilization that is, if can force ourselves back into
that kind of groove. Played for the kids at Pioneer School,
man what a nice bunch of second and third graders, were
very receptive and respectful, and gave us the most sincere
hugs we've gotten in a long time. Found our mugs plastered
on the front page of the Datebook section of the Chronicle,
sure would have been great to have that from the beginning,
would have made the sales job-getting gigs, verifying
and explaining mission-easier. Anyway, with a good stash
of cash on hand and plenty of energy, we blasted for Oakdale,
passed through Jackson, San Andreas, Angel's Camp, Columbia,
Sonora, Jamestown, up over the ridge to Mariposa and across
the line for a photo finish.
What can I say? These trips have a profound effect on
me, I have the ultimate respect for my compadres, their
willingness to take on a challenge such as this, for such
an important cause, and to be good humored, always professional,
and only mildly mutinous-which is the code of the sideman.
For the people who took a chance and let us play without
knowing what we sounded like, to give generously, and
support us, to call in their personal networks to help
out and take part. This is what I wanted to know: if this
was still a part of the fabric of our culture, and it
is, regardless of how isolated and insulated it seems
at times. It has changed my feeling about my fellow inhabitants
of the planet, and endowed me with a deep appreciation
for them. As PintoPammy says, "better than TV!"
I only hope that those of you out there will be encouraged
to support this kind of thing with your help and pledges.
We need you in order to continue to do this, and I have
found that these voyages do engage kids-even ones on Social
Security-and show them how music brings people together
and offers experience that enriches lives. Stay tuned for
our next "Adventure in Music" (could be El Camino
Real, Hiway 1, Lincoln Highway, Lewis and Clark Northwest
Voyage, lunar?) and until then, "we'll see you in our