|Ellen Boling's notes from Kerrville Wine & Music|
"That other Ellen" here, as I've just enjoyed reading Blair & Lendell's account of "Big Folk", & I don't yet see any stories of Lil Folk posted for '03......
As a music enabler & "professional listener" my version has it's limitations, but here goes.
This year I exercised my rights as officially "older than Dirt", & we made the trek down from Albuquerque in two days, instead of one killer overnight.
Arriving @ Camp Calm relatively rested - & in daylight!- was a whole new & delightful experience. Even a bit startling, as we got there before Blair -just.
YES, it was fun-
I realized today that we spent almost as much time in the car getting there & back as we did there!
But it was a beautiful drive, & on the way down we saw perhaps a hundred pronghorns, 4 roadrunners, several rabbits, a pheasant family of 5 - & Mars in a VERY clear sky, as we camped @ Bottomless Lake state park, just E. of Roswell. @ about 10pm Wed. eve.
We were among the first to arrive @ Quiet Valley Ranch, greeted by Bill Ward & Sharon as we pulled up under "our" Camp Calm live oak tree - near the elderly wash sink on the edge of the meadow, around midday Thursday. That night was one of the BEST song circles, right there.
Friday started about 7am with some guy hollering from the Threadgill stage area; "He's got ants up his nose!" But EMT response time is VERY impressive @ the Ranch, & now "Toby is recovering from too much fun", we're told.....
The rest was "old home week", at this (now 12-yr-old) festival. We all marveled @ the new cinderblock showers with HOT water. (It was such a religious experience, I had two in one day :-)
HOT SHOWERS! Amazing, wonderful, & true.
And our son Sam discovered that our friend from Tulsa's RV, (up in the "high rent district") had the perfect spot to hook up his laptop :-).
He also discovered that Dana is an engineer & software designer, & they had a lot to talk about - even for 2 introverted guys...... :-) Dana was @ the Camp Calm circle often, & his gorgeous, intricate melody lines stayed in my head underneath most of the rest of the weekend happenings :-). I don't remember ever even making it down to the Friday night main stage - sorry folks.
I know my husband & daughter enjoyed making the rounds of the Meadow song circles until 4 or 5am Sat. morn, but I ENJOYED a nap!
(Insert experiences/stories from others here :-)
Sat. morn, I got to enjoy "Kerrtry Store coffee" & a quiet visit with Vern & Lenore @ Camp Peace of Mind. Good times!
On Sat. afternoon, we enjoyed a jam session on upper Turtle Creek, where I swam with the kids (& TINY frogs), while Daniel held his own in the music circle. And I'm told I just missed a spectacular round of "The Long Black Veil" - one of my all-time old-time favorites. Ah well, it IS one of the world's truly great swimmin' holes :-).
So we had lovely visits- & still made it back to the Festival in time for Steve Frommholz' short set - & Big Earl's BBQ!
For me, one of the best highlights of Kerrville Wine & Music was the 3rd Sat. eve performer -a brief appearance by Steve Frommholz, SLOWLY improving since his stroke in April. He still had us ALL rolling in the aisles. That is one FUNNY man. As he said again, "God Bless Texas Musicians".
It was "all about" visits with dear friends & places - & campfire music! Another pleasure was saying hello to Nancylee Kennedy - except that she is also concerned about Bonnie Hearne's current condition. Us, too.
(Here in N.M, Bill & Bonnie Hearne live in the Santa Fe area. About 6 weeks ago now, Bonnie had a bad fall while out walking her service dog, Odessa. Thinking she had "wrenched" her back, she finally had x-rays done a week or so later - & it was discovered that TWO of her spinal disks are painfully swollen & pressing nerves. Rest & time seem to be the only treatments that help, so far.
This has meant that Bill performs "with friends" - and we all hope for Bonnie to recover soon, as she is sure missed!)
I, also, will leave the music reviews to the pros. We go to "Lil Folk" for the CAMPFIRE song circles - around those clusters of citronella candles :-).
About 2 hours into the Sat.evening shows, we hustled back to zip up the trailer for intermittent all-night showers - & COOL sleeping! Sun. morning, Evie had coffee ready for us all to sit under the Camp Calm "community rain shelter" & contemplate leaving - which we did by noon. (Another highlight was enjoying watching Vern Crawford & Woody Woodward make like Papa Ducks, leading 2 blonde little girls thru the rain & puddles around to visit each campsite on Sunday morning - to take people pictures. Now THERE is a man who loves his digital camera!)
We were sorry to miss Willis Alan Ramsey's set that eve, but he HAD just done a House Concert for us in late July......
Part of our "plan" was to meet Tim Henderson out from Austin for more all-night song rounds this year, & see my Mom Sunday afternoon, but Tim had a cold. My Mom will wait til Christmas, so we returned thru mist & fog over West Texas - amazing! Also counted ELEVEN assorted hawks watching for wet rodent snacks....... beautiful & well worth the trip!
Nice to dry out today.....
See ya'll next year!
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