One week ago, we woke in the cabin on the mountain to find that we had no electricity. Making a call to Sam Weaver, we learned that the power outage was all over the mountain (and not just our own headache). According to the clock in the kitchen, the power went out at about 6:30am, and was finally returned about four hours later. In the meantime, we went about the usual routine of building up the fires in the two main stoves, and began the added challenge of packing up the last of our things for our trip down the mountain and reinstalling ourselves in our RV.
To be fair, we were not up at 6:30 in the morning. In fact, we had slept in a bit, after bingeing on the entire Season 4 of Downton Abbey (thanks to our room-mate, Trey, who had acquired it from a local library and left it for us). Friday evening had been a restful evening of nibbling on leftovers, drinking tea, and watching British drama. When we finally woke on Saturday morning, there was about half a dozen inches of new powder, a significant drop in the temperature (below zero), and, of course, the loss of electricity.
One of the casualties of our last load into the car was Pony’s orchid. It took us close to thirty minutes to make that last walk with a few final items to load in, and half an hour in zero-degree weather (with wind making it worse), was too much for the little plant.
By the time we got to the town of Casper, a time and temp sign on a fast food place informed us that it was -3 degrees. We took possession of our RV, moved it into the space we’d rented for the night, and loaded in cats, dog, guitars, and the last handful of boxes. After getting stuff put away well enough for travel, we rewarded ourselves with a dinner of good barbecue from a take-out place about a mile from the RV park. You could say that Casper Mountain gave us a proper send-off. Still, all in all, we enjoyed our stay there, and have talked about repeating the experience next year (when I hope to be recording a couple of new projects).
The actual drive on Sunday from Casper to Denver was wonderfully uneventful. Roads were clear, as was the sky, and temperatures were climbing. This last week in Denver, there has been a bit of snow, here and there, but the temperatures have generally been a lot more friendly, as it were. We are back into familiar routines: making tons of phone calls and sending out emails to add more and more dates to the next leg of the tour, alternating with practicing or playing gigs.
Thursday night at Sonoma’z Wine Bar and Grill was very much like coming back home. It’s become a very comfortable place to play. This time around, there was some sort of insurance convention being hosted at the Marriott, and Sonoma’z was packed with people. I noticed several gentlemen, as old as or older than me, accompanied by lovely, significantly younger ladies in the obligatory “little black dress”. Hmmmm. No matter: it was a lively and welcoming crowd.
It’s a weekend of familiar places, with playing last night at Stella’s Coffeehouse (along with Scott Sherman), and playing happy hour at Highland Cork and Coffee today (just preceding singer/songwriter/guitarist, Greg Price). In about a week’s time, give or take, we’ll be heading down the road to Phoenix and parts west. For my friends and fans on the west coast, we’ll be looking forward to catching up with you real soon.