I call Lynn once or twice a day from the phone in the hotel lobby. I email her when I walk over to the Pizza Foundation for lunch, or from the Book Company late in the afternoon when I stop in for a glass of wine after filling my eyes and heart with artwork. I tell her about the people that I'm meeting and talking to and she laughs. "You?" she says. "Shy guy? When did you get so chatty?..."
Apparently, there's something irresistable about a guy with a notebook. I'll be sitting by myself, thinking, writing a bit. Eventually, it becomes too much for somebody and they've got to ask and find out what's going on. Last night, I was in the courtyard, after dinner. I was listening to Jim Keaveny, sipping my wine, making notes. A pretty young woman comes up -- "We see you've got some wine left, and we're just sitting listening. We'd be happy to have you join us." She gestured over her shoulder to the table where her husband was sitting. Startled, I said, "Thank you, thank you -- I might do that..." She's got a grin that blossoms, and walked back to her table.
It'd've been impolite not to go, so I packed up the notebook and grabbed my wine and headed over. And once again, as seems to have happened so many times on this journey, I found myself in conversation with interesting, bright and curious people. We talked about the music, about writing and language and art, about what a splendid evening it was sitting there in the courtyard under the big Texas sky. We told stories and talked about dreams and aspirations and where we've been and where we thought we might be going. I gave 'em the address of the blog, so maybe they'll say hello... At any rate, I want to tell 'em I'm grateful for the invite and happy to have met them.
Finally, I excused myself to go and call Tambourine Grrl, who was engrossed in a movie, so we just talked for two minutes. I walked up to Ray's Bar (which you recognize by the sign over the door that says "Joe's Place".) The band was already done (what is it with these little Texas towns that close up at midnight?), so I had a beer and listened to the conversation and strolled back to the hotel.
And there were Jim and Erik, just finishing packing up their gear. I told 'em Ray's appeared to be closing, so we came up to my suite to sip whiskey and talk. More great conversation. Jim talked about his songwriting, some of the things he hoped to do, some stories about where he'd been. Erik talked about everything. Jim and I agreed that it'd be fun someday to trade songs, but that our egos'd get in the way of actually trying to play together. I understood completely. How is it that out here under the big Texas sky, it seems so easy to run into a like mind?
So goodbye to Marfa for now, although I'll carry a lot of it with me. I'm heading to New Mexico mountains to spend the night in a tent. I'll listen to Jim's CDs on the road. I came out here to see what kind of creation Donald Judd had found in the west Texas wilderness -- I'll bring that along with me... and much more...