Erin Here ~~ Let's see, Where did we leave off last....hmmm...so much has happened. End of Wales...Playing at the Monmouth Festival has seriously got to be one of the most amazing, challenging and surreal experiences in my life. I have played/performed before in front of, say, a couple hundred on election night 2008...but...playing in front of a few thousand is pretty awe inspiring. I had to really focus on enjoying myself, the band and experiencing the songs (every friggen time...I swear...I play Jordon, I think of Jordon intensely...I play Amsterdam, I visualize Amsterdam...I re-live every moment inside every song to the best of my concentration and ability) and not just kinda gaping at all the people staring at me and tripping out that little 'ol me from Westport, California is playing the songs I most likely wrote in front of my cat in an apartment in SF in front of all these Welsh people out there staring at me.
My dear Ryan came to Wales and joined me for the rest of the trip and it has been so nice to see his warm face. Ireland was beautiful and moving and full of magic. Staying with relatives for the first 2 nights in Dublin was so cozy and fun...then a pub crawl through Dublin with one of my cousins, Malcom...then an escape to the countryside with Ryan where we saw more precious relatives (it is so touching...and honestly a little sad to connect with these people...some in their 80's...then leave...hoping to come back soon...before...well, they cackle and laugh and hug me and say they might not see me again because they have a foot in the grave while I get teary eyed...lets put it that way...they are much more realistic)...
We traveled through Cahir, Doolan (actually staying in Lisdoonvarna-outside of Doolan and MUCH radder...the matchmaking capitol of Ireland...so up my alley), and finally Gallway where I played a last show surprisingly on the main stage (rad), opening for yet another pompous covers band at 11:30 pm (not that rad... why are cover bands the rock stars of Europe?)...but gleefully escaping the noise with Ryan after to a dark, romantic, stone masonry little wine bar for a rose and pear tart at 2am...whats better than that?
Oh the food. I'ts all local, fresh, and oh-so-delicious! We ate mussels with baby crabs still in them (Ok that was pretty hardcore and I think that might have made my tummy a little upset), oysters, crab, smoked salmon, brown bread, brown bread, brown bread, creamy, salty, pure butter, tea, cream, cheese and onion crisps, the BEST fried potatoes from the Shamrock Lounge (owned by distant cousins), salted and bursting with flavor so complex they needed nothing else on them... and the people...it takes a while to get used to the honest, sincere good intentions of the people I have met. No motives...no hustle...just sweetness (except for the slagging, but that's pretty funny too and meant in all affection...I was really honored when a cousin Patsy after I gave her a CD said "Well, if I don't get in touch with you after listening to this, you'll know why" tee hee)... it will stay with me forever. This trip has been so amazing, on so many levels... thanks to all of you for your love and support, and we'll be home in SF so very soon...love you all, and we can't wait to see your smiling faces once again. :-)