Sunday, July 23, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 07/22/17: Show Preparations, Reunion with Jane Hansen, Elation at the WOW Hall

1. Coffee and bagel at Theo's. Dropped off the Deke at the spa. Took a nostalgic automobile tour of Eugene. Picked up the Deke and we went to the Falling Sky deli and split a glorious Beef Brisket Pastrami sandwich, Reubenized. A quick trip to Fred Meyer and back to the condo for a nap -- all this in preparation for tonight's Babes with Axes show.

2. I met Jane Hansen, whom I have known since our days at North Idaho College back in 1972-74, at her room down at the Inn at Fifth Street and we started to get caught up before strolling over to Pure for a bento box and a variety of fresh, tasty sushi. Jane and I had so much to talk about and continued our conversation as we walked to the WOW Hall to experience tonight's Babes with Axes show.

3. The Babes of Axes show enthralled the joyful crowd at the WOW Hall. I was in a state of ecstasy throughout the show, not only savoring the Babes with Axes' splendid writing, stunning versatility, tight and gorgeous harmonies, and invigorating musicianship, but also letting their songs transport me to memories of performances I loved in the past, beginning with having been at their first concert in late 1993, nearly four years before the Deke and I started spending time together and married each other. I remembered being many times at the WOW Hall -- they performed an especially memorable show about a month into my recovery from bacterial meningitis in 1999. I remembered the April 15th, 1998 Babes with Taxes show at Sam Bond's; I time traveled to the Wild Duck, the Willamette Folk Festival, a park in NW Portland, Petersen Barn, Westmoreland Park, the Rainy Day Cafe, the Corvallis Folk Festival and elsewhere.

Over the years, their songs have taken residence somewhere deep inside me. They hibernate. On nights like tonight those songs and the feelings and memories associated with them awaken.  I move into a realm of joy where I feel everything more deeply, a realm unique to hearing the Babes with Axes perform.

The experience I had at this show within myself was deepened by experiencing the collective joy in the WOW Hall.  It's nearly spiritual the way the Babes with Axes bring so much happiness to a room -- as the hall emptied, not only were people beaming, they were embracing one another, gathering in knots of excitement, relishing tonight's show.

Jane Hansen and I walked back to Fifth Street together and had a quiet drink at Le Bar.

I strolled though the swell of revelers partying on Broadway in downtown Eugene. They were throbbing with ecstasy and desire in a world of booze and drugs and loud music in a sphere quite apart from the vitality I was experiencing having spent time with Jane and having spent the evening elated by tonight's Babes with Axes show.

And, then, back at the condo, Molly had arrived and Patrick was there. Thanks to a flight cancellation earlier in the day, Molly missed the show, a huge disappointment, but her dismay seemed offset by being back in Eugene with her brother and parents, anticipating a few days of vacation hanging out and seeing some great friends back in her hometown.

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