I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken

Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
-Bertrand Russell

What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell

August 14, 2017 - 11:20 a.m.

Falcon Ridge Farewell

Today I finish writing about Falcon Ridge or die in the attempt. If I die scatter my ashes by the Budgiedome. I'm donating my body to the Medical School that Fred teaches at so he can pick them up after the students are done with me and bring them to Falcon Ridge. I'm glad that's all planned out. Now on to Sunday at Falcon Ridge.

I woke up early, ate, showered, and headed down to the Workshop Stage for the 10 AM Stories, Songs, and Tall Tales then went to the Main Stage for the Gospel Wake Up Call. Wait, you believed me? Haven't you ever read my blog before? I went to sleep around 4 AM, maybe later and slept as late as I could. Then I went over to Camp Steeple for coffee, breakfast, and coffee. Did I mention the coffee? Then I went back and forth between Camp Steeple and the Budgiedome hanging out with my friends, eating, and drinking coffee. Most of the year I hardly drink but at Falcon Ridge I start each day with crème in my coffee, Emily's homemade chocolate Irish crème. I have at most two cups and it's mainly coffee. It is so good. Emily is not only my bacon wife but also my chocolate Irish crème wife. I get the bacon and the heavenly nectar and Joe gets the four kids. Seems fair.

On Sunday, we break down the Budgiedome, it also seems to be the day that the Main Stage has the most acts I need to see. This year they were consecutive, David Massengill, Abbie Gardner, and Vishten. I had seen David and Abbie the weekend before at the Common Ground Front Porch Fest but I haven't seen Vishten in years.

My stupid tradition, Sunday is the one day I bring a camp chair to the bullpen on the side of main stage so I don't have to squat on other's chairs. I also spent a lot of time down front taking pictures. I'm usually on my stadium seat there. Sometimes to get a shot I'll crawl someplace else and lay on the grass for a shot. That's when people on the stage choose to take my picture.

Scott took that one on Friday; he was one of the judges of the Emerging Artist Showcase.

The members of Vishten are French Canadian and I always thought Quebecois, they are not. Looking in the Falcon Ridge Program I discovered that two are from Prince Edward Island and one from Magdalen Islands. The music is Celtic with a kinship with that of Cape Breton Island. There is something in the Maritime Provinces culture that makes musicians thrive.

After Vishten I picked up my chairs, bought some iced coffee, talked to the people I ran into on the Midway, then headed back up the hill to break down the Budgiedome. One problem, there was no Budgiedome. It had been taken down in my absence. I didn't feel guilty, I said I'd be back to break down the dome after Vishten. I just lied, of course I felt guilty. I helped pick up the pieces and load the truck. I then insisted on helping them break down one of the peaks at Camp Steeple. Hey, I could have drowned my guilt in chocolate Irish Crème.

Bri, Craig, and Neal aka Matt, had headed home earlier. Abby and her friends left soon after I got back to camp. Paul and Sarah headed out after everything was packed on the truck. That took several hours. I had many heartfelt farewells.

Sunday night at Falcon Ridge is the perfect way to wind down. Fred and I were all that was left of the Budgiedome so we hung out with the remains of Camp Steeple. We sat around the literal campfire and made music. It was cold. We needed the fire. We were joined by Falcon Ridge Stragglers we didn't know. That's part of what's nice. There's a separate community of those that stay the extra night. Fred and I went to bed while others were still up singing. That's rare from me; I have a severe case of FOMO. I wanted to wake up around the same time as Fred as he was my ride home. That didn't work out as I had tummy issues a bit before dawn and lost over an hour of sleep. I didn't do too badly. I broke down my tent and loaded the car. I grabbed some bacon and the end of the coffee from Camp Steeple. I spent more time saying goodbye to my friends. We managed to get this picture of us all by the iiiiiiice truck

Photo by Jim Gorss's even though he's in the picture; it's magic.

That picture captures a big part of my Falcon Ridge Experience.

Fred and I then headed out. We stopped in town at the O's Diner for a full breakfast and a bathroom with running water. The latter is an important part of every Falcon Ridge. As much as I love it the bathroom and sanitary facilities leave much to be desired. We managed to find our way back to my home without getting lost. After I unloaded and Fred drove off I made my way to the apartment. Jane and Bernie were not home. There was now a race as to what craving to fulfill. I went for computer, shower, Game of Thrones, computer. There was a nap or two thrown in there.

I still have some pictures to edit and then I'll be finished with Falcon Ridge for this year. It's the best five days of the year. In the week since I only heard live music once. I'm going to start up again tonight. I wasn't taking a break, there just wasn't that much I wanted to hear. My plans for this week are:

Monday - Sam Reider followed by Jean Rohe and the End of the World Show
Thursday - Robinson & Rohe with James Shipp & Stephanie Coleman
Saturday - No Fuss and Feathers
Sunday - Folk Fights Back

I signed the Pro-Truth Pledge:
please hold me accountable.

Memories: Not that Horrid Song - May 29, 2018
Wise Madness is Now In Session - May 28, 2018
The NFL and the First Amendment - May 27, 2018
On The Road Again - May 26, 2018
Oliver the Three-Eyed Crow - May 25, 2018

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Horvendile August 14, 2017
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