For a colorblind man, packing for a trip is generally a wild guessing game resulting in a conglomeration of clashing pastels and oddly patterned button up nightmares. Lucky for me, there's no real shower to speak of a the Something in the Water Festival at the White Wolf Trading Post in Regency, Texas.
But there is a river. And snakes. And some of the most down to earth folks in Texas.
Since a change of clothes was optional, it didn't take long to load up the van. For this particular little jaunt to the Lone Star State, we traveled with guitars, a tent, sleeping bags, a few guitars, harps, cables, tuners, picks, strings, things, etc., not to mention two singer/songwriters, a harp player, and my sister. The joke gets better.
Straight line winds made it tough to navigate as Dan the Damn Quails Van was constantly being shoved towards the median like a big white brick cruising down the highway. However, hats off to GMC for a van that rides like a big comfy boat on still water. (Heh...Stillwater) The Safari is the pinnacle of the 1993 Passenger Vans, and even still has ashtrays for smoking convenience. And it's got red shag, which makes me feel like I'm driving a mobile 70's porno set that's rocketing towards Texas. We got lost in a shady part of Fort Worth trying to find the 377 South loop and ended up passing what appeared to be a crack junky in the middle of a great binge wearing a black leather poncho, carrying an assortment of sticks into a condemned apartment complex and smiling like he'd just been saved. Then there was a wrong turn at the Japanese Festival!!! and a mere 5 hours later, we were more or less isolated in the glory of Regency, Texas.
It was 30 minutes to the nearest anything and a true sight to behold. Regency is home to one of the oldest and only wooden suspension bridges left in Texas. It was mostly raised by hand nearly a hundred years ago on top of land that was once home to a slew of Native Americans for centuries before the white man ever set foot south of the Red River. The White Wolf Trading Post is nestled in Regency, Texas and home to Alton and Sue Watson, some of the honest-to-God nicest folks in the history of nice folks. Not to mention the fact that they're both terrific musicians and songwriters and more hospitable than a hospital...by far.
Regency Routine (or, The Gospel According to Regency)
Wake up (if you've been to bed) to a Texas Sunsise
Saunter (or stumble) to the trading post and say hey to the folks that are still up.
Pour a cup of coffee, a bloody mary, and eat some eggs and sausage.
We got the pleasure of watching some of our longtime favorite songwriters as well as a host of new friends. Skinner rocked it, as per usual. Susan Herndon is always a pleasure to watch, especially when she's swapping songs with Tiny. The Real Bill Williams was much better than the fake. Alton and Sue sound like a couple that's been singing together for more years than I've been alive. Shelly Phelps and John Randolph are always amazing, and Joel Melton is as crazy as ever in sobriety and sounding as good as I've ever heard.
All in all, another successful trip to Texas for a band that's on the way to doing a whole lot more gigs where the stars and bright and whatnot. If you're in Fort Worth, hit up Spencer's Corner on a Monday night for our good buddy Mike McClure's Monday Night of Manly Musicianship. We'll be back there soon. And if you're in San Saba County, go to the White Wolf Trading Post and talk to Alton and Sue for a while. It can change your entire perspective. Until next time, folks. See you at the show.