Northern Germany

Into Northern Germany we went. A short four hour drive from the Netherlands, and you’re in another country altogether! Now that’s efficiency, folks.

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Striking a very striking pose.

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Currywurst!  Quite good.

IMG_8994Sunning ourselves on the Baltic Sea…

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Berliners!

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Remnants of the Berlin Wall.

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Near Brandenburg Gate a pair of Americans were seen.

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Repurposed Birdhouse.

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What fancy building?

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Ye olde radio tower.

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Fields aplenty in Northern Germany!

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Sunset over the Baltic as seen from Rugen Island National Park.

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Stralsund, UNESCO World Heritage Site.  IMG_9066

Exquisite brickwork.

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This building dates back to the 1500s.  Old timey.

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Sunset from Eckernforde.

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Kiel Week!  We just missed it.

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Beautiful work of art boat.

IMG_8945 IMG_8941 Ok!  Back to the states we’ve gots to go!  See you there, friends.  🙂

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Netherlands in June (Pt. 2)

When last we left our two heroes, the Netherlands was happening to them.  Now, it’s time for them to happen to the Netherlands!  How is that even a pair of sentences?

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First things first.  Master Carillonneur Boudewijn Zwart played our song “Slippery Slope” for all of Amsterdam in the bell tower of one of the city’s oldest churches!

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Playing a song transcribed to sheet music by Basho!  Quite surreal.

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View of the city from the ledge.

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I hear ya, bud!

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OG Amsterdam.  Pre-OG, perhaps…carbon data is pending on this.

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The massive infrastructure of the belltower.  Breathtaking engineering!

Off to the Rijks Museum!

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A live art performance greeted us on the way into the building.

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Life-size Rembrandts awaited us inside.

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Trying to convince all of Holland that 21st Century Lederhosen is the new style!!

And so, there was a ton of artwork seen, hordes of tourists waded through, and partridge family in a pear tree.  Enough about that already.

Of course, it should be noted that we were indeed performing almost every night during this time!

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A walk in the marsh lands outside of Amsterdam.

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Swaying in the gentle breeze, a Choochie.

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Sheep and irises.  Sheep and irises.  Same ol’ same ol’… 😉

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What?! Another bike ride in the scenic countryside!?

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Happy happy joy joy.

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Learning to smoke eel from the master himself.

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Talented balloon artist Simon Jong made a Basho Balloon Sculpture!  Most impressive, don’t you think!?

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Welcome to Oosterleek!  We’ll be your tour guides for the afternoon.

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This here’s your standard windmill shot in the Dutch farm country.

Maine in May

To Maine!

But first, to Niagara Falls, New York!  We had a great little visit with this powerful force of waterfalls in upstate New York.  Note, objects in pictures are closer than they appear.

IMG_8050Those buildings on the Canada side were practically stepping on our feet, for instance.

IMG_8053 IMG_8054Tiny stairs leading into a tiny pool of tiny water.  What a small geological attraction!

On the way back from the falls, the Cloud King stumbled and fell.  Ouch!

Cloud King Breakdown BuffaloWhat’s a little alternator between friends, anyway?  We were back on the road within 18 hours of this mishap!

IMG_8061The Berkshires of western Massachusetts.  The beginning of rainy days in New England.

IMG_8075We managed to find some sun, regardless!

IMG_8103And had ourselves a little photoshoot picnic in the Maine woods.

IMG_8139Pretty lady. 🙂

A few days later, we ventured onto a friend’s farm for some much-needed horse time.

IMG_8239Owning 300 acres in central Maine has its perks, and a twenty-fice horse herd is but one of them. 😉

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Icelandics and Morgans pictured here.  IMG_8316

Happy happy happy!

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Here is Deb, one of the owners of said farm.  She and Trudy her partner are great!

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Josephine the French Bulldog gets to know her friends.

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Farm girl. riding in the truck bed.

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Some homeless dude we picked up on the way back.

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The 150+ year old family farmhouse.

We’re ready for the Nederlands and Germany!  Blasting off across the pond in just a few short days now!  See you on the other side… 🙂

Mines of Spain and Root Beer!

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This fish was about a mile from the nearest body of water.  On the next Unsolved Mysteries.

DSCF2731We visited the Mines of Spain, deceptively located outside Dubuque, Iowa somehow.  Here we see brave J. Elmo Rawling inspecting some of the stonework.

DSCF2742After conquering the chapel, we leapt for joy.  Note young Max’s perfect leaping form.

DSCF2791An old quarry where bluffs used to be.

DSCF2710Bird watching or defending a fort?  We may never know…

DSCF2774The Rawling and Wulff clans pose for a band photo.  Very graceful!

DSCF2720Chooch and Bev pose in front of the plank things.  This picture was taken right before Chooch put the bunny ears up.

DSCF2756Long legs mcgee.

DSCF2816Bluffertons.

DSCF2852After that it was off to the prom!  We were all very excited to be a part of Galena’s High School prom later in the day.  Very.

DSCF2836Some elderly boy scouts passed by while we were loitering.  No big deal.

DSCF2842Pasta family reflections.

DSCF2864All of a sudden, it was root beer time again!  Happy days, folks. Happy days.

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More soon!  We’re pushing further east now toward New England and beyond!!  Beyond I tell you!

Mid West Music Fest!

Hi Dear Friends,

After a lovely tour send-off show in Portland, OR. we pushed back out onto the road.

Make it Rain!

Make it Rain!

Cully Barn Show

Great crowd for a garage show!  :)

Great crowd for a garage show! 🙂

 

First stop is Winona, MN for the Mid West Music Fest 2013.

We visited our good friends Sarah Joy and Daniel for a little farm time in Houston County.

Sarah and Daniel's slice of paradise.

Sarah and Daniel’s slice of paradise.

Ornaments.

Ornaments.

 

November in the Northwoods

行く春や
鳥啼き魚の
目は泪

“Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home.”   – Matsuo Basho c. 1674

Hullo friendly internet faces,

For shame!  How could I’ve let the blog go for an entire month!  What with shows and thanksgivings feastings, two hour blocks on the internet have been fewer and farther between than I’d’ve facebook liked.  Nevertheless, onward we go into the great wide open space of the future.

Halloween of 2012 took place for us in Platteville, Wisconnie.  Two sickly apparitions floated in from Maine with terrible head colds, achy bones, and weak whip o wills to stay outside for any length of time.

Purple sprite faerie queen.

Slow cowpoke cookin’.

Road-weary and eyes still bleary with cough syruped inquiry, we traveled up to Fargo, North Dakota for a show at the Spirit Room.  See below for details.

Warming up for the show…

Physical discomfort aside, we had a great show, packed the house, and made many new friends.  The Listening Room is wonderful!  Back, back to Minnesota we trudged.  One Cloud King in hand is worth two…um, yep.

 

And sew the sunset the table again and again.

Menomonie, DePere, Sturgeon Bay, Manitowoc… all in a dream of shows and new places to shower.  Occasionally we’d punctuate an appearance with radio performances.

WORT fm radio in Madison with Jim Schwall.

The road is more hilly than perception would normally lead you to believe.  Along the way, we’ve experienced places considered by most to be outta the way.  Would ya just look at those rocks!  Look at them!

Whitefish Dunes State Park near Sturgeon Bay, WI.

Chooch looked at the rocks, and then out onto the Lake Michigan she loves.

Well hello again.

Plenty to see folks here, please don’t move.  Buffleheads and Snow Buntings, mostly.

Ft. Atkinson, Madison, Milwaukee, it’s all the same street, right Mr. Garcia?

Just keep truckin’ ooooooooooooooooon.

We’re headed back west to Colorado for five shows in early December, everybody!  A return to Portland, Oregon is imminent however!  We’ll be on the west coast by December 15th, Cloud King abiding…

Maine, the way life oughta have been

Friends, fiends, foiblefolks,

When traveling from Portland, Oregon, it seems to us lower 48thians that Portland, Maine is about as far as it gets, continentally and longitudinally speaking.  Our drive from Cleveland, OH to Winthrop, ME was full of fall’s splendor.

Fallallallalla
The bekshiz (Berkshires)

And with the speed of a scrolling laptop mouse ball, we’re in Maine!  Ah, wondrous internets.

The Cloud King rests in front of Basho’s Mom’s place. (not a single family dwelling)

Lake Maranacook, about a block away…

Ah yes.

Our radio interview with WERU-fm went swimmingly well.

WE-R-U!

After WERU, we ventured to Acadia National Park for a little sight-seeing in the dense fog.
Cadillac Mtn never looked so mysterious!

Is he? No, they wouldn’t post that…

One blustery but clear day, we decided to take a little hike and go-seek an old abandoned firetower.

Hold me for warmth, dear heart!

What a pleasant stay!  We played a couple really nice packed-house shows, both in great settings.  Below is the art gallery show setting in Gardiner, Maine, at Karen Adrienne’s lovely space, about an hour before the concert started.

Circling the Square Art Print & Press
View within a room.