So it was that time of year again when I made a trip over to England with Sarah Savoy and the Francadiens on their summer tour. Last year’s vistits wre pretty short though they envolved quite a lot of hopping around but this year was 11 days straight of concerts and a few days of driving between. This was the longest trip I had ever been on with them. We had a jam-packed schedule to fit everything in but I got to see some pretty amazing parts of England.
As you know I’ve seen London twice now so I quick walk around Cambridge market was just fine by me. Having had my fill last time I was there. (a funny story that I forgot to tell, once again involving me chasing down a bus… I see a pattern here). After a quick night in London we went to Bristol, Birmingham, and the came our travel up to Wales. Our first stop was Shrewsbury, still straddling the English part of the country but right outside of that city the road signs became sort of fuzzy and hard to read. In what seems to be the middle of a country, everything changed languages. The names of the cities were unpronounceable and if you could read them there was no way you would get the actual phonetics of the words out from the autograph The town we were going to was Llangollen pronounced sort-of like rrkangrrkanlawn (and yes rrk is in fact the sound that you make in the back of your throat when you are trying to craché something). Wow we were practicing that for a bit and reminding ourselves that we were no longer in fact in England but in WALES a mistake not to be made unless one wishes to be sneered at an taunted by locals.
We stayed at this festival for four days and were housed up a big mountain-side far away from civilization and surrounded by sheep. The bunkhouse we stayed in had a wonderful kitchen so we (the group) enjoyed some great meals together making this the best we have ever eaten in England. Thank goodness because 11 days on festival food is no fun at all. The Welch countryside was amazing. I did my Yoga outside despite the VERY quickly changing weather that had fits of rain and then perfect sunshine every 10 minutes. And the view was AMAZING.
After a few days of driving up and down the mountain ( most of the time just cruising in neutral in some death-plummet to the bottom) we were off to some other city I can’t pronounce but this time at the coast with BEAUTIFUL jagged cliffs and endless sea horizons. There we were hosted a house party at our friend’s who had welcomed my mom and her band also a few years ago. We had a jam that also included at one point a guy on his sax, Cajun music sung in Welch, Irish tunes (and my dancing), and all the other fun things that are product of jam sessions with such interesting people.
Our adventures continued to Biddulph (blessyou) for Folk in the Park: an empty horse filed with a stage at the start. I guess I felt pretty much at home with that. We stayed at a great B&B, I had a princess room.
Our last day of touring included a rush between a circus act and street performer ridden festival in Peterborough and an awesome last gig in Cambridge.
We made a great big circle of England and I was so exhausted and so ready to get back to Paris. But what a great time it was and I look forward to doing it again next year.