Sunday, June 30, 2013

On My Own, But With Mifi

Last weekend, on our way back from a gospel show, we received some sad news that Michael's father had passed away. Jim was always such a great supporter of our crazy bus-adventure and will be greatly missed. I only wish the kids had had more opportunity to get to know him.

Since we received the news it has been a bit of a whirlwind of activity while we tried to figure out how we were going to get Michael out to Colorado to visit his family and attend any memorial that may be planned. Having us all go was almost immediately ruled out. Even if we could afford it, the logistics of where to park the bus so the instruments are secure, and where to put the cat, just made it impossible. So, a solo trip was planned. We have some very challenging shows coming up and we headed into our "week out" for the Thousand Trails parks, meaning we had to move the bus. I am a rather big wimp over driving the bus. I will now do it on the highway, but driving through cities or tight county roads makes me squeamish, so we had to figure around that as well.

Michael decided to give me extra practice in hopes that I could move to the next RV on Wednesday, without him. I probably could do it, but the added stress was something I really hoped to avoid. Thankfully, my parents fly free and have many points available for hotels, so they offered to come out so my dad could drive the bus and help us get moved. I'll pick them up Wednesday morning, they will spend the day with us, including the park change, and then I'll drive them back tot he airport Thursday. I will pick Michael up on Friday afternoon, then we'll rush back to play a 3 hour show, get to bed, move the bus to the next park, and play another show the following evening, and the next afternoon. After that we'll get a very well needed mini-break! We just have to get through this week.

 Despite the intensity of this last week, we did get a small moment to catch our breath at a lovely park in Wilmington, OH. I just love the Ohio area. Well, except for the bugs. We have some kids sporting spider bites and way too many mosquito bites. That's one of the main areas where Colorado will forever be superior. Fewer BUGS!

This lovely bridge was on a nature trail at the park. We always made Michael walk across it first to clear off all of the webs that would form across it daily. Ew, ew, ew. Every pretty, once it is spider web free.
 After the last month of trying to conduct business without wifi we finally had it. I had many things I wished to accomplish, including that book I still swear I want to write someday, articles for my new website that hasn't been updated in over 2 months, communication with venues, searching for booking opportunities, web site updates and more. The last few months it has been nearly impossible to get sufficient work complete because you can only sit at McDonalds for so  long, and the park wifi was almost unusable, it was so slow. We finally gave in and realized something had to be done, even if it technically wasn't in the budget. ("Technically?" No. Totally not in the budget, but we're going to jam it in there!) In order to try to counter some of the cost for a personal Mifi, we set to the streets of Cincinnati to busk! They have a great farmer's market downtown that hosts open entertainment. You just sign up for a spot and agree to play there for no more than 90 minutes, moving to another spot at that point.

We made most of our start-up goal for the mifi, despite almost having to throw in the towel early. Alex was feeling quite sick, likely from the 90+ degree heat in the heavy humidity, and busking locations that were only available in the direct sun.We found her a chair, played everything that didn't require much from the guitarist, and still managed to fill the jar enough to justify the order. Now to just get enough to pay the monthly charge. We need a sign and a new motto. Will Busk for Mifi. Or, Will Busk in Reasonable Weather and In the Shade. That's probably a better plan.

So, here I now sit, with Mifi, but no Michael. It's probably the best park at which one could hope to get stranded with children. Despite afternoon storms, the weather has been lovely so the kids have enjoyed the many playgrounds and the swim beach. Tomorrow we'll get them a paddle car to ride around in the park, a thank-you gift from the activity director for their hard work at the show last night, and Mary gets to do a painting activity from their Busy Barn this week too. I love this park!

Mary is feeling better, so I'm sleeping better, but I have her off of so many harder to digest, possible allergen related foods, that I do feel like I'm trying to spice air sometimes. In between learning to do that and playing single parent, (thankfully one with teenagers), I am going to start working to justify purchasing that mifi. We have a new song with a new "style" we're working on and we love, love, love it! (Oh, how I hope we do find a way to fund the next CD. I sure want to show it to everyone!) I'm anxious to create more, and I have many articles I want to write if I can find a quiet moment. That may have to wait until next week, but it is nice that the difficulties of the last month have somehow managed to inspire instead of leaving us feeling defeated. Perhaps we've been given an extra dose of Grace this last month. We sure could use it this next week and always appreciate the prayers from others that keep us going.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I'm so sorry for your loss. Please pass our condolences on to your husband and his side of the family. My husband lost both parents last year, and it is a difficult thing to go through, even for a grown man. :-(

    Congrats on the mifi! You are a step ahead of us. We still need to get ours. Hopefully by the end of the summer.

    Karen in San Antonio