15) Welcome Home

May 26, 2006

El Milagro: Got in early (5:30 ish) and hooked up and went back to sleep. So, I’m sleeping comfortably and this voice breaks into my sleep: “You need to take you blood pressure medication!” Am I dreaming? My sleepy fuzzy brain is trying to figure this out… cause I’ve been doing fine in the BP department. Then I
hear again, louder, “Do you want to stroke out? You’re going to stroke out and end up in a nursing home… is that what you want?”. The voice is at the back of my head… somewhat familiar. No, it’s behind my head and loud enough to wake me up… and very familiar.

So, I lay there and the voice calms down and moves away… but now I’m awake, with my eyes closed, wondering if I’ll go back to sleep. And, it comes clear as I lay there; its Charlie Moritz doing rounds. Soon he gets to me and kicks my chair. I reply, “Who let you out so early?” He takes little interest in me but the dietician reminds us that my phosphorus is still high and they consider briefly changing my binder before the move on to the next victim.

The rest of the day: After I get back home at about 10:30, I get busy watering the plants and doing all the chores that need doing before we leave for Kerrville, and at some point I get very dizzy and feel nauseous. I have to lie down. DAMN! We are in a hurry to get out of town and I can’t stand up! I lie down and actually go to sleep while Liz picks up 30 watermelons and packs the truck. At about 3 in the afternoon I am finally up and ready to go….. 3 hours later than I wanted to go.

Driving through the hill country down to Kerrville is a trip that takes just about the right amount of time to feel like we’re getting away and yet not long enough to get tired of the drive. The country is green and beautiful with lots of yellow, orange, and purple wild flowers all the way. The blue bonnets didn’t really do well this year, but all else is wildly colourful. We pull into the familiar bustle of Quiet Valley Ranch at about 5
with the watermelons and drop them off at the kitchen and drive back to the staff campground to set up our campsite. I’m still feeling a little weak, but am happy to be “home”, saying “Hi” to festival family people I only see once a year here at the ranch. We quickly set up our campsite and I get our red seating pad and get out to the theatre to save out usual seats 7 rows from the front on the left isle. We’ve sat in the same place for years and as people come into the theatre, we say “HI” and everyone is excited to be back and ready for 18 days of the best songwriters in the country to entertain us with their most recent works. It really feels like we’re back ‘home’ because this is where our hearts are and where we all forget about our work-a-day lives and return to an easier lifestyle that only includes minimal trappings of the real world… it’s like returning to the times before the responsibilities of mortgages and careers.

As I sit there waiting for the theatre to fill up and the music to begin, I am overwhelmingly happy to be alive.

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