1. the first night.
i have to admit i was terrified. i didn't know or recognize a single person there, and from my perspective, everyone there already knew everyone else, and i felt like the new kid at school trying to find a spot to sit in the cafeteria. i hate to admit i considered taking my food from dinner that night back to my dorm and hiding out there, but damn it i put on my brave face and sat down at an almost empty table. that particular friendship didn't exactly blossom, but you might say it was a learning experience.
i spent the evening trying to stay connected with people who were familiar to me, but it's funny: by the end of the week, i had almost no text messages in my self-clearing inbox and outbox.
2. the fort.
from the second i arrived in port townsend to the second i had to leave, i spent every free moment reveling in the beauty around me. the town was adorable, fort worden was amazing -
actually the fort really needs its own blog post. i'll try to condense it. fort worden is an american army installation built to protect the puget sound. according to wikipedia. it consists of these beautiful big white c-shaped buildings with courtyards in the centers. the windows are trimmed with dark green, and they sit a stone's throw away from the beach overlooking the sound. i couldn't get enough of it while i was there, and i miss it every minute i'm home.
3. the music.
it seems like a given i guess. but what i'm referring to goes beyond the rhythmic patterns of sound and silence that in the dictionary define 'music'. it was the entire culture, the sustenance, the shared passion of over 200 people. being able to breathe in the wisdom and experience of some of the greatest players in the world is an absolutely priceless gift.
i learned way more about them than i wanted to during the week. i am not kidding. show me a blister, and i can tell you approximately what color fluid will drain (or if you're lucky, spurt) out of it if you were to pop it. i learned what kind of band-aids don't affect your tone too much if you need to protect one. unfortunately they involved 'barbie' and 'hello kitty' prints. i learned where exactly a blister has to be to immobilize an entire finger for solid days in a row. fun stuff. calluses are much better, i've decided.
5. the combo experience.
playing in adam schroeder's combo was not only a lot of fun, but probably the musical highlight of my week. as a group, the whole was greater than the sum of the individual musicians.
playing at the pope marine building on friday night was such an amazing experience. ask anyone who spent a significant amount of time with me that night - i was too excited. i was ready to go two hours early, and my call time couldn't come soon enough. the crowd was awesome, almost everything went really smoothly.
halfway through i became aware that an old blister was acting up, but i ignored it. during the last chart, i realized i had nasty blisters bubbling up, and even tearing, on almost every finger that came in contact with the bass. i played through it though, and my mind didn't register a bit of pain. my body must have, because i remember sweating that had little to do with the temperature, and my mom says i looked like i was in agony. but it was a truly magical moment, and completely about the music.
6. playing for john clayton.
i won't even attempt trying to describe the guy. unless you've met him, you weren't even aware that someone so genuine and interesting existed.
still, playing in front of a virtuoso of your instrument should be a bit intimidating.
i know i was scared before, and even after the experience, but i've never been as calm as i was playing my so-so rendition of autumn leaves on tuesday afternoon. make of it what you will?
7. wycliffe gordon's solo.
really, words will never do that 5 minutes on a thursday afternoon justice.
*meaning infinite things i'll remember, but 7 for now. more + pictures will be added soon!