I am looking forward to that.
We had fun and spent the last hours of the trip listening to the Keith Richards' autobiography which made my soul so happy. Damn but I love that book. Every time I listen to it or read it with my eyes again I love Keith more. All the good stuff is in there- how he recorded Jumpin' Jack Flash and how he and Mick wrote it. How he learned to tune his guitar in an open tuning using only five strings and how that completely opened up a whole new world of guitar playing for him. How to do heroin properly (only do the pure stuff, pace yourself, don't mainline it, don't try this at home...), and basically what it was like to be a fucking Rolling Stone back in the day. Which covers an awful lot of ground and territory and geography and history and musical influences and sex and drugs and rock and roll.
"It's not the rock," he says. "It's the roll."
We decided on our way home that since Lon was already in Lloyd with Mr. Moon because he'd bought a car from Glen, that they should spend the night and we should have one last hurrah. And so it was. We instructed them to bring home steaks and assured them that we were bringing the blue cheese olives.
It looked like this when we unloaded all our produce and liquor in the kitchen:
With a few eggs.
And oh, what a good time we had! We got home before the boys did and it was just a glory to be back with our fellows when they pulled up. Lon kept saying, "It sure is good to have the wimmins back." And they told us they'd missed us and that we were beautiful and we told them the same and it was true.
The men chopped wood and built a fire and cooked that meat and Lis and I heated bread and made the world's best mashed potatoes ever and a beautiful salad with Jessie's tomatoes and our basil and after supper, Mr. Moon made everyone sherbet and grape juice floats.
Lon, who is the sweetest man in the entire world had a long discussion with me about the dogs. Because he is an evolved being and a dog-lover, he told me that quite honestly, yes, the dogs are very old but that he is certain they still would prefer to be alive.
I listened and agreed that he is probably right but...I don't care.
It was great. We laughed and laughed.
And I made Lis watch Keith Richards and Rolling Stones Youtubes with me. I should be ashamed of that but dammit! She made me go listen to bluegrass!
Fair is fair, right?
And then we all went to bed and I told Mr. Moon the story of the Magical And Wondrous Spa in the same droning voice I tell Owen the Mr. Peep story and he fell asleep before I got to the pool with stars above it and even as he snored, I finished the story and this morning he told me that he kept waiting for Mr. Peep to show up in the story and I think I probably went to sleep smiling.
Maurice slept on top of me and I loved it and the dogs peed and puked in our room and in the dining room and I did not love that and Dolly has puked again twice this morning. Frankly, I think they're telling me they want to die, no matter what Lon says.
When we got up this morning, Mr. Moon made himself and Lon Glen McMuffins and who knew that my husband could cook? This is a bit scary in that now he might expect me to go get a job.
Lon and Lis have taken off to go home to Gatorbone and I swear to you- I love those people so much. Lis spoiled the everlovin' crap out of me the entire trip and gave me a new present every day. The most gorgeous shawl you've ever seen made quite possibly from butterfly wings, beautiful earrings, delightful soap- oh my god. The list goes on. I'm not sure how I live without her when we're not together. Last night we were sitting on the porch and I looked around at my trees and my chickens and my cat and the fellas out tending the fire, and all of this, all of this, and I said, "I've got it all."
"Yes you do," she said, "And so do I."
We are the luckiest women on earth and we know it.
She is going to spend her day driving home with Lon in their new car, unpacking, cleaning up her house, getting groceries and cooking- preparing for the people coming in this evening to record with them. Meanwhile my goal for the day is to unpack my suitcase (done!), do laundry, clean out the hen house, water the plants. And watch my chickens. I am sorrowful that Drogo is gone but it is interesting to observe as Elvis takes on the flock of sister-wives. I have seen him on Missy this morning already, and before Drogo died, I never saw him take one of the young hens in marital relations.
When Lis and I were driving back from the magical and unbelievably charming town of Asheville, North Carolina, we talked about how there are so many places in the world we could live and yet, here we are- she in Gatorbone, me in Lloyd. Are we really as happy in these places as we would be living somewhere else? It's a mind-boggling question, really. And who knows?
But here I am this morning and the dragonflies are flitting everywhere, darting singly and in tandem, the crickets are singing their hearts out, the green of all the trees and plants filters the sunlight, my chickens are out scratching, Maurice is lying beside the computer, flicking her tail at me, her back resting on my arm, and honestly- I don't know that I could be happier living anywhere else on earth. Maybe as happy. I don't know. North Carolina sure has a lot fewer bugs and the heat isn't as bad but hell- it snows there in winter. And maybe someday I'll be this happy in Apalachicola sitting on my dock of the bay.
But for right now, this second, this is where I want to be. Right here.
Now if Lily would just bring those boys out.
Mr. Moon is mowing, I think I might go eat some leftovers from The Grit and piddle about, sweeping and watering, washing and drying, letting old blind dogs in and out of the house who can't remember where they are or why they wanted out in the first place. I'll be thinking of Asheville and and all of the sweetness and good food and the joy of being with Jessie and Vergil and Lis and Liz Sparks and smiling all day long.
I'll be here, thinking that I'm the most grateful old motherfuck of a sixty-year old granny you ever met in your life.
I went away and had the best time imaginable and now I am home.
I am home.