Sunday, August 28, 2016

No Dogs, Drunkards, Or Outsider Poets Allowed

Every year we go to a folk festival over the weekend in August. My partner has been going for over forty years, and her father has been to every one for fifty years. The weekend is kind of his father's day. He arrives first, and usually has the whole campsite set up before any of us get there. Some years it has been freezing, literally, in August, and most years it's unbearably hot, as it was again this year, but we look forward to it every year.

The festival is in the middle of nowhere, and is used to fund a church, so the stage is on church grounds. The campsites are in a cow pasture. And setting up your tent, you have to avoid piles of cow manure. 

A couple of years we never even have gone over to the stage to hear the music. But in the basement of the church they have food, sloppy joes, chili, a stew, all kinds of pies, and milk, so we always manage to get down there. I've seen performers have the mic turned off on them for using profanity, and dogs are not welcome. I figure if dogs and profanity aren't welcome, I probably wouldn't be, either, but for this one weekend I bite my tongue and respect their holy ground.

There aren't any pictures from this year because an older family member got sick and the weekend turned out to be a rather painful ordeal, but the kids still got to do what they do, and Jenny bought a bottle of Rasberry wine. We left as we always do, wondering why we ever do this in the first place, but I'm already looking forward to next year.

In the church they have pictures of some of the prvious performers, including Ravi Shankar and Avery Schreiber. I hear at one time both banks of the stream were packed, and bikers showed up, and it was mayhem, with 10,000 people showing up. Now it's usually 500-1000. Quite a successful small village springs up, and musicians wander around from camp to camp sitting down and playing. 

I just stay silent, because there's a sign and everything that says no dogs, drunkards, or outsider poets allowed. 

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