Head and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes, knees and toes…. while it sounds like a great song for toddlers it is also where I am feeling most of the pain after many shows in Saskatoon.
Saskatoon has always been the rival city to Regina and being from Regina I was all ready to triumph over Saskatoon. BUT it broke me first. Running total is 21 shows, 2 a day, with some interviews in between? An extra show at the welcome showcase and all without tea or greens? Me poor legs have seen better days. I’ve started to feel some old pains in the once repaired shoulder and stiffness in the neck. So after 2 weeks on the road my oh my the Jew is ready to complain. Oy.
But I want to tell you about Saskatoon. Our first show was our first encore of the tour. Amazing crowd. Just great. So many school groups and so much love. So many new people hearing our music and message about children saving the world. All this would be fine except that I had totally run out of laundry. Here’s where Regina saves me. My good friend (and witness to my nuptuals!) Shelley arrived on our second day in Saskatoon baring tea, moisturizer and underwear. Oh lord I was happy to see Shelley. Just as I was really getting tired, the cavalry came. Shelley brought her sweet daughter, Paige, to lighten our hearts. She danced at … maybe 4 of our shows and brought a great amount of joy to Henry as he “babysat” her. Shelley, and her husband Ken, also brought a much needed pick me up of new voices. We had new things to discuss, new swimming buddies and of course new people to lift our gear. Bless you Shell and family. You saved me!
Show after show after show. The wonderful people at the fest gave us great sound (thanks Roy!) and loads of love (thanks Shauna, her dad Bob and Adriene and all those amazing kids!)
Then came the Sean. I grew up in a house full of leftist, crazy, Trotsky-arguing, cigar-smoking activists…. in REGINA! At times I felt a bit odd in comparison to some of my friends. Sean’s family was the most like mine. Divorced before it was cool, peace marches and the only other Jews I had ever met in Regina as well. Most of my strangest memories of the truck going through the ice on Regina Beach, eating peanut butter on escargot and running rampant with a pack of kids and dogs is with Sean and Jenny Sass. These two will always be my family no matter how many years go by without a visit. So, when Sean and his wife Sheena had us over it was like coming home. I did a load of laundry, ate an actual meal complete with home cooked tasty green things and did not hear a peep from Henry as he played in the arms of Piper and Moishe (Sean’s kids). Bliss. Sean’s dad, Bob, came after dinner and spoke so passionately about the problems facing people who have been exposed to asbestos that it made me want to write a million letters to the PM. The next day they all came to our show and then took Henry and Brooke to the rest of the fest. Watching Piper, Mo and Henry run like the pack of wolves that Sean, Adam, Jenny and I once were warmed my heart in a way I can’t describe. It made me miss how different it was growing up in wonderful place like Saskatchewan in a time before video games and worry, before mortgage payments and security airplane tax….. no. Ours was a time where all our parents would live forever and teach us always to do the right and just thing, no matter how old we were. This is where Power to the Little People began for me. Me and Sean, trying to fit in and realizing that we only fit inside our own little tribe. Our pack. Thanks old friend. It’s great to know you are there, on the prairies. I hope to see you next year.
And just like that we were gone, in a puff of cinnamon, off to Winnipeg. This is where it gets weird. We have traveled from Calgary to Winnipeg together and then we noticed that we weren’t alone. The dinosaurs were with us. That’s right. The Dinosaur Petting Zoo has the same schedule as we do. Henry has made friends with the Aussie’s and though he fears the T-Rex, he will never have an experience like this again… There is nothing more alternative than this alternative school! 65 million years in the making, the dinosaurs and the monkeys have finally come together in Winnipeg. Where is Spielberg? Or at least Wes Anderson?
Home stretch. 4 shows left and I will miss my little crew but not the aches and pains.