What can I tell you? It would be in a way repetitive to regale the shows that were GREAT. The ones where we all felt less lonely.
You were there. You KNOW.
But I will add these things about each city/town I played in on the autumn tour, about these Canadian, Dutch, German, and English travels, where we met, where we touched and circled each other, where we wondered, where we danced, where we asked “why?” and “why not?” not of the gigs necessarily, but of that day, that time, of the fact that what we do together is so much more than my songs and you being there.
These are the places I played, and a few of the things I’ll remember:
In Port Alberni, I was told “you’ve lived a tragic life” and disagreed.
On Gabriola Island I fell asleep to the sounds of owls talking.
In Victoria a secret got out. I let it. I’d been holding on to it for awhile.
On Salt Spring Island I was transfixed by autumn leaves on a skylight.
I remember most from Denman Island that “people say all kinds of things, but they act on their feelings,” over comfort food.
In Armstrong four distinct chapters in my life met on one page.
During the show, Carla and I counted that I’ve played in Ymir eight times – the most I’ve played in any town, outside of my hometown.
In Calgary I tiptoed towards possibility, then ran away giggling.
Edmonton gave me three days of tears.
In Sherwood Park a man described the day his life changed while watching a turtle give birth, to assure me that life is long and full of unexpected wonder.
Regina kissed me with prairie autumn.
In Winnipeg I believed him – “you know what to do” – before sunrise on Osborne street.
Montreal sang every Disney song she could think of and I was glad I never finished any post-secondary schooling.
Ottawa let me rest my head on her lap and we planned our next bold move.
Toronto, as always, both soothed and excited and challenged and scared me. Our love story is being told so very slowly.
In Utrecht I was reminded of how I love short term routines in new cities.
Dusseldorf played music from home, connecting dots from far away places.
Offenbach kissed me too, but with wine and whiskey and Louis Armstrong.
In Berlin I turned 35.
Amersfoort reminded me how lucky I am to have mostly great gigs for open ears and hearts, and that noisy bars are few and far between. But noisy bars still happen.
In Hengelo I remembered how much I love the rain on my skin.
I felt lucky in Verden.
In Bremen I was overwhelmed by voices, sound, and the curve of a back that underlined “I love you.”
London flirted and skirted and darted and danced noisily, sweetly, and late into the night.
Beverley poured sunshine on the comfiest bed. It found familiar weight in broken hearts. It was full of kindness.
In Leeds we picked up where we left off, drinking wine while I went on too long and she smoked out the window, laughing and remembering.
In Alcester I was moved by family and friendship, by illness and endurance.
In Kelvedon a drummer did a decent Grant Lawrence impression and cited a long list of Canadian bands worth loving, known to him by the R3 podcast, and I missed Canada.
Onanole has come to be a much needed halfway point and always tells me “you’re tired, you’re safe here, sleep well.”
…and from there I drove home. 12,000+ Canadian kms later, planes and trains and rental cars through Germany, The Netherlands and England, wrong turns, right steps, hours, days, songs, duets, solos, parking tickets, speeding tickets, missed connections, connection, love, sex, touch, tears, remembering, forgetting, presence, absence, having, missing, something smaller and mightier than bridges over land and time, courage, fear, songs, stories, and nine weeks later –
I’m still yours.
and that was THAT tour.
and I’m going to rest now. Until the new year,
I love you this much (I assure you it’s A Lot):
Brilliant words you found, Christa, as always.
Glad to hear that you felt lucky in Verden :)
Looking forward to see you next spring.
I enjoyed listening to Christa’s music in Düsseldorf! It’s always nice to meet new musicians at the Stadtklang.org concerts. Hope to see you soon again in Düsseldorf.
Yay, Christa! What an amazing tour.
I love how this has been written. Seems like it could be a song.
Have a great holiday in Vancouver.
Looking forward to hearing you again.