Earlier this month, Edna and I arrived in the land and amongst the community that raised me. With horse trailer (mobile shop/salvaged building material storage) in tow, we boarded the all-so-familiar ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor. Ahhh, the well-known streets and trees, smells and sounds – with a flavor of new buildings, fresh faces, and other unknowns.
Our welcome back tea party was actually two tea parties: both of them Elephant Revival shows – one on San Juan Island and one on Lopez Island. And boy, were they fun. On San Juan, the show was a fundraiser for Brickworks – a year-round farmers’ market site (super cool project), and I couldn’t boil water fast enough, literally. I didn’t get one moment to enjoy the music, but the inspiration flew off the attendees and into the tea bus with each tea guest. Familiar and new faces all came aboard, and before long there was a gang of young kids offering tea bus stickers and passing tea to guests.
The Lopez show was much more relaxed, but offered time for me to catch up with old friends (one super good high school friend who I hadn’t seen in 5 years). Ultimately, both of these shows were an incredible welcome back to the islands. People were excited and eager to hear news of our journeys, see all the new woodworks, hear about the engine heated hot water, etc. I have to admit, it was quite fun to show Edna off…
A couple weeks later I ended up at a friend’s birthday party on Lopez. A girl I knew was operating her own free tea tent there in the woods. It was a gypsy tea paradise with tapestries, lanterns and candles, fresh homegrown steeped herbs, and rugs. I had an amazing time being a tea guest – I couldn’t stop getting refills.
Recently, I was watching some footage from our going away tea party at Arts Alive in Eureka earlier this month. In the footage I said “I see this from the side of running the ship. I guess there’s a perspective that I’m lacking.” At this forest tea tent I got that perspective – at least a part of it. At some point a tea guest pulled the hostess aside and recognized the work it took to make such a thing happen. He thanked her profusely for the service and atmosphere. It feels great when someone expresses things as such, so it made me squeal with joy on the inside to have an idea of the feelings it was giving her.
Later at the party I sat by the campfire. The scene was more alcohol influenced, which was okay had it not been for an annoying fellow who wouldn’t shut up. Again, I was so thankful for the tea zone, this time because it gave me refuge. I love to provide that same thing in the night scene in cities, or at music festivals, or at crazy events – this time, however, I was the one appreciating it from the receiving end of things. Perspective is important. Thanks, Kyra.
I hope to share lots or tea, conversations, work, ideas, and time with this community I call home. Home (this place where I have spent half my life) is a place to help restore my health, provide a place to finish Edna, and act as a launching point for an epic journey (to be announced soon).
Oh, likely we will be at most Tuesday Night Music events at Brickworks while they’re happening (until the end of Sept). See you there!
All photos from Brickworks/Elephant Revival by Adrienne Beck and Catherine Moye.