July 11th, Yes Trek Day 1



Through the mist of a million years of high energy three riders skimmed the surface of the plain of Tallowcross and raced towards a dream. Their meeting point lying between the glades and Gardens of Geda and the high mountain masses, where fountains of light and color and soft winds of passion, openly existing through wisdom, surrounded the three that silent eve, they sang together through motions only ways, as all around them sparkled and chorused in wonder.

-- Jon Anderson, from the story that accompanies Olias of Sunhillow


I was packed and psyched and turning the car key on the late side of a lovely, blue-skied day when the engine of my hunter green Grand V-ger wouldn't turn over. I had left the map light on overnight and the battery was drained. Our second car was handy and I had jumper cables, so I just jumpstarted myself and was pleased at the accomplishment. Late, though. It soon became apparent I would not complete the 3-hour drive to Columbus in time to meet Yann Clochec's arriving flight. I decided to enjoy the sunset and dallied along the back ways to the central Ohio location. Not lost in the city I found Chris Emery's apartment, but nowhere to park, so kept moving in a driving daze and sonic cloud of loud Jon music, not noticing the guys on the balcony shouting to me and flailing their arms.


In the process of turning around I spied an Indian restaurant and could not resist. I imagined the gang was dining already at Hoster's Brewery and so altered my famished state with papadam and samosas and chipati and some very spicy curried okra. As the over-eager waiter hovered above me to appease every need, I began considering the city location relative to crime and felt vulnerable with the cartop carrier, loaded with camp gear. I wondered if a hotel with a garage might place my mind at ease. Once, while staying with Rhea Frankel in Philadelphia, to see Jon at HMV record store, my car and Moongate Dawn of Light Grib Climber's truck had been vandalized. I didn't want anything inauspicious to happen this time. I noted the location of the Ohio State Campus Holiday Inn and meandered back to Chris' apartment.


Serendipity smiled as I first encountered my traveling companions at the white-pillared entrance to the Emery domicile. As I stood pondering which button to push, none of them marked with Chris' name, Chris and Yann were leaving to get dinner with a married pair of friends, TStan and Kim McGinnis. It was hugs and handshakes all around. I told them I'd already eaten and meant to check into a hotel, that I would catch up with them at the brewery.


At Hoster's a sign on a delivery truck said, "Think Globally, Drink Locally." I didn't bring any ID because I hadn't been barhopping in ages and, at age 37, was out of the habit of being "carded." The guy at the door, surely sensing the high vibration, let me in and didn't even charge me the cover fee. I found the get-acquainted experience funny because the live music, courtesy of Happysac, was so very loud we couldn't easily communicate verbally. The awkward patter at first meetings I mentioned before was impossible, an interesting twist to me, entirely unconventional: I approved. We just smiled and gestured, drank and hung out, more or less. It was reminiscent of my first encounter with Moongate Dawn, at her home, at the time, in the Dayton, Ohio, area, about 4 years ago. She suffered laryngitis and was fully unable to chat. So we just sat quietly and drank tea, variety "Constant Comment," the irony of which just "dawned" on me.


I thought about dancing, but didn't want to embarrass Chris in front of his friends. So I downed my Reverend Purley Pale Ale and left them to smile and shout at one another, throw sugar packets or whatever was necessary, admiring the low orange first-quarter moon as it swung around and followed me back to the hotel. I was happily aware that we would enjoy moonlight each night of the journey and that the moon would be full my last night at Wendy's.



my merry tale **** Day 2