Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Catching Up on the Last 10 Days: Spencer, Shepherdstown, Antietam, Morgantown, Charleston, Jackson's Mill

I did almost nothing the last two days, and after reviewing the photos on my camera, I see why. It's been a wild ride. Here's a video diary of where we've been:

Spencer, WV, October 5: Tamarack Foundation's Artisan Fair. This is just one of the many artists who came to display and demonstrate their craft. I was there telling stories and selling my books and CDs.

The event included an evening dinner and presentations and music by the Carpenter Ants.

October 9: Shepherdstown, WV: Telling stories for the WV Library Association's annual conference, with my good friend, storyteller and retired coal miner Fred Powers. We presented a program of coal stories, songs, poems and artifacts, the first time we'd ever tried this presentation. It went very well, and I hope we will have opportunities in the future to do it again. Attendance was disappointing, especially considering this was a free performance and Fred and I had both traveled over 6 hours to be there. Usually my presentations for the library conference are well attended, but it's the luck of the draw--and the librarians seemed more drawn to the karaoke downstairs! (And some of those singers sounded pretty good, too!)

October 10th: My friend Liz's home near Antietam in Maryland. This home has something really unique: a picture of the man who built it, and a handwritten history of the house and its owners. When do you ever find something like that? The tree is a pecan, which surprised me--pecans this far north? This tree is huge!

October 10: The War Correspondents Memorial near Antietam Battlefield. It was raining so hard I could only take a few shots and duck back in the van.

 The park was closed due to the government shutdown so we could not visit the visitors center, but we were still able to drive around the park. On this rainy day, the somber mood reflected the history of the place, site of the Civil War's bloodiest battle, with over 22,000 killed, injured, or missing in one day's fighting.
 Antietam Creek, history says, ran red that day. Today it was calm and clear, with no sign of the horror of that day of battle.
 A lone sentinel still stands watch.

 Saturday, October 12: Morgantown, WV. Telling ghost stories with Jason at the Morgantown Library. We had a great crowd with friends, fans and new faces. My sister Theresa and her husband were in attendance, as was my good friend Susan, a folklore student at Fairmont and soon-to-be, I am sure, storyteller. We had lunch and lots of conversation, then headed to Fairmont for my son Aaron's 40th birthday party. We had so much fun there I forgot to take pictures!

 Saturday, October 12, evening, Charleston, WV: We got to C harleston just in time to see the incredible Liz O'Connell and Daithi Sproule in concert. Irish music at its best! And better than anything we heard in Ireland during our brief stay. This long day started at 5:30am and ended at 12:30am.

Sunday and Monday, October 13 and 14: Catch-up time! Rest, laundry, cleaning, rest, writing, rest, writing, rest, work on stories, rest, work on songs, rest. And repeat.

Tuesday, October 15: Work on stories, pack, drive to Weston, WV for the Jackson's Mill Storytelling Festival. Tonight's moon over Jackson's Mill. What a beauty.

Tomorrow and Thursday: Stories, stories, stories!

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

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