We had a bit of an adventure getting there. My fancy new gps box sent us on a rather odd route, but made up for it by finding us an excellent restaurant for dinner - it was the best middle eastern food I'd had in some time, plus a belly dance show! Super Rad! (Thanks, Jovino.) It also helped us find a nearby supermarket for the inevitable forgotten items, as well as a couple of impulse buys that turned out to be a lot of fun - half priced lights for cabin and dancefloor decorations. And the gps was truly useful driving on twisty turny mountain roads at night, as the screen shows the road just ahead so you can tell if the next turn is a real hairpin, or a gentler curve. Very helpful!
We also spent over an hour driving around trying to get around a closed highway... and then you had to drive through an actual river to finally get to the site. (When the directions said "cross the river" I naively assumed there would be a bridge!) By the time we rolled up it was around midnight, but of course there were people hanging out. We broke out a bottle of champage to properly celebrate our arrival. Yay!
We were up pretty late - Jovino got to spin, when the DJ who'd been spinning grabbed him the minute he walked into the lodge, and he had people dancing late into the night. Eventually I took over for a short set to wind things down a bit. In between, I had some really nice interactions with people. it was great to see folks I hadn't seen in a while - Plaid, XTC and Eno, Milly and Laura, Kathasaurus, and a ton of others, including many norcal peeps I don't see often enough.
I also got the Matt Shaw story - from Matt himself! It was really cool to get to hang out with him. Last year I'd been asking various people about the Matt Shaw phenomenon, how it got started etc. I got a number of different stories, none quite the same. I did meet Matt last year, but didn't get around to asking him about it then. Now my curiosity is finally satisfied.
Late, late. Time for bed. I didn't get much sleep that night, mostly due to our cabin being a very popular place. The kids with the popular party favors made a lot of noise all weekend long. What can you do? I decided to try for a nap before NYE as I knew I'd want to be up late that night. Little did I know just how late I would be up!
That afternoon there was beer tasting in the lodge. We got to try some midwestern microbrews (very tasty) as well as two special Belgian holiday beers (unusual - I liked one quite a bit more than the other) and a wide range of other specialty beers. Most of them were really good, a few of them tasted like ass. Of course, eventually the more intrepid tasters had to try the swill bucket (where you dumped out ones you didn't want to finish.) Spork was berating people for dumping out "perfectly good beer, just because it tastes bad" - but then refused to try the swill bucket blend! A few folks claimed the swill bucket was the best thing they'd tried, but I think that was probably just the alcohol talking. I braved a tiny sip and thought it tasted metallic - like robot ass. I did really enjoy most of the exotic beers, and was intrigued at how different the beers of different countries were.
The NYE party was a lot of fun. I especially enjoyed talking with people I rarely see but like very much, and even got a couple of new year's kisses from sweet friends. Someone had set up a bar using the various Chilled "Fruit" Beverages coming out of a machine in the lodge as mixers. There were 6 different kinds of booze and 6 different kinds of mixer. You rolled dice to determine which of each you got. I totally lucked out with vodka and fruit punch! Others were not so fortunate, getting things like coffee liqueur with orange juice, or gin with water. I decided to quit while I was ahead, and instead of having another round at the dice bar, broke out the good bottle of unfiltered sake I'd brought along. A nice fellow named Art was drinking sake nearby and we traded tastes. He also kindly lent me two beautiful blue glass sake glasses he had along, which were the perfect elegant vessel for the delicious unfiltered sake. (I was saving my bottle of good champagne for actual midnight.)
Jovino came up and asked if I wanted to tag team DJ with him around midnight. Of course I said yes. It turned out the DJ who was on before us was ready to quit at 11:30, so we hopped on. I got to play the song right before midnight, and chose the house version of Long Train Running (Without Love Where Would You Be Now) I often spin. It Went The Fuck Over! People were jumping up and down and cheering! I will never forget it.
I was delighted to start off the new year in creative collaboration with Jovino. I love working with him, whether it's sewing, spinning, travelling, or just plain getting things done. We have amazing energy together and it makes me really happy! Our tag teaming always takes us to places neither one of us would have found otherwise. And he is a kickass DJ. Better than me. He says he's not, but it's true, he is. I don't mind, I'm completely proud of him. We spun and spun, for hours. Eventually it started getting light. We tried to wind things down a bit, playing more chill music, but the few people still bouncing around were having none of it - they wanted more uptempo (bribing us with champagne before nicely asking - perfect form for making requests!) Since the people chilling out on the couches didn't seem to mind, we rolled on for several more. Eventually Patrick turned up to start his morning set, and I realized we'd been spinning from around 11:30 until about 7 the next morning! AND, they were streaming it over Theory Radio! (Someone had a cel hookup.) I haven't gotten to spin on Theory in months. Extra Bonus Treat!
We spent some lovely time together winding down and finally fell asleep in our little bunk bed. I sure do love that man. Morning and the cheery sounds of the inevitable cabin partiers came too soon, but what can you do? We stumbled up to the lodge, cracked out and happy. I'd posted to the planning list that I would be bringing tarot cards, and invited people to ask me for readings. A friend came up and said she'd like to have me read for her, so I had a bit of breakfast (banana and a spanks) and got my cards out. Two more folks came up and had me read, and it went quite well - I was not too cracked out to read well, and everyone was pleased with their new year's day readings. I was happy to do it. I want to do more with the tarot this year, I really enjoy it, and it can be very helpful in thinking about things.
Noosha asked me if I'd be willing to run music for the Special Olympics later that day. Deeze had some TV theme cds and he suggested I choose music from them. I had a great time picking out tracks like Mission Impossible, Gilligan's Island, Hawaii 5-0 and others for the various silly events. I especially enjoyed playing Wonder Woman for PK and Heidi's creative presentation to the judges, and the A Team theme when everyone was gogo dancing for the judges for last minute influence. And I played Bohemian Rhapsody for the freeze dance contest. To everyone's surprise, the NORCAL team actually WON! I jumped up and down and screamed! I don't think I've ever seen norcal win anything, and our slogan used to be "Norcal, Not Last!" So, fuck yeah!!
This was also the day of the no-talent show. Someone was running a video camera through a tv for the audience - I'm hoping there was tape running. It was pretty funny. Jovino had one of the best acts of the day. He got out a little tray of veggie sushi, opened a tube of wasabi, mixed up the shoyu, and tried a piece. Not enough wasabi! So he took the tube and squeezed a big pile of wasabi onto the next piece of sushi, and ate it. People were hooting and hollering! But apparently this was still not enough for him, so he squeezed the rest of the tube straight into his mouth and swallowed it. People were shocked - screaming! He rolled off the bench onto the floor, lay there twitching for a minute, then got up and ran off. I went to help him, and people tried to bring him milk (which he doesn't drink). He asked for a beer instead, and downed that. He seemed none the worse for wear, and we watched the rest of the show from the back. When it was my turn, I got up and told a dumb joke and was booed. (At least it was a short one!) Hey, you ask for no talent, you get no talent. A woman who'd camped at the camp as a Campfire Girl got up and sang one of her old camp songs. Vanessa blew smoke rings, and also presented a really funny act called Big Man, Little Chair. Overall it was a great no talent show.
Later, there was had oatmeal wrestling. First thumb wrestling in oatmeal, then full on oatmeal wrestling. I watched this from a distance, as the sploshy thing is SO not my thing (and I've seen tapioca wrestling etc before.) It was fun to watch though, and of course it made a huge mess. One of the wrestlers came back with a shovel to help clean up afterwards, which earned her major cool points with me.
Sunday was a chill night, because most everyone was tired out from the night before. A few high energy folks entertained the rest of us by dancing energetically while the rest of us vegged out on couches. It was friend tv at its finest!
Jovino and I turned in pretty early, as we needed to leave promptly in the morning to get to the fabric district. We drove back through the river and down the mountain as clouds gathered and rain began to fall. Once down on the highway, the rain came in sheets. I was glad that he was driving, it would have scared me to be behind the wheel in weather that bad. I would have had to pull over.
The fabric district was kind of a bust. Lots of places weren't open (including two of the four which I'd made a point of calling before we left town, and which had assured me they would be open.) We did hit the trims place, and the fur place, but weren't able to make our main purchase - we need more fleece, and we need it pretty soon for production for FC. I left them a message saying that I'd been by and that since I couldn't stay in LA any longer, I was hoping they'd be able to make me a deal on shipping. We will see. I'll call them tomorrow and see what they say.
We hit the road out of town around 3 and cruised along without incident, until we hit the I-5/Ca-99 split. They weren't letting anyone onto the 5. We wound up getting on just past Bakersfield. Apparently the storm caused several accidents and even downed some power lines onto the 5. Most of the accidents were on the southbound side, so we got off relatively easily. I was even more surprised to return home and read emails from other Twigsvillians who'd left later in the day and encountered some really heavy weather (including snow chain requirements, sleet, hail, and large falling rocks.) A few people decided to wait out the storm at the camp. Everyone got home ok eventually. And thus endeth another fabulous Twigsville!
My favorite parts were spending time and having really nice conversations with Jovino and many other sweet peeps, and the NYE tag team set. A ton of people came up and said they really enjoyed our set, and one even said he could see how in love we are, watching up spin together and hearing our music!
Twigsville rocks. I sure hope we can go again next year!