March 14th, 2008


Down to the Chocolate Church to see Janis Ian, hurrah...

So, yesterday, in the later afternoon, both of us being in a mood for a ride, we stopped for gas and then motored down to Bath. We arrived after about an hour and ten minutes on the road, happily driving on the opposite shift from much of the so-called rush hour and then leaving Route 1, taking a left, and being just where Delorme said we'd be.

Driving by the Chocolate Church itself, ( we wove through some of Bath's backstreets to the Beale Street BBQ and Cafe, where we found an amusing mix of old blues and good food. Crab cakes all around, a substitution of Chardonnay for Pinot Grigio (gone!), and then back to the Chocolate Church just in time to catch up with Ellen of Childrens BookCellar fame (, and thence more amusement in the form of an impromptu tour of the inner reaches of the Chocolate Church, where we had an encounter with some brief confusion.

While we were searching for the right way to our seats, a door with a Janis Ian sign on it opened, and there was Janis herself, who used a head point and a smile as an invite and dragged us into the cramped and possibly underlit dressing room where we talked about the book biz, her upcoming autobiography and how she'd had to change tour schedules on account of it, and the press of time, and then we happily found our seats, second row center.

Around us for the most part was a group looking very fannish and somewhat greybearded on the male side; many of these people, after all, have been listening to Janis Ian music since the 1960s.

Before and between sets the audience was also fannish in their willingness to talk and share; we ended up geekily talking computers with the man behind us, and sharing URLS on the back of business cards.

The Chocolate Church has great sound -- go see a show there and see and hear for yourself. The room holds under 280.

As for the Janis show ... it was the least formal of her shows we've seen yet, with just Janis, a couple guitars, and ... good music. In case you don't know, you really need to pay attention to her guitar playing -- Janis is a guitar whiz! I can't do justice to the power and joy of the show: there was a fair amount of musical and even some minor political retrospection and humor in it, and a great deal of Janis; for an encore we did a singalong. Alas, we did get a brief interlude of musical cellphone, but Janis handled it well...

If you have a chance to see Janis in a small venue, do it. We did it and hope to do it again.

Then...we exited the church into light snow, taking leave of Ellen and launching the Subaru into its native element. Much of the way home we had snow showers, and the concern I had was the temperature at freezepoint and the wet road. In fact the expressway looked a bit too slick from time to time at highway speeds...

As we approached Augusta we could see the swirl of flakes starting to thicken and coat and we got off I-95 just behind an 18 wheeler who'd been being careful; we crossed the Kennebec on the new bridge just north of Augusta to use Rt 201 most of the rest of the way home, the 18 wheeler ahead of us all the way to Mid-State Machine, arriving at home to find the ground and deck lightly covered.

This morning there are random flakes in the air, and the deck is more than dusted and the roads covered. Rolanni is off to work and RSN I need to get on the road myself and head north for some face-to-face time with the webguy.

Forecast? Snow showers today and then ... Snow likely in the evening...then snow after midnight. Snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches. Lows in the upper 20s. Chance of snow near 100 percent. Saturday
Cloudy. Snow likely ... total accumulation 3-5 inches and snow showers likely after midnight Saturday. Chance of (rain and) snow showers Sunday and then on Thursday, chance of snow (and rain showers).

Version 2.0 -- Also, we lucked out timewise, since the police were later involved in a high speed chase on portions of our route ...
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