I just got back from a quick but inspiring trip up to northern California to visit my family's farm and all of the lovely creatures that live there. I somehow managed to hit the most beautiful, sunny day to be out in the hills with the horses. I took my brushes, a bucket of grain, and my parents' two cattle dogs dogs, and hiked up over the rolling green hills to the horses' favorite hiding spot. You can't see it from the road at all. It's a meadow sheltered on all sides by huge oak trees. There are two small ponds there that fill in the winter.
As I came over the second rise, I could see six little black ears poking up from behind the next hill. The sound of the full bucket I was carrying was enough to draw them running to me, and I poured a few piles out on the grass as they swirled around me choosing which pile to claim.
But, the one I most wanted to see, the one who is the wisest, sweetest, most trustworthy horse I've ever known, and who is now 29 years old, kept his distance like he always does. Eventually, the call of the red bucket brought him sauntering up to me, but he stayed just out of my reach for a while, until he was sure I didn't have a rope to catch him with and take him back to the barn. I'm convinced that the reason he's doing so well for such an old guy, is because we let him be free in the hills as soon as the weather is good enough. He looks so much older when he's in the little corral at the barn. He sighs a lot, and pleads to be let go. When I'm in L.A., I even have dreams about him standing in his stall, looking out to the hills...
He and I used to do some pretty crazy things together. We rode in 3-Day Events when I was about 14. We would fly through the courses and over massive jumps, through water, and down steep hills...
So, I spent my day out there with my buddies. I brushed their cozy winter coats, and sat and enjoyed the sound of their huge jaws munching. There is something so comforting about listening to horses eat. It's like the sound of waves on the shore, or crickets in the night. It has always made me feel like all is well with the world.
I'm back in L.A. now, feeling like my batteries are recharged. I have a show in Hermosa Beach tonight, and it will be fun to play a solo acoustic set and get back to the core of my songs.
We're steadily recording songs for the new CD, and steadily raising money to go into the recording costs, but we still have a way to go. I just added a Paypal button to the front page, so that makes it easier for people to contribute. We have had such a great response to this pre-sale model!
Here's the new button: