I think from an early age, my wanderlust was deeply instilled into my psyche by my parents. Not only by their stories of experiences and travels, which to me sounded awe inspiring, but by the music, books and artwork they filled the house with. These things put into motion the forward trajectory my life would take on. When I was quite young I discovered Jack Kerouac in my parents bookshelf, I was curious and under recommendation from either my mother or father, I honestly can’t remember which, I read The Dharma Bums. Let me rephrase that, I inhaled The Dharma Bums and then opened to the first page and started all over again. This book had such a profound and lasting effect on me, that its value in my life is incalculable. The story of a wanderer, searching and finding everything, from nothing, to intense somethings. It sent me deep into the woods around my house, with a pack and an introspective mind. It was also quite sad at times, and that was something I needed to relate to. Hopelessness is something most of us experience on some level, certain individuals more so than others, and this book helped me to understand, or at least know these emotions on a deeper level. The same thing with music, hearing my father listening to jazz alone in our garage, hearing the way Charlie Parker’s notes bobbed and weaved through the rafters and out into the night, fighting to be free and fly towards the stars. The way John Mclaughlin’s guitar twisted and shrieked as if an animal bound by chains in a dark dungeon fighting to run the mountain sides. Or on a long drive to upstate New York, my mother playing “Brokedown Palace” and those words sticking with me to this very day… “Mama, mama many worlds I’ve known, since I first left home”. Or the elusive nature of my mothers paintings, as if abstract glimpses into a world only she ever visited. I remember sitting for what seemed like hours and looking at a painting she referred to as a triple self portrait and trying to understand how her mind worked. As an adult who shares an amazing amount of the same traits as my mother, I now understand, I only wish she were still around so I was able to share it with her as an adult, rather than as a child. All of these things added to my desire for experience and an unwillingness to sit still for too long. Many share this desire and it can be quite alienating if you allow it to be. I am fortunate enough to have an amazingly supportive and understanding wife who shares this and has moved all across the country with me, plus supports me while I leave home for a month of tour. She helps to ground me, in a way well needed while on the road. Just like Kerouac in The Dharma Bums, when he spends a month or so sleeping on his mothers back porch, we all need time to be grounded. This past weekend we spent in Portland, was a great taste of that. While living there, my wife Heather and I met and created a friendship with the Quale family, which I am quite sure will last forever. Eric, Apol and their children Conrad and Eloise were so gracious as to allow us a home for 3 nights. It was the recharge I needed to make this last leg of the tour. The only tough part about it was the intensity with which I was already missing my wife multiplied a billion times, but only a few more days left. Tour is an interesting universe, reading Will Oldham’s new book he hit it somewhat right when he said, “you’re not going to these places; the tour is its own destination. You go on tour and that’s like going some place, and the other stuff, that does not equate to what other people think when they say, ‘Oh you’ve been here, here and here?’ No, not really. I haven’t really been to those places. Every once in awhile, yes, if you get two or three days or its been a specifically unique and powerful experience, but for the most part I haven’t been to the places I’ve toured.” The shows in Oregon were great, let it be known that Zig Zag truly knows how to party and we will definitely be back! Plus, getting to play at Duff’s Garage after so many years was really a blast.