Sunday, August 10, 2014

They call it Lark Camp, not Sleep Camp - Day 7 - late....

They call it Lark Camp, not Sleep Camp – if you whinge about being up too early, this is what the wise old jazz men from the morning group will quip. A day after leaving permanently, I now know what they mean. The level of fatigue is somewhat like jet lag. Lark Lag maybe. All week it was up for breakfast in the mess, then first workshops begin at 9:30am. But this is after dancing until well after midnight, then listening to some perfect music by the campfire. It's hell. I can't begin to imagine what being a soldier at war must be like.

Friday night we felt like we conquered Camp One. But we didn't really. We made a raid and survived. Almost like they didn't notice us. Except the Lord of the Camp – Mickey Zekley. He saw first hand what we can do and seemed to suitably approve. Put it this way. He didn't use the big ceremonial wooden hook which he was bearing.
Camp Director, Mickey Zekley sitting with his hook.

The ukestra opened Karen's Variety Concert (will put that youtube up soon) and then Jane and I were privileged to close the show. We have a standard closer song, which is Nick Cave's Into My Arms. As usual we forgot to record it (if anyone does have a recording it would be appreciated!). It is suitably lyrically challenging for the God Fearing United States of America - starting as it does with I don't believe in an interventionist God. But quickly redeems itself and becomes endearing.

The Lark Camp Ukestra went really well, and we added some suitable cheese with the heavy artillery of the brass band joining us for the last verse of Sunshine of Your Love. So lovely it were.

Karen introduced Jane and I using our application submission for the performance. The application asked “why do you think you would be good in this concert”. I answered “because Americans think us Aussies are cute, like chipmunks”. So she used that quote to introduce us. Needless to say people started doing chipmunk moves, and when we started talking one audience member interjected “awwww, they're so cute!”.

I also stepped into the breech of inter-camp rivalry - one more comment please - Camp Two rocks!. The suitably Camp Two stacked audience roared in approval (I think).

Into My Arms is a great song for a listening and participatory audience. There was a PA but we stepped in front of it, didn't use it, and went completely acoustic. Always the preferred option. The whole room sang (100? 150? people) in full harmony. That always sends chills up my proverbial. Such an incredible way to finish our time here.

Finally I need to make a comment on the whole cuteness issue. I get it now. We heard around camp that there was another Aussie, so after our performance I chased her down. Myf was working in the kitchen and came out when she heard her name called out in an Australian accent. We had a good chat (turns out she is an ethnomusicologist from Brisbane) but it was so giggle and smile-inducing for me to hear another Australian (I cannot hear my own accent, or Jane's).

I found her accent sooooo cute.  Like a chipmunk.


  1. I enjoyed the musing on camp 2. As a camp 1 Irish player who never leaves camp1 it was interesting to know camp 2 does exist. Or so you say. I am not real sure about that though. You should know that we only drink enough, never too much. And what's wrong with playing tunes 24 hours a day. Isn't that what the coffee house is for? I did meet and chat with Myf, and she seems much smarter that you average chipmunk, much better looking too. Have a safe trip home.

    1. That's funny Daniel! Home now. Missing Camp 2 Larkians in particular. They are real. I can assure you.

  2. As a confirmed camp hopper because they are all strange and wonderful in they own ways, I suggest throwing yourself at the mercy of the bus system and camp 4 and investigate. They are all different. You will find a lot of young people in camp three and one. It's all an adventure wherever you are.

  3. Thanks for writing what I would have written if I could have … I actually read all installments in one sitting, a form of high praise indeed from a retired journalist! Hope our oaths cross again sometime, preferably at next year's Lark. Happy Webtrails!

  4. I hope I swear at you again sometime Bob! Thanks for reading. But I also hope that our paths cross again sometime too.