Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Doin' the High Rockabilly Low Down

Hello friends!!!  I'm so conflicted about being home that I really don't know how to get back into the normal swing of things.  While I was glad to reunite with family and friends, I just wasn't quite ready to return to our land of waving grain and purple mountains' majesty - especially since our last day in Barcelona was magical!  Why am I so emotionally suited for the life of a bon vivant all the while hindered by the meager bank account of a very poor whatever the opposite of a bon vivant is...

Truly, I am not sure where to begin as we saw so many wonderful things and had so many splendid adventures.  I guess the best way to begin is to tell you that I saw Greenland!


It never occurred to me that our flight home from Spain would include a fly-over of that mysterious and giant island.  Like dipping my toes into the Mediterranean Sea for the very first time, I took particular delight in seeing a cartographer's view of the land of myth and vikings.

Remember, the camera adds ten each toe.

I have it on good authority that I am partial to sharing too many photos.  Even family and good friends seemed to get a little bored at the 1,000-photo mark in my slide show.  Before we left, everyone said, "Take loads of pictures."  Although, in fairness, they never finished that sentiment with, "And then be sure to favor me with a three-hour show-and-tell including a detailed explanation of each and every photo."

I figured the best way to handle this is to take the enlightened, new-age approach and write until my soul feels that there is nothing left to be written; which, taking into account the crazy jet lag (I'm awake by 4am every day), should be in pretty short order so hang in there with me.

As I'm sure that you are still reeling from the second-hand thrill of Greenland, I guess I'll give you a moment of pause to collect your thoughts before I share the highlights from...

I must say that Jose, the man behind High Rockabilly, really does an amazing job in terms of coordinating flights, itineraries, bands, accommodations, etc.  As a total hanger on-er, I felt pretty special with my all-access, aqua wristband AND my all-you-can-eat, purple wristband.  We were treated extremely well and it made our trip not only easy, but fun and affordable too.  Even with thirteen years under his belt, I don't know how he does it but he takes the logistical nightmare in stride, and is a great host.  My experience at High Rockabilly is best broken down into three parts - the beach, the music, and the people.


We arrived in town early the day before the official start of the festival.  Apparently, the town of Calafell is not too averse to the idea of all these tourists descending upon their quiet beach community.  In fact, banners all along the strand welcomed our motley crew - in multiple languages, no less.

Not only were there banners, but many of the shopkeepers tried to appeal to
the crowd by dressing the mannequins in front of their shops in
"rockabilly fashion" - only sometimes a contradiction in terms.

Install plumbing and I could live in the incredible
 lifeguard towers.

I was going to try and get some good outfit photos of the things
 I made for Mary, but all my motivation was applied to walking
 along the beach and engaging in that most wonderful of all
Spanish pastimes, the siesta. 

A cool shell mosaic on someone's beachfront home.

Impressive sand sculptures on the beach
When supplied with a bucket of water, the Gromit look-
alike on the left was fully functional and filled the pool. 

Another attempt at an outfit photo was interrupted by
Mary trying to save me from getting hit by a truck.
As we came to learn, there is very little distinction
 between street and sidewalk for Spanish drivers; the
 lights, signs, and rules of the road are accepted merely
 as a loose framework of guidelines.

Did I mention that I broke my self-imposed ban on shorts and went
swimming in the sea only to find out later that it was the tail end of


Pretty much by the second of five days, I was growing weary of rockabilly music.  I love the music but everyone has their saturation point; mine came when on the third day (for the third day in a row) I woke up to the music being blasted by the pool party DJs.  Nevertheless, there were some awesome musicians that kept my toes tapping all weekend long - The Tin Stars, The Rip 'em Ups, The Ladykillers, Miss Mary Ann & The Ragtime Wranglers, Rusti Steel & The Star Tones, The Delta Bombers, and many more.

Our room was perfectly situated to get great aerial views of the pool party shenanigans.

The Rip 'em Ups
This band is awesome!!!
We ended up being on the same flight from LA with these
guys and they were so cool - showing us the ropes and showing
us how to put on a KILLER show.  Definitely one of my
 favorite bands of the weekend!

I don't recall the name of this band but their western swing sound was a welcome relief!

Rusti Steel & The Star Tones
A great band and full of generosity; they played their own
awesome set on Saturday and backed Mary up for her set on Sunday.

Mary - even with her eyes closed it was easy to see that big
things are happening for her.  This was the opportunity of a lifetime!!!


Being preternaturally shy, I let too many opportunities to meet new people pass me by.  Fortunately, this blog has opened some channels for me and I got to become acquainted with a couple of folks who follow my blog.  One Aussie minx in particular became - in four short days - a mentor, a chaperone, and a friend.  The most rewarding part of blog writing is connecting with  new people and I count myself very lucky to have made a new pal.  We ended up meeting and spending time with a bunch of great folks and got a world view of the United States; I was surprised and entertained by the foreign fervor for American politics.

Michele, Mary, and Raina
The most fortunate part of the weekend was reuniting
 with old friends and meeting new ones.

I wish I could say that I was that quick on the camera trigger,
 but there is no way I could have planned this photo;
I honestly don't even know what my subject matter was.
Superbly dressed and light as a feather on the dance floor,
  I show this picture not to embarrass, but to ask if you think the
face was for my benefit OR if I just benefited by capturing the face?

The tricolor Swedish fish - Elsa, Sara, and Teresia
Some of the most fun people you'll ever want to know!

Rusti Steel & The Star Tones shining a little light on Mary and Mr. Tiny
Stewart, Andy, Mr. Tiny, Mary, Rusti, and Lloyd

My absolute favorite moment of the weekend came when the only Swede I love more than the Swedish Chef, Sara, performed her most infamous dance move - THE WORM!!!  It's has been two years since I've seen her perform and I am overcome with joy every time. 

Well, that's about it for now.  I'm sure there is plenty I forgot to share with you, but I'm all tuckered out.  Please stay tuned for more Spanish-flavored adventures coming soon and don't forget to like us on Facebook if you haven't already (which I'm sure you have).


Mr. Tiny


  1. Gotta love the worm, or is is centipede?

    1. We always called it the caterpillar, but I guess they don't have caterpillars in Sweden!

    2. Whatever it's called, it is GOOD!!!

  2. Love it! Glad your trip went well. I would've wanted to put in earplugs on day three as well. I love my rockabilly but I need diversity.

    Glad you're back in the country safe and sound. Jet lag takes at least a week for me to recover from.

    1. Thanks!!! Diversity is a key to sanity. Today is the first day that I woke up at a semi-reasonable's wearing off!!!!

  3. A most excellent post - totally brightened up my day and made me giggle! I wish we could all rewind and return to the High Rockabilly...but then, there's always next year! :) Great to meet you (briefly)! Melanie

    1. Thanks!!! It was so fun to meet you guys. I wish we could have hung out more. Next year you'll have to save me dance!!!

  4. i can't wait to see more from your trip! i am one of those who could sit for HOURS and watch someone's vacation slideshow. really, i LOVE IT. especially something as fun as this!

    1. Hahahaha!!! Then you should have been at my house last night, I put everybody through the misery AGAIN!!! Thanks for checking in!

  5. Hey greenlad looks pretty awesome! Can´t wait for the next installment- so glad we had the opportunity to meet and hang out! xx

    1. Maybe we need to do a weekender in Greenland. What do you think?!?!?! You're the coolest! Thanks for everything!

  6. Opps that´s greenland I was referring to- but a green lad might be ok too hahaha!

  7. Can't wait to read your take on Barcelona! Great post!