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Milwaukee TMB Spring 2000     “the final trawl”

  It has been good and warm, enjoying the feeling of rounding out a 26-year and 40-year collaboration, with the audiences who have supported us all these years.  We’re not making a big deal that this is our last run, but folks seem very aware of it: standing ovations everywhere, long and loud, a few tears and many personal thank-you-for-the-years, afterwards.

     And a scare this afternoon.  Annie caught her heel in a track and fell down two stairs, piling into the audience-chairs, during the sound-check.

     She pulled a muscle in her thigh and whanged her head (not hard, she said) but it shook her up.  – Me too.  She tried to swallow it and keep on going – too quick: it kept on coming out – she’d burst into tears and have to stop singing.

     The lovely staff at this Audubon Center really supported her with cold packs and aspirin – they even found some Epsom Salts for her bath tonight.

     She didn’t seem worried.  She’ll hurt tomorrow, though, and we’ll deal with that.

     We chose Johnny Stewart, Drover for our encore.  As we were coming through the second verse (she played flute) I was thinking about how much I’d enjoy the way our voices would feel/sound when we sang “Johnny doesn’t spend much time in town/ Impatient for the Wet to be over” etc.  And we started it, and yes, it was that same warm feeling/sound; we all knowing, loving Johnny, appreciating him…

     And the penny dropped and I heard a little voice in my head say: “No more, Robin, no more.  After this year no-one will be here who can make this feeling with you.  No-one will build their particular loving landscape with you again.”

     And I could barely sing the rest of the song – choked on some of it, blinked away some, and while Ed and Ann (as always) carried me through, I finally began to feel the loss.