Blog 331 – 07.03.2015
(Excerpt from Emily – The Little Girl Who Sang Her Song To Anyone Who Came Along)
The last time I saw Emily was about six months before she died. I was working in Livingston, Tennessee and living in my brother’s cabin just north of Jamestown, Tennessee. I had visited my brother Robert and his partner Edwin at their lovely weekend home also just north of Jamestown the year before and Robert had told me about buying a cabin nearby and on another visit up from a work assignment I had in Birmingham, Alabama he had let me stay the night in what I came to affectionately call Brothers Cabin. It was a beautiful place and only my brother with his expensive taste would ever call such a place a cabin. To me it was more like a Swiss chalet or a ski lodge. I took a lot of pictures some outside, one with my Jeep in the picture, some of the kitchen and dining area, one with my laptop open and turned on setting on the dining room table, and several of the downstairs bedroom I slept in with my cowboy boots and hat in the pictures. I took these pictures with my things in Brothers Cabin so I could visualize myself there. Robert had offered to let me live there free if I ever had a work assignment in the area so I immediately put in my request to the Universe for just such an assignment. And about a year later I got the job in Livingston about thirty miles from Brothers Cabin.
The spring and summer before I went to work in Tennessee I had two very well paying and exciting assignments overseas. Four weeks in Ravenna, Italy and seven weeks in Aberdeen, Scotland. I earned more money in those eleven weeks than I did the rest of the year. Admittedly I should have put a large part of it away to pay my income taxes for that year but I am grateful that the extra money made it possible for me to tell Emily to pick out a nice used car and that I would pay for it. She picked out a nice Mazda and had her cousin’s husband Don check it out for her and I believe it was the best car she ever owned.
The Mazda made it possible for her to drive down to Jamestown to spend a couple of days with me in early December of 2011. She slept in the down stairs bed room where I had slept my first night in Brothers Cabin and I slept in one of the two beds in the loft. I built a raging fire for her in the stone fire place and then we drove to Robert and Edwin’s for dinner. Emily took Lola her ukulele and Blondie her Gibson guitar. Emily was to sing for her supper and though her voice was a bit hoarse she mesmerized the three of us for about forty five minutes with old favorites, torch songs, standards and even a few original compositions. Robert was most touched by Emily’s rendition of Randy Newman’s Feels Like Home To Me, one of my favorites. When Emily took a break, we still hadn’t eaten, he called their near neighbors, Ron and Doyle who had a house full of guests for the weekend and they all came over to hear the girl who had a voice that Doyle said reminded him of Janis Joplin.
I requested that Emily sing the “I love the way you call me Baby song” and I told the group that when Robert was three he couldn’t say David so he always called me Baby and how I had since that time loved being called Baby. Doyle said he could tell by my face as Emily sang her second set for the evening that I was so proud of her. I am so grateful in this life I got to play the role of Emily’s dad and that seven month’s before she was called to give a command performance in a much bigger room she gave two of the greatest concerts of her lifetime and that I was privileged and honored to hear and see them both.
Your Fellow Traveler, and Emily’s Dad,