We arrived home in Tulsa at 2:45pm on Friday, April 23. We were met by our families and were uplifted following the 33hr flight from Muscat. When we left Tulsa the trees were just beginning to assume the faint green tinge of spring but now were in full leafed out green. We missed the redbuds this year but made up for it with memories of endless palms.
Our last 2 days in Muscat following the concert at the Crowne Plaza Hotel were spent leisurely but somewhat uncertain until our flight plans were finalized. Little Joe and Ronnie went swimming in the Arabian Sea. I walked along the shore and shot video of people swimming. I was told it was shark infested. We all did a little more shopping. Little Joe bought some new shoes and I bought some miniature rugs.
We had met an Australian blues guy named Mad Dog. He was the total Brit character with bluesy clothes and he was the athletic director at the hotel where we were staying. He had a little band that played some blues covers at clubs and parties around Muscat. The night before we left Mad Dog’s band "The Geckos" had a gig and he invited us come down and jam. It was at a private petroleum club and we needed more clout than Mad Dog had to get in. Even the embassy folks seemed to be unable to get us in. Just as well. We had to leave the Intercontinental Hotel in Muscat at 11am the next morning, April 22, bound for Tulsa.
Little Joe Band saying goodbye to Muscat
At airport gates in the Middle East you are generally bussed to the plane instead of boarding right on to the plane as in the US. As I climbed on board the bus in Muscat I noticed what looked like a good old hippie type among the passengers. He might have been some religious cleric for all I knew but I noticed him. When I left the bus and climbed the stairs onto the plane I worked my way down the center aisle of the plane to my assigned seat and found I was seated next to this hippie guy. He had a long salt and pepper beard and long hair in a ponytail. I took a chance and mentioned they had just seated the 2 hippies next to each other. He said yea and by the way he had enjoyed our concert the other night at the hotel. He turned out to be an Englishman returning from field work in Sudan for Cambridge University where he is employed. David Judge and I had a great conversation as I tried to sum up what the Little Joe Band had just experienced and he discussed his work. He had knowledge of American blues and mentioned favorites Mississippi John Hurt and Snooks Eglin. David was alright in my book. We shared a cup of coffee as we all laid over in Bahrain. David would fly on to London and the band was headed for Jordan.
Tarah and her mom
On my flight from Bahrain to Amman I sat next to a Palestinian mother and daughter. They were returning to their home in Jordan after the daughter, Tarah, had tested for entrance into the University for Women in Bahrain. The band had played a concert at that University the second day of our tour. They were very kind and curious of our impressions of the Middle East during our travels. We really have made a lot of friends on this trip.
Little Joe Band at the Airport in Jordan - Still on our feet
We changed planes again in Amman, Jordan. Thankfully we had time to rescue our luggage from the depths of the Gulf Air baggage handlers. We were warned by airport staff in Jordan that our gear and bags would not be forwarded on to New York as promised but suggest we confirm that our bags were being handled properly. Thanks to one of the managers we were able to find our gear, have it re x-rayed and put on the proper plane to NYC.
The flight from Jordan to New York was a long flight. We all were seated separately into a jammed aircraft that flew into a 60 mph headwind all the way.
Little Joe Band lugging stuff through the airport
We landed in New York JFK at 5:30 in the morning. We collect all our gear and proceeded to clear US Customs then hauled our stuff upstairs and outside. It felt cold after spending a month in the searing heat of Arabia. Jazz at Lincoln Center had arranged to have a fellow with a large van pick us up at JFK and get us over to LaGuardia for our final two flights to Tulsa. We somehow made all the connections and soon found ourselves on the next leg of the trip on a plane to Dallas. I slept most the way. Dallas was easy. We changed planes again but the baggage took care of itself. That flight would make the fifth airplane in 33 hours flying or hanging or rushing through an airport.
Home in Tulsa on day 28 of the Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad 2010
I would like to thank Shana and the rest of the Rhythm Road Crew at Jazz at Lincoln Center for all the hard work they put forth to make this happen for the Little Joe Band.
Thanks to all the US Embassy staff persons along the way who put the details together and got us where we needed to be.
My most special thanks go to my comrades on this trip:
Ron McRorey just kept going. We had to shake him out of bed way too early some days but he was solid as a rock and there at the finish line.
David Berntson was chipper and solid every moment we were gone. His playing was so entertaining to the crowds and his educational skills and easy manner with the kids was invaluable at the schools. His positive attitude was a rock to cling to at times.
But of course Little Joe was the reason I was here in the first place. Little Joe proved himself to be a great Ambassador for America. His blues and his delivery ignited the audiences. I was truly honored to be a part of the tour with him and I hope we get the chance to do it again someday.
Last but not least I want to thank my old friend Richard J. Whetstone, aka Damprock, for his help and direction in posting this journal and his undying support to Little Joe's career over the years. I am forever in his debt.
20 - 21, 2010 - Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
We are in a coasting mode here. Our final scheduled performance on April 20 at the Sultan School was canceled due to an electric power malfunction so we slept in. I was up most the night after the concert at the Crown Plaza Hotel monitoring emails from Jazz at Lincoln Center. They were trying to rebook our flights back to the US due to the travel chaos caused by Eyjafjoell the volcano. I was operating under the Thomas Edison rule of sleep management, sleep an hour then get up and get after it again.
mess with Mother Nature
Originally we were suppose to fly out of Muscat at
one minute past midnight on April 21 flying to London where we would
spend a couple of days bumming around the pubs eating fish and chips
and hoping to hear some Blues bands. David has friends in
London who had volunteered to take us around and show us the sights.
By late afternoon on the 20th we were rested up enough to go do
a little sightseeing. Eskimo Dan and his embassy driver
picked us up and we drove down the coast to the old city of Muscat.
Just about everything outside of the old town has been built since
Sultan Qaboos took the throne in 1970. The old city is built
in a crescent where the mountains come down to the sea. With a gate
at each end of the city, the mountain behind and the sea up front,
Muscat was all but impregnable. Ancient watchtowers pepper
the mountain side. We visited the Omani museum and drove around
taking pictures.It was quite a sight.
Built within the old city of Muscat is the Mattrah Souk. It
is a catacomb of shops filled with vendors selling everything from
frankincense and mire to sandals, clothing, swords and watches.
Little Joe and Ronnie both bought traditional Omani hats and robes.
We wandered around the Souk for a few hours negotiating with
the shopkeepers and buying souvenirs to bring back home. We
got separated a few times and downright lost a couple of times but
managed to get back together for the ride home.
Sultan Little Joe and his Crown Prince
the lamp hoping for a little Arabian Mojo
This morning, April 21st, our travel plans were finalized. In the morning we will fly from Muscat back to Bahrain, where our trip in the Middle East began, then on to Amman, Jordan. In Jordan we will board a direct flight to New York City, avoiding Europe entirely, and then home to Tulsa.
Now it’s time to started packing. I have a lot more stuff now than I came with and I hope it all fits in my suitcase. I have enjoyed keeping this journal and I hope I haven’t bored anyone who chose to follow us on this adventure. It truly was an adventure. I have seen things I never thought I would see and I have met a lot of folks I will never forget. I will add some reflective thoughts once I get home and have had a chance to spend some time with my darling wife Candy, my wonderful daughter Jamie Blue and her family, my grandson Julian (Mr. Big Stuff) and Little Joe’s lovely wife Casey. I have missed them all terribly. Also on the anxious list is my wrong brother Cowboy and the rest of my Okie runnin’ partners.
If anyone reading this journal has comments or would like to reach
me, my email is email@example.com.
If you get a chance, catch the band next time were in your town.
You don't want to miss it. Bye bye for now.
19, 2010 - Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
When I last saw David Berntson last night he was hurting. The long ride to Buraimi had taken its toll on his back. We were all tired by the time we got home. Our driver, Ali, had been up longer than any of us but seemed in pretty good shape when he dropped us off at the hotel.
This morning it was Ali picking us up again and he had a smile on his face. David was doing better too. Our schedule for the day started at the Azzan bin Qais K-12 Private School, about 30 minutes from our hotel. We played a short concert then broke into smaller groups for workshops and discussions about the Blues.
When we arrived mats were arranged on the floor in the main hall near the entrance and the kids were taking their places for the show. By the time we started playing the place was packed with the youngest up close. All the students were in uniform, boys in the traditional white gown and Omani cap and the girls in matching slack outfits. They were all very excited. The teachers worked at getting the crowd calmed down and then introduced us. We played a 45 minute set and that just about put them over the edge.
Joe McLerran plays "Papa's on the Housetop" for the kids
We took a break and ate a lunch provided by the school. During lunch Little Joe was interviewed by a young lady named Karima, a writer for Y-Magazine, the popular Omani magazine dedicated to the new generation. Little Joe told her that if she came to concert tonight he would sing the Blues classic Corrina Corrina. She was so thrilled with the invitation that she let me take her picture.
A select group of students were invited to participate in a Blues workshop. David took a number of kids aside got them started with an introduction to the harmonica. Little Joe, Ronnie and I took the rest, most with acoustic guitars, into a class room and gave them the lowdown on the 12 bar blues form. Later we reassembled both groups and jammed a little Blues song. It was a great morning.
Little Joe & Karima Farid from Y Magazine
Ali our Embassy Driver
Tunes Sound Crew
Qais School Boys
Guitar Work Shop Girls
Guitar Work Shop Boys
We returned to the hotel for a couple of hours then met the Tunes sound crew at the Crowne Plaza Hotel for the concert that evening. What a beautiful night it was. There was a crescent moon with hardly a cloud in sky and the temperature hovering around 80 degrees, humid with a slight breeze. It was perfect. The hotel had set up 500 draped chairs on the lawn with the stage set overlooking the waves of the Gulf of Oman. It was an incredible setting and fitting finale for our tour that had started nearly four weeks earlier.
Following an introduction by US Ambassador to Oman, Richard Schmierer, we took the stage to a standing room only crowd that included many dignitaries including Little Joe’s new friends the Spanish Ambassador and the German Ambassador who had both attended the party a couple of days ago.
I have watched Little Joe out do himself time after time during this tour but tonight he was flawless. He performed a 90 minute set unlike any I have witnessed since I have had the pleasure of working with him. He was simply dazzling. He is without doubt the one of the great Bluesmen of our age. I am so proud to be associated with him and to be a part of his band. David Berntson was fabulous and Ronnie Mac was so on the money it was scary. I wish you all could have been here tonight in Muscat, Oman and shared this evening with us. A goodtime was had by all.
Joe McLerran QuartetTerriplane Blues
This was our last scheduled performance for the Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad but we are a long way from home. Until we sort out the complications caused by that volcano in Iceland and the ash clouds between here and home there will be more to come.
18, 2010 - Buraimi, Sultanate of Oman
Our only real driving trip on the tour so far was when we left
our first country, Bahrain, and drove over the causeway to Saudi
Arabia. That drive took a little more than an hour including
passing through the Saudi border check point when we all were fingerprinted
Today we drove 3 1/2 hours through the desert to Buraimi, northwest
of Muscat. We arrived at 2pm and spent the day at the Buraimi
University. The University has linked up with Cal State Northridge
and spends students there for graduate studies. The enrollment
is 75% women and 25% men. If it wasn't for the Sultan's quota
system there would be hardly any men. It turns out the girls
are smarter than the boys, even over here. Students test out
after high school and that test score determines their college entrance
level. The women far outperform the men.
We were treated to a buffet luncheon in the school cafeteria attended
by faculty and staff and a few students. There was a ping
pong table in the room and David and I were challenged to a game
by a couple of students. I think they tried to let us win,
but we were so miserable we lost any way. It was close.
I don't think I've played a game of ping pong since I was about
12 years old. It was a lot of laughs though. Next we
attended a meeting of the school's English club. Three female
students presented a western culture program that included sections
on music, art and food. America was known for Jazz and fast
gals from the al-Burani University
We performed to a crowd of 150 or so in an auditorium with gym
like acoustics. Mostly girls seated up close on one side and
the boys seated on the other side mostly seated toward the rear.
Everybody was cheering and into what we were doing. About
two thirds of the way through the show a few women moved over to
men's side and took advantage of the empty chairs up front.
The boys continued to hang back. After our performance they
all came on stage for autographs and asked to be photographed with
us. That's not uncommon with the men but little unusual for
the women. I was able to get a picture of three very striking
Omai women who pose for the photo.
Joe McLerran Quartet plays Goin' to Louisana
On the way back to Muscat we stopped at a restaurant
for a late dinner and returned to our hotel. We made it home
around half past midnight. It was a long day.
17, 2010 - Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
We had a meeting this morning at the hotel with Robert and Dan from the Muscat Embassy. Also attending was the sound crew from the Muscat sound company, Tunes Production. We discussed the equipment Tunes was providing and the schedule of events planned for our stay. Tunes will supply the sound for each of our performances.
We left the hotel for a brief tour of Sultan Qaboo's Grand Mosque recently dedicated in 2001. The mosque took over 6 years to build, contains the world's largest chandelier and the world's second largest Persian carpet. It is made of 600,000 tons of Indian sandstone.
Qaboo's Grand Mosque
to the Grand Mosque
resting his feet
at the Grand Mosque
second largest carpet
We then drove to the US Embassy for an interview with the Muscat Daily, the English language daily newspaper. Following lunch we returned to our hotel to prepare for this evenings concert in the Sinbad Ballroom of the Crowne Plaza Hotel hosted by US Ambassador to Oman, Richard J. Schmierer.
That evening we arrived at the Crowne Hotel at 6pm, loaded in and did a sound check. The Crowne Plaza Hotel is a very ritzy place. In a couple of days we are scheduled to play here again for a public concert on the back lawn where the cliffs drop down to the Arabian Gulf. We took a walk to back of the hotel where we saw where they planned to set the stage. What a fantastic view.
As the Ambassador's guests began to arrive, as the mingling and social chit chat got underway we hung out in the hall. We were a little apprehensive with the Ambassador's party in Kuwait still fresh in our memory. Playing for a room full of dignitaries and diplomats is not quite like playing for a room full of college kids or blues enthusiasts.
By the time Ambassador Schmierer warmly introduced us and we started playing we had about 150 guests seated up close to the stage. From the first tune we knew we had them. Little Joe peppered the set with snappy patter describing the songs we were playing and the blues in general. We played an hour long set and, unlike the party in Kuwait, each song was met with thunderous applause and even a few hollers and whistles.
We were mobbed after the show with well wishers and those seeking autographs. Ambassador Schmierer and his wife are among our new true blue fans. We shook a lot of hands and made conversation for half an hour encouraging everyone to return in two days for a repeat performance on the lawn out back. Our buddy Dan (Eskimo Dan) helped load the van and we headed back to the Intercontinental slapping each other on the back.
16, 2010 - Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
How do you like that, the Sultanate of Oman. Oman has been ruled by Sultan Qaboos since 1970. Sultan Qaboos balanced tribal, regional and ethnic interests by presenting to his people the "Basic Statute of the State" in 1996. This is Oman's first written "constitution".
We met an American fellow in the baggage claim area of the airport
last night who works in the electrical grid industry here in Oman.
He spoke of the great modernization progress made in Oman due to
the Sultan's efforts. He said Oman is much more moderate than
Saudi Arabia and has far less in the way of oil recourses. I see
a change in the head gear on men and an occasional turban.
The view from my hotel room shows mountains and white washed architecture
reminiscent of the Mediterranean. In the area below my window
is a compound of broad roofed tents. It is definitely very
We are staying at the Muscat Intercontinental Hotel built right
on the Gulf of
by a palm tree on the Gulf of Oman
Oman. Across the Gulf is Iran. David and I walked down
to the beach this morning and saw a bunch kids swimming out among
the waves. Little Joe was warned before we left Kuwait that
the waters in Oman are shark infested.
We stopped at the local Starbucks for an iced coffee
then returned to the hotel to avoid the heat.
Later in the evening we joined Embassy PAO Robert Arbuckle,"
Eskimo" Dan and Dan's wife Katy for a casual dinner at the
Turkish Grill, a popular Muscat restaurant. We briefly discussed
the bands schedule over the next 5 days. It is a rigorous
schedule including a driving trip on Sunday across the desert to
a University in Buraimi three and half hours away. Our work
week will start early tomorrow with meetings at the Embassy and
a 14 hour day. I've got to get to bed. Good night.
15, 2010 - Kuwait, Kuwait / Muscat, Oman
Today was our last day in Kuwait. We had time
to hang out at the pool, visit the beach and relax in the hotel.
The Radisson Blue, in my opinion, is the nicest hotel we have stayed
In the hotel's lobby is a giant granite ball called a kugel
that is hydraulically floated on a granite base that keeps the ball
turning constantly. The perfectly round ball and base assembly
weight 8 tons, designed and built by Kusser Ganitwerk in Germany.
During the Gulf War, when Iraq invaded Kuwait, the hotel was
occupied by what the hotel staff refers to as thugs and gangs of
youth. They trashed the hotel. After the US liberated
Kuwait and the hotel was to be renovated the owner decided the kugel
would make the perfect centerpiece.
The band was invited to return to the Embassy Post
for the traditional Thursday "Happy Hour". Remember,
Thursday night in the Muslim world is the same as Saturday night
in the US. We took them up on the offer. We checked
out of the hotel in the afternoon, loaded all our stuff in the van
and returned to the Embassy for one more jolly round. Several
of the staff who had been running us around for the past few days
were there and we toasted the times we'd had then said goodbye.
We jumped back into the van and headed back to the airport.
Checking in at the Kuwait airport was a nightmare. It was
very crowded. If we hadn't had the State Dept guys hustling
us through the security and endless check points we would never
had made it. When we finally got to the baggage check in/
get your boarding pass area the sh** really hit the fan.
We are responsible for our overweight luggage charges and believe
you me we have some overweight luggage. David has a road case
full of harmonicas, his harp amp, mikes, effects, power supplies,
you name it. The thing weighs 65 pounds and is a back
breaker. We all take turns breaking our backs with it.
My anvil bass case weighs 50+ pounds, but it is the size of a small
refrigerator. Luckily we had only been hit once before with
excess baggage charges. Not so lucky here.
The little gal at the counter wouldn't let me pay her. I had
to go to the cashier. I rushed to the cashier but they would take
a credit card. I had purposely spent all my Kuwaiti Dinars at the
Happy Hour and the cashier would take US dollars. Our Embassy
expediter was at my side the whole time so we rushed outside of
the passenger area to an ATM where I was able to use my bank card
to get a fist full of Dinars. I had to go back through security
then I raced back to the counter where the gal reminded me I had
to pay the cashier. Back to the cashier but get this he couldn't
make change for a 10 dinar note. Between the three cashiers
on duty they were finally able to give me my change and I was on
my way. By the time we got to the gate they were loading.
I didn't want to spend another sleepless night in an airport and
was happy when I was sitting on the plane.
Our seating assignments were screwy. David, Ronnie and I were
Patterini in his Eshimo Joe's T-shirt
How could we not like this guy
together but they had seated Little Joe about 6 rows
ahead of us all by himself. They served a chicken curry
dinner with chick pea salad and a rubbery desert thing. I
was hungry so I ate it. When we landed in Muscat, Oman we
learned that Little Joe didn't get any dinner. He was asleep
when the food cart rolled past him and woke up while it just a couple
rows away. He asked if he could have some dinner and they
said, "NO". When he asked for a cup of coffee they
said, "NO". As we passed through the security for
arriving passengers and customs Joe was not a happy camper.
We were finally met outside the airport by our new embassy guy,
Dan Pattarini. He was wearing an Eskimo Joe's T-shirt. Turns
out he has an aunt living in Ponca City, OK. For all you folks
reading this journal who don't live in Oklahoma, Eskimo Joe's is
a beer joint in Stillwater, OK, home of, among other things, Oklahoma
State University. Eskimo Joe's is more famous for T-shirts
then they are for their beer.
Dan took us and all our gear to the Intercontinental Hotel in Muscat.
We checked in and went to bed exhausted. Tomorow we have a day off!!
14, 2010 - Kuwait City, Kuwait
Today we hung around the hotel until 4:30 when the
van arrived to take us to Kuwait University for a concert in the
evening. Kuwait University is a public school similar to a
state university in America. In fact it is the only public
university in Kuwait. Established in 1966, five years after
gaining independence from Great Britain, Kuwait University offers
a full curriculum including schools of art, law, medicine and engineering.
We met William the sound guy and his crew at the University
for our sound check. The system was already set up and our
gear was on stage and in no time at all we had dialed the in levels
and set the stage for the performance. The show was held in
the 500 seat auditorium of the Law School. By the time we
played we had a full house with people standing in the back of the
theater. They all had a good time and so did we.
Joe closes the show at Kuwait University
with Homesick James' "You Gotta Move"
Our new friend Salama Ayyad, our right hand embassy
man in Kuwait who's been with us every day here in Kuwait City,
suggest we get a midnight snack at the Canary restaurant, a working
mans joint with the best sharma sandwiches yet. We took the scenic
route home driving past a local landmark, the Kuwait Towers, then
we headed back to the hotel.
Kuwait Towers at night
April 13, 2010
- Kuwait City, Kuwait
I woke up this morning to the sound of thunder. It made me
homesick Tulsa. I looked out my window and low and behold
it was raining. The hotel desk clerk told us rain in Kuwait
is very unusual. I'd been kidding David because
he had packed an umbrella for a tour in the desert. It just goes
to show you.
We taped a TV show this morning inside the great big wooden ship
by Kuwait Marine Museum at the hotel. The TV crew used 4 cameras
and one was on a rolling rail track like the ones they use in Hollywood.
It looked like a very professional crew to me. There must
have 20 of them and I couldn't understand a word they were
saying. There was a lot of hanging around while they set the
lighting and wired us all for sound. The host of the show was a
gal named Emon and she was going to ask all the questions.
Once they started rolling she started asking questions. Little
Joe had trouble understanding just what she was asking him but he
kept the answers rolling. They told us they are planning to film
our gig at Kuwait University tomorrow and edit the two pieces together.
They promised to send a copy of the show after it airs. The embassy
folks said they would see that we get the DVD.
the big boat Little Joe and I wait for the TV crew to start rolling.
After that we drove across town and did an interview for a local
Kuwait FM radio station. We arrived late because the TV thing
took so long. We talked with the DJ about the blues, the band,
our travels and plugged the concert at the University scheduled
for the next night. The station was located in the upscale Marina
Mall. In Bahrain as here in Kuwait we were incouraged to "go
check out the mall". We have malls in Tulsa and all across
the USA. That just didn't do anything for us. Now we were forced
to visit the mall and it was what we might have expected. The food
court had Popeye's chicken, Baskin Robins ice cream and the shopping
look about like every mall I've ever been in.
At 5:00 the van picked us up and took us to the
US Embassy for a garden party at the residence of the US Ambassador
to Kuwait Deborah Jones. The security at the embassy was
the tightest I have seen so far on our trip. They took
each of us individually through the examination room and checked
out our stuff quite thoroughly. They x-rayed my bass then confiscated
my camera which was returned to me in time to film the performance.
The Embassy was built by the Kuwaitis after the Gulf War thanks
in part for the USA kicking the Iraqis out of their country in 1991.
No US tax dollars spent here. Kuwait donated 40 acres of land and
paid $100,000,000 to have the Embassy built. It is beautiful.
The surrounding grounds with date palm groves and landscaped
lawns are magnificent. Ambassador Jones gave me a tour of
the official residence and the craftsmanship throughout is excellent.
It turned out that Mrs. Jones and I have a mutual friend in
Boulder, CO. Tom Wasinger, a guitar player I had played with
in Boulder, was the husband of her best friend. I learned
that Tom had won a Grammy in 2009 for Best Native American Music
Album. Mrs. Jones commented, "It's a small world
isn't it?" That's putting it mildly.
A quick reality check is the miles of razor wire atop the surrounding
wall. We're not in Boulder anymore Toto.
For tonight's performance a festival style stage was set up
on the tennis courts which had been covered in Astroturf. The
embassy provided a real nice sound system and crew lead by William
the sound guy. Tables and seating for about 150 had been set
up with across the court. We were scheduled to play at 7:30
but the weather seemed threatening. After a lengthy sound
check we mingled with the crowd and met several young Kuwaitis who
had been invited and were part of a student exchange program set
up by the US/Kuwaiti Embassies. They were excited with the
opportunity to visit the US and we expressed our excitement of our
visit to be visiting their country.
At show time it started to sprinkle, not like what we see in Tulsa
but enough to get things wet and force us to cover the equipment
with plastic trash bags. After a brief delay we took to the
stage. Little Joe decided to open the show with "I Get
the Blues When it Rains". I thought it was very appropriate
but the mood was damped by the rain. A lot of people left
for higher ground and the delay caused some of the kids to leave
early because they had school in the morning. Still we had
a good time and we will treasure the experience. Leaving the
embassy we noticed a pill box with a machine gun barrel protruding
and a soldier at the ready. We returned to our seemingly secure
hotel for a good night sleep.
The Little Joe Quartet
starts the show with
"I Get the Blues When it Rains"