Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Good luck is a strange phenomenon. Is it random? Are there only a certain number of people on this planet that are subject to constant good luck? Are there people that are unlucky? I am not sure that I have the answers to any of those queries. I myself have experienced life like the rest of us. Sometimes I felt like I had fallen on bad luck and then there were times in my life that it seemed the luck came my way...in small doses…. but I think I recognized it as luck. The fortunate situations that have come our way at the Ranch always come with sign. John and I are fond of saying, “Ahhhhh, an auspicious sign.” They are little things, like someone showing up just when we needed them. Luck for me personally, has shown itself in many ways. It can be good or bad fortune in my life caused by accident or by chance that (gasp) is out of my control. I have been fortunate enough to know when my struggles come with a challenge, the lessons are always rewarding. You know, the universe doing for me what I could not do for myself. A gentle nudge in other in other words.

When I was 21, I couldn’t get out of my own way. I was is a less than savory situation at home but around every corner was an opportunity to change. I remember I was sitting on a grassy hill starring out into space lost in thought and unable to see the change that must occur. I actually heard my name being called and looked down (I still don’t know why I did not look up) and a four leaf clover was looking at me. I couldn’t believe it because I always thought that was for someone who was lucky and I was not feeling lucky. My head stayed down and I proceeded to find 16 more four leaf clovers. As small as that was…..it gave me hope. I did change my life and have been changing ever since. For the record…..I have hundreds of four leaf clovers. Turns out, my grandmother used to find them and I have sisters that can find them. There is a scientific method to finding them but I choose to believe that every time I find one….it is an auspicious sign. Am I lucky? Or do I need all of the luck I can get? Who knows…………………

I found my first four leave clover of 2010. I was walking back to my office and I heard someone whisper my name. I looked down (I still don’t know why I don’t not look up) and a four leaf clover was looking at me.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Thirteen years have passed since we opened the doors to the ranch for the first time. Without missing a beat...we opened up the Ranch a few weekends ago to one of Jorma's specialty workshops. Though small in numbers, the group was over the top in the spirit they brought to our little piece of heaven. Winter seems to be gone (hopefully) and despite the overcast sky, everything about the light that shines through the hearts of musicians broke through that platinum ceiling. The mix of students came from all over the U.S. They came in from Los Angeles, Massachusetts, Vermont, New York, Delaware, Mexico City, North Carolina, Florida and South Carolina. Some of them were repeat offenders and others were new to the Ranch. By the time Saturday rolled around it was as if we’d all known each other for years. That is the magic of the Fur Peace Ranch. We are doing it again this weekend with Stefan Grossman, Larry Coryell and Jorma. This time the group is large and though we’ve just gotten underway...the magic is clear. The students have all been here over the last 13 years at one time or another. Some of them know each other and some are just meeting for the first time. Four are new to the Ranch but have been taken in by others and they are all off playing guitar after an amazing lunch prepared by Chef Chris. Pot roast taco's with Chipoltle brownies for dessert!

Years ago when we had the idea to open the Fur Peace Ranch Guitar Camp, we were moved by the land to build something. It did not happen over night. I was still in the throws of my life choices at that time. Eventually as I became healthier my eyes opened, my heart grew and I was able to see that it was the land that brought us here and it was time to learn some unknown lesson. It was in 1991 shortly after we first moved here...I went for a drive trying to escape my misery, but there I was, stuck with me trying to get a way from me. Every turn, around every corner of the winding roads that is my home, was more stunning than the last. The puffy white clouds, the rolling hills, the cows, the grass so green it hurt my eyes...and this voice that kept at me so lovingly. I heard, “Look at this beauty. Get out of your hurt and look at what is yours.” I finally gave in. Instead of fighting this internal struggle, I started to sail around the corners. I was laughing and gasping for air at the beauty that is this land that kept showing itself to me. When I reached the end of the road I was on, I turned back around and sailed back the way I came to be sure I wasn’t having a mental break down. I wasn’t having a break down. I believe that I had become so sick and tired of being sick and tired with myself, that there was no where else to turn except into the arms of these hills that were wrapping themselves around me like a mothers love.

Everything is connected. The land, the Ranch, the dream, the students, the music, the food, the land...and the circle keeps swirling every session...every year. Onward............