Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Texas Tour: the hosts

In my last post, I mentioned that selling merchandise isn't the most important thing; rather, people are the most important thing.

There were some key roles people played on the house show tour, from host and encourager, to chef and fire-builder, to Logistics Manager. Though I could write one post for each person, our hosts deserve what I hope they will hear as a thank-you through these thoughts.

Without a doubt, our hosts were outstanding! I only knew a couple of them personally, yet they were all eager to host us, anticipating our arrival just as much as were were excited to arrive. Our hosts not only had meals ready for us, but also took the time to sit and enjoy that time with us, giving us a space for rest and conversation before each show.

In Richardson, the Spiegels ushered us in, letting us rearrange their furniture, cooking venison chili for us, and taking time to send us off at the end of a long, tiring evening and pray with and over us. We were moved deeply with their care and concern for our lives after such a short time of knowing us. The Kittens in Waco gave up their living room and all its walkable space, then welcomed us into the morning with homemade scones and cranberry cake with lemon-glaze - a more than gracious send off! The Vignes' and the Listenbees had their living rooms cleared and prepared for our "stage", making our unloading and set-up so much easier. And in both of their locations, the listeners were especially eager, connected to our stories and our songs in a way that gave us courage that all of this is a good thing.

Why do all these small details matter? Because the alternative could be staying in hotels each night, paying for fast food because there's no time or money left for a sit-down meal, and finding yourselves sick and tired at the end of the tour because the only people you've really talked to is each other, and never did you have enough time with someone in your audience to actually hear their feedback.

I've only toured for one week. That's nothing.

But I can tell you that the presence of people and their homes and their lives made us feel welcomed and loved. And being welcomed and loved could be what life's all about.

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