Tokyo, October 2017

Kauai, April 2018

I love getting out of town. But it comes at a cost. You miss gigs.

This time I’m missing Justin Townes Earle. And Lambchop. And Ashley Davies doing Throttle.

But sometimes travel includes gigs, when the planets align and you and your current crush (Ron Sexsmith) perhaps are in London at the same time.

Or when Bob Dylan and Paul Simon do a show in an amphitheatre outside of Boston. Not too far. Maybe 100km. Or was it miles?

Sometimes fate weighs in. I remembered Jackson Browne’s birthday on the day  (October 9) and idly clicked on his website.

And there were his next few shows.

In Japan.

They corresponded with my dates in Japan. There were two shows in Tokyo.

They corresponded with my nights in Tokyo.

I looked up the venue.

A concert hall in Shibuya. I looked up my accommodation.

A hotel in Shinjuku. Not that far away. Walkable even.

I clicked on the ticketing site.

Sold out!

Bummer, but also relief. Relief at not having to find the concert hall.

Pacific Coast Highway, 2010.

Back in Melbourne six months later I’m preparing for a different sort of holiday.

Meeting up with an overseas friend who’s had a “not great” diagnosis.

We decide to meet part-way between our two countries, somewhere in the Pacific.

A week or two before I leave Jackson Browne is playing in my hometown, but I don’t go.

The tickets that remain are $100 and way up in the gods.

In Tokyo it would have been novel; but I’ve seen him many times in Melbourne.

In Kauai, the northernmost inhabited island of Hawaii, I reunite with my Canadian friend, reminiscing about our last trip eight years ago. On that trip we drove down the Pacific Coast Highway all the way from Seattle past San Francisco.

We were definitely in Jackson Browne country.

Stormy sunrise on Kauai, 2018.

In Kauai our beach holiday turns into a stormy one. We resort to vodka and Scrabble.

And then we got the emergency warning calls. Not once, but twice we are woken by Hawaii’s automated emergency warning system.

The roads flooded, the river rose.

Luckily, we had got in some stocks of food and water … and vodka, before the deluge.

Stereo Story #663

Louise Maskell has been surrounded by other people's words for some 30 years. Occasionally she strings together a few of her own. Otherwise it's all about the music and tall skinny dogs. She misses The Continental.