June 1999

Dear e-Fisherfolk,

Talk about a melting pot! We’re here in Calgary, Alberta at a children’s festival and the pot’s running over. As we walk down the streets, we’re exposed to all kinds of people, all kinds of weather and all kinds of food. It’s still Spring up here. Tulips are up and trees are blooming. It’s cold and aromatic in the mornings. Light rain mixes with sunshine and we’ve even watched a Chinook wind blow into the city. We were told by a member of the Cree tribe that Chinook means, “Warm wind that blows in from over the mountain”. On a cab ride to the hotel Ezra met a driver from Punjab. The driver was playing country western music on the radio. When asked if the music was for himself or his passengers, he said that he liked country music, but offered Indian music as an alternative. Nusrat Ali Khan then sang as the cab slowed down and the driver translated. By the end of the drive the fare had just about doubled.

It’s hard to imagine all the different ethnic restaurants available for our temptation and enjoyment. Ethiopian, Greek, Russian, Italian, Japanese, Mongolian, Alberta steak houses serving world famous Alberta Beef, and even Mexican restaurants line the streets. We generally stay away from the Mexican restaurants because we know better. Our favorite so far was a Turkish restaurant called Istanbul. It’s run by a family from Turkey and we traded one of our CDs for a tape of a Turkish pop singer. Look for us to be covering some of her tunes in the future. Not.

The children’s festival has been great. It’s a melting pot in itself. Acts from all over the world have gathered to entertain the children of Calgary. We’ve played 4 shows and have appeared on TV on a show called The Big Breakfast. We did find time to see some of the other acts and we particularly enjoyed The Firehouse Circus, Michel Lauziere, Visible Fictions production of The Red Balloon and the shadow puppetry of Richard Bradshaw. What was really exciting about these performers was that their shows worked on adult as well as children’s levels simultaneously. If you hear of any of these performers in your area try to make a point of going to see them.

We’re going to be in Philadelphia for a week that will include two of our favorite shows (Concert Under the Stars and Longwood Gardens) and the singing of our National Anthem at a Phillies game! The Phillies will be playing an inter-league game against the World Champion New York Yankees and the stadium will be rocking. Keith is beside himself. Really, he is! There’s two of him standing next to me.

That’s enough!

best fishes
Ezra and Keith

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