He’s back!

October 13, 2010

Leo is back.

Leo's travel accomodations

He went on a trip of his own… I mean he hid and stayed in Nashville without me! He told me he wanted to keep working on the recording… I think he might have liked Mitzi, the golden retriever at the studio but I did not push it. I’m just glad he is back… so today he arrived, regular mail, $2.41 one way trip from Nashville to Altadena. Leo!!!!

Leo upon opening the box


I opened the box and there he was, looking as sweet as ever… I almost cried. Now all is right. Been feeling a bit bent out of shape for the last little while. With him back with me it seems that things are right again.

I rode into Altadena through the mountains again. I promised myself to take photos next time I ride through as this area is so beautiful. I have been riding the bike skipping the third gear, and it is workable. The engine has enough range so it does not feel like a big drop in power going from 2nd to 4th. Today was the third ride up the mountain and it is actually strange to start to know the curves and what’s ahead and what to expect as opposed to face new roads on a daily basis.

I have been missing the road, constant motion, seeing new things everyday, new people everyday. But today when I looked at the maps and the weather, I realized the territory is getting smaller. Snow in Montana this week-end. 30 degrees nights in Utah. Rains and storms in Tennessee. I could ride up the coast… but honestly, I don’t want to.

This voyage brought constant evolution. An education. The classic cliché of the butterfly…

Now this album… a tie back to “real” life. I fight the ties. I love the creation. Duality. The guitar is here, like a boat anchor, like my favorite thing, like the freedom to create it brings and the added responsibility and worry.

I rode back from Passadena as the night fell, on the freeway, among the madness of the cars, flashes of tail lights blazing in the dark, speed, tears in my eyes from the wind. Somehow I often think of my mom when I ride on the freeway at night. Not sure why. The presence of danger maybe. I mix speed and prudence, like a exotic drink in a dance bar.

I veer off of the 210 up onto Lowell then west on Foothill then North onto Big Tujunga road. I keep wondering what the hell is a Tujunga. Another amazing night. The moon is iridescent in the sky. There is more traffic than I have seen since it’s around 8 PM instead of 10 PM or 1AM…

Tonight Alice In Chains plays in Los Angeles and I would have just died to catch that. $80 to get in the pit… I don’t have that kind of means right now. I even thought maybe I could just go and hang around the venue to feel the vibe… but no, I’m up here. So I’m thinking of them up on stage while I slalom the curves of the Angeles Highway in the dark, under the moon.

A tunnel… Perfectly rounded shape. The sound reverberates loudly and everything seems so bright after being out in the night as the walls reflect the light coming from the bike. Then I imagine what it would be like if the headlight went dead… I mean, It is bound to happen some time. But it shines on and I get out the the short tunnel.

A few evenings ago we were talking about motorcycle headlights. About the fact that on this bike the headlight is attached to the frame, not the forks so when you are in a curve the light is directed outside your trajectory… That was a revelation. I never had considered that. It explained the disorientation I felt in sharp turns at night as the light would not be on my path but outside the curves. I realized that my eye would follow the light, then I’d get off the curve, then correct then get off, then correct… so tonight I focused on the curves, the reflectors, not the light and the ride got smoother those tight curves.

I leaned down on the tank. There you feel the whirr of the road, there I am out of the wind, there I find more engine heat, and there I find myself in a position closer to the road, the curves, the front wheel. My arms relax there as I am not holding on so much as just resting my hands on the bars. The engine. The sound. It won’t be Alice in Chains but it does rock.

The last bit of the mountain is new tarmac, bright center lines with lots of reflectors. I get to fifth, accelerate. In the distance there are now lights appearing, Palmdale. A ribbon of car headlights and tail lights stream in the distance. It is a dark poetry. Life. Humanity running on the paved paths that lead them on towards the future, relentlessly. The highway there has pushed itself between the shoulders of two hills. I get on the ramp up to the Freeway, 2, 3-4 then 5th, floor it. Yeah. Again the intoxicating mix of speed and extreme vigilance. Brake lights flash. Major reduction of speed. Police lights. An accident. Two cars, debris all over. One car is just destroyed. How in hell can you do that? I speed away from the wreckage. Don’t really want to look.

I get to Lancaster. The house glows in the night. There is a flag that hangs proudly by the front door. Motion detectors light up the front of the garage and the door opens. I feel good. I had a good day. I have no exact plans at this point about the How and What of my life to come. Some clues, some promising notes but nothing concrete. Right now I literally sit on a blank page. It is unsettled, unscripted, fickle, in constant evolution. It’s good. It’s the unknown. I have awakened in the night wondering where I was feeling unreality. I wonder about money and luck running out or about the bike dying and how that would make me truly homeless. But at the same time I’ve been so blessed. So supported. I have no excuses. I can’t really do anything else than motor on. Full throttle.

I love the people around here. I love the vibe. The immensity of possibilities here. So much talent and souls in one place…

and Leo is back… something had gone awry in the Force when he was not there. But he’s back now… we’re all back together, Leo, the bike and me. What could possibly stop us?


4 Responses to “He’s back!”

  1. salonunidad Says:

    I love this post, I love you, Leo and yes I am living vicariously through the journey of you on the bike and in the studio.

    I — Rhea, realize that every moment counts and is not to be wasted in haggaling (sp) about details. Paulo Coehlo states: ‘Don’t bother answering the critiques, don’t waste your time, don’t take it personal, just do your work, your dream, what you are created to do” and so we artists blessed and cursed with a gift march on.

    I’m totally with you all the way D….and I need to talk to you soon again like the other night, its way to early for you now, I awoke at 4:17 this morning after heading to bed at 9:15 with a a plethora of emotions and questions.

    I will create a post from some of the this post and press it on salonunidad….so happy you got Leo back, my fav pic is of you and him, lets face it you two can change the world and who would of thunk it, G-d works in mysterious ways….


  2. salonunidad Says:

    ….send me a photo of your best nightrider racy bike and I will add to my post….or suggest one from your blog and Ill grab it….

  3. I guess EVEN LEO needed some time to relax by himself after his CONSTANT CRITICAL REVIEW of your original tracks, mixes and engineering! The guy must have been EXHAUSTED.

    You two didn’t have a contractual dispute, did you?


  4. steveslaughter Says:

    Glad Leo has returned. I was beginning to worry that you may have had a contractual dispute! He was obviously exhausted at the end of the monster recording sessions and after reviewing the mixes, decided that it was safe to leave it in the hands of the professionals. Good to see you together again.

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