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On my way to a festival up in Canada

a volunteer met my plane — a foggy day

she’s there to drive me to a house in town

where I’m assigned to stay

I am sleep deprived and cranky

all I want is to lie down

in the car she casually says

“I don’t make left hand turns”

as we drive into town

She explains she just got her license

turning left makes her too scared

so we’ll have to take a right, do a U-turn

she laughed don’t worry I’ll get you there

We finally arrive at our destination

we knock, a young girl opens the door

we ask for her parents

she says they’re at work

and what are we here for?

I explain I’m the American musician

who is staying with them for a while

“Come in! You can have my room!”

she says with a shy friendly smile

So we drag my bags down a long hallway

she flings her bedroom door open wide

it’s a room cluttered wall to wall to wall with . . . stuff

‘I’ll clean it up right now!’ she cried

This little girl is on her way to being a hoarder

I tell her on second thought I’m gonna go

I noticed a hotel a couple blocks back

but the little girl said, “No no no!”

I tell her sweetheart I am too cranky and tired

Tell your parents thank you for me

The volunteer drives to me back to that hotel

Where I fell asleep immediately . . .

I wake up with my cellphone ringing

the festival office wanted to know what was wrong?

they said the family waited for my arrival

all . . . day . . . long

The woman who can’t make left hand turns

has other problems, I guess

turns out she brought me to —

yup, the wrong address

What if the parents had come home to find

a cranky American folksinger sleeping in their daughter’s bed?

ah, they’re Canadians — they’d probably laugh

make me dinner instead

Or at least offer me a cup of tea

and when I had my fill

I’d wave goodbye to Canada

‘cause I’m on my way to Hooterville

I don’t make left hand turns

Come in, you can have my room!

The carpet is soft as a dream

I can’t see in the dark


Christine Lavin: vocal and guitar

Daniel Glass: percussion

Steve Doyle: bass

Brian Bauers: harmonies

Madelyn Bauers: baby sounds