I know it sounds hard to believe, but my travel plans have been foiled at every turn for the last two weeks. Twice, I’ve made a date to visit the Gardiner Public Library and twice, the weather has been unpredictably messy. When someone told me there was going to be some live music nearby on Valentine’s Day, my restless spirit shouted “you bet!”
I imagined we’d be going to a hip locale with 10 taps of local microbrews. But we weren’t going to any such place. We were going to the Litchfield Sportsmen’s Club on the Hallowell Road in Litchfield and it was “Country Sunday.”
I like “country” music. Not the kind played on the radio today, but the old-timey kind that twangs and weeps. Music that takes you to a place you’ve never been before. It’s enjoyable to go somewhere and hear any kind of live music, really, and if you can have a bite to eat while you listen, it’s even better. Cozy-like, not a big auditorium with $12 beers and people stepping all over your feet.
It was cozy at the Litchfield Sportsmen’s Club. We got there after the first act had started; it was Tim Sprague & The Murky Water Band. I think they’re from the Boothbay area and have played a hootenanny or two around that part of the state.
The club is a simple hall with some lights strung up on the ceiling. There was “twanging” and people were dancing, both line dancing and couples dancing. By couples who actually knew how.
There was one couple who were especially talented and there was not one song to which they could not swing. I was envious, what with being from the Billy Idol “Dancing with Myself” generation.
Handy and I did our best, taking a trip around the dance floor. Then we had a couple of grilled hot dogs and some French fries. Red hot dogs because (repeat after me) it was Valentine’s Day.
They were delicious.
Patrick Shepherd sang solo after Murky Waters and then Pat Healy & Wendy Harrington sang together. We didn’t stay for the last two sets, which was John Whitman and Murky Waters again.
A sign posted by the kitchen said they have monthly public suppers, with the added bonus of a “music jam” after the meal. That sounds good too. The next one is scheduled for March 19.
Litchfield does not have a Carnegie Library, so I wasn’t able to cross one more off my list. But they’ve got a regular helping of country music served with tasty home style food; they have a few people who still know how to dance.