X-Train Wrapping It Up Down Under–Mark Miracle’s Guest Blog

Final days of the tour and it's beginning to get bittersweet. We are anxious to get home but really enjoy this part of the world. We spent the last 3 days or so in Caloundra, AUS at a 5th floor condo overlooking the ocean.

It was donated to us by a friend of Mark and Peters. She (Kay) is a participant at the banjo camp that we are playing at over the weekend. Although located on the Sunshine Coast, it was cloudy and warm the entire time. Not quite what we had in mind, but we made the best of it by walking the beach, playing in a warm ocean and checking out the local sites.

A fellow named Greg called us up out of the blue and came over for a picking session, which was a lot of fun and we took the opportunity to pick his brain regarding the area. On the rainy days, we practiced tunes, watched movies and broke everything we could get our hands on. Kay insisted that we use anything and everything we could find in the condo as our own…mistake.

The current tally of breakage is one glass bowl, one Pyrex double boiler lid (with stainless handle), one bottle of wine (oh the humanity!) and I used the wrong soap in the dishwasher. Note to self - If the bottle says "dishwashing" on it, it's not necessarily intended for the dishwasher…hmmm.

We are now at the Melaney Banjo Camp! We arrived to the sound of banjos oozing from every corner and so we immediately went scrambling in search for our rooms! After the shock wore off, we did a "meet & greet" with folks, ate a great dinner and played a show during the opening festivities. We ran into Kay, who bravely let us use her condo, and proceeded to inform her of the damages. With the look of fear on her face, she uttered that it was ok and not to worry, or as they say - "no worries".

It was all in good fun and we actually replaced everything we broke and even left her our remaining unbroken bottle of wine…which we actually brought to her here at the camp….and proceeded to drink it with her and some new friends.

So the tour is wrapping up and soon we will back in the USA! We have a few workshops to head up here and even one or two mando and guitar lessons for non-banjo (unbanjo?) inquiries. Perhaps as events unfold, I will write a few lines…you never know what can happen at Banjo Camp! Once back in the USA, I am looking forward to continuing playing music with X Train and The Sonoran Dogs!

Also, I am conducting ongoing Wernick Method Jam Classes (signup at DrBanjo.com!) in Phoenix, AZ on Jan 7th and 14th and I have sessions at Bluegrass festivals as well! Information is on Pete Wernicks website and you can follow me on FaceBook at www.facebook.com/marxmando.  Now, where are my earplugs?

Watch a video of X-Train in Harrietville, AUS - HERE

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