The International Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough Tennessee is a singularity. This little town, the oldest in the state, is soaked in history from the revolutionary war forward but besides its charm, it is the nexus for toilers in the craft of the tale. We’re talking here about 3 days of intense and true “stump tellin”- the ancient and uniquely human activity of weaving a separate reality out of language motion and facial expression in front of an audience. I am deeply grateful to be back here after many years to simply sit, listen and be enveloped by the stories of true masters like Jay O’Callahan, Donald Davis, Kathryn Tucker-Wyndham, Bill Miller, Ed Stivender and so many others. I have a history here too, as do some of my colleagues at IDEAS, as does IDEAS itself and I’ll tell you that story some other time. For now, it’s a cool fall midnight, I am happily sated by the characters and evoked presence of a different reality and I am looking forward to additional stories.