First off, Steve is in better spirits today. We (Joel, Christine, Lillian, Robert Satiacum and I) visited him at the hospital a few hours ago. He spelled out that he wanted Robert to play Eric. We told him not to worry, that he was Eric and that we could and would finish the movie with the footage we already had.
Robert is on the path to becoming a medicine man. He gave Steve a medicine pouch and said some words of spiritual encouragement. We left with Steve a picture stand that Gail had put together, containing the newspaper article from The Olympian with Steve’s picture and a cast/crew photo that we all signed. This was a good gift. Already, as we were waiting to take the elevator down, Lillian spotted him showing it off to a nurse.
Joe did not show up this morning. We shot what we could without him, worried about what happened. He was supposed to check in with Lillian at 6am if he was still on the road. He didn’t. We waited. Lillian kept calling his house. No answer.
He called around noon and it turns out he had been sleeping. Much deserved and appreciated. He left at a grim hour, and had been thinking his whole drive back that his best friend was not long for this world. Joe doesn’t have a cell phone, but Lillian had left word with Joe’s girlfriend back in Spokane that Steve had improved. When Joe got the good news, he was able to rest.
He’s on his way back now and will hopefully arrive in time for us to shoot some stuff — and in time to see Steve before visiting hours end at 8 p.m. In the downtime, Robert conducted a nice ceremony with several of us crew and we talked about what Steve’s performance and presence has given to each of us. Robert also sang what he called ‘the power song’ which the visit with Steve had inspired him to remember. In Robert’s booming voice, it is indeed a powerful chant. Joel recorded it and will put in on CD so Steve can listen to it in the hospital. I hope he draws power from it, and strength from the flood of goodwill that, since yesterday, has been flowing nonstop.