Our intrepid Miss Linda went to Cobh
In response to a sign from above
An enormous book store
On the far western shore
Who says money can't buy ya love?
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Sunday, July 13, 2008
from the entry for "Belfast Lough":
"It's scenery, on both shores, is strikingly beautiful. An illiberal or prejudiced stranger, who enters Ireland by sailing up to Belfast is confounded by the brilliance of both the natural and the artificial features, and is liable under the rebound of feeling, to imagine that all he has heard of Ireland's bogs and poverty is a jest and that he is entering one of the most charming and opulent countries in the world."
from the entry for "Dublin Bay" (I merged the two readings together)
"It exhibits so noble a combination of scenery and affords at different points such attractive varieties, such fine interchanges of the soft and august as to have won for it the fame of being a reduced copy or large miniature of the Bay of Naples; and thought destitute of features which correspond to either the natural sublimity of Vesuvius or the artificial power of the remains of Pompeii, it possesses a sufficiency of charm to justify the assertion of a celebrated (Scottish) writer of acknowledged taste that a (British) admirer of the picturesque will regard the prospect of the bay as ample recompense for the expense and trouble of a trip to Ireland."
There once was a lass with pink hair
Her longing to be a castle bard,
She scribes for O.C.
an alto she be
Our Rhonda will do what she dare.
Young Bernie did everything choral
And helped Karen with everything floral
he Took his choir on a tour
and now he is poor
'Cause he needed some surgery oral.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
It has been a fantastic tour, with loads of sightseeing, great company, and cool concert venues galore. Happy trails to everyone!
Sunday, July 6, 2008
The concert last night was a great experience and the best way to end the tour and our performances. I'm not sure how many people were there but my guess is about 400-450 including the people from the Voices of Limerick who shared the concert with us. Everyone was so appreciative of our music and gave us such gushing compliments. I am truly humbled!
I plan to add more to this blog including pictures and limericks that were written by the tour group for each other. Stay tuned for more!
After we returned from the cliffs we changed into our formal attire and headed off to the Augustinian Church for our joint concert with the Voices of Limerick. We got there more-or-less on time but the 3 p.m. Mass was running quite late (it was a Mass for the Sick and they closed with Benediction, it appeared). So we got into the space around 4:05 instead of 3:45. We spent the time waiting milling around in the back and chatting with the Limerick choir. Finally we got up in the sanctuary and had the chance to run through a little bit of our joint number ("Down By The Riverside" by John Rutter) and then as it turned out we started the concert early (at 4:20). The Voices of Limerick sang first. They were much larger than we (I think I counted over 70 of them) and had a very full, warm sound. They sang for about 30 or 40 minutes; I particularly enjoyed a Mendelssohn piece they did and another in Gaelic by a local composer. Then we sang:
- Down In The River
- Glory of the Father
- Pater Noster
- Lux Aurumque
- Irish Tune
- Lagan Love (this was a BIG hit)
- Loch Lomond
- Deep River
- My Soul's Been Anchored
They really loved us and applauded wildly, so we sang our encore (Aint-A That Good News) and then the Voices of Limerick joined us to sing the joint piece. It went quite well, especially for such little rehearsal together. All in all it was our best concert of the tour -- the church was packed and the audience very enthusiastic.
After the concert we went back to the hotel and the Limerick choir joined us; we had an impromptu reception at the hotel and took some pictures and hung out and enjoyed some fellowship. I can't say enough about how warm and welcoming they were -- they were so kind and complimentary. I hope if we host a choir in the future we can do half so well.
After the reception wound down we had some dinner in the hotel and went to bed. Today we are scattering to the four winds -- some are staying on in Europe, headed to various destinations, and the group travelers leave for the airport at 11 a.m. (one last bus ride with Danny!).
All in all it's been an amazing, wonderful time and one that I will always treasure.
Friday, July 4, 2008
There was great food with which, of course, we only had a knife to eat! And one of our own was put in the dungeon! Ron (Swingen) was only down there for a few moments but he played the sorry soul well when released. :o)
We added(?) our own US of A brand to the evening and did a rousing rendition of Stars and Stripes Forever on kazoos. Yes, kazoos. It was well received but perhaps that was the result of the free flowing mead and wines!
Truly a good time was had by all and we must thank Mark Flannery and Christine Pellham for suggesting and making this opportunity happen! I hope to be able to post pictures at some later date.
For now, it is late and I must be off to bed. Tomorrow is our last touring day on this fair isle before we head home on Sunday and return VERY LATE.
Yes, this is our latest venue, and it was great! our Bunratty Castle concert turned out to be in Mac's pub on the castle grounds...well, not exactly in the pub, more like really near the pub... in a barn because of the light rain.
We were certain our concert was going to be for only a barn swallow or two, but due to Gunnar's tireless promotion (ok, and the ensuing downpour) the place was packed with delighted visitors who loved our singing. Also the barn acoustics were surprizingly good - what an adventure.
I guess it's almost time to go home: all the hotels are starting to blur together. I'm looking at this photo from a short time ago, and can't quite remember what hotel it was or what city it was in.
The hotels have all been quite nice in some way - either conveniently placed, or spacious, or comfy beds... and (nearly) all the rooms in all the hotels have had close to American showers.
Yesterday we drove the Ring of Kerry, which is a scenic drive from Killarney out along Dingle Bay and back around. The views were... amazing, and we had amazingly good weather the whole time. Really, the weather the whole trip has been quite awesome -- it's rained quite a bit, but with few exceptions it has been really nice when we wanted to be outdoors. We stopped for lunch at a place Danny knew that had an amazing view of the sea; and later we stopped for ice cream in a village with the unlikely name of Sneem. We also went through a frighteningly small, narrow tunnel (we applauded Danny the driver for that one).
On the way back to Killarney on our drive we stopped at Muckross House, a manor house built in the mid-1800s. It has been restored quite nicely and the house and grounds are just gorgeous. Our tour guide had the most beautiful Irish accent, it was to die for ;-).
After Muckross House we returned to the hotel and rested and had dinner on our own, then gathered at 9 to share some early farewells since our schedules wouldn't permit proper goodbyes tonight or tomorrow. On the tour we've all had a "tour buddy" who we were responsible for making sure was present when the bus leaves. We were all tasked with writing a limerick for our tour buddies, and we shared them. I'm hoping we will all post them at some point. I'll just say that some were sweet, some were just darn funny and all were appreciated and a lot of fun. What a group! We also shared some limericks for Danny, our amazing driver and Gunnar our guide. Danny has been SO much fun on this trip -- skillful, knowledgeable and really funny. It's been awesome. After the gathering we commandeered the snooker room and sang some songs and shared some jokes. Eliot played some tunes on his pipes, and he accompanied Kate on a beyoooooootiful song she sang. Ron then led us in some other songs with his guitar and then I called it a night.
This morning we left at 9 (Danny played Neil Diamond's "Coming to America" (I think that's what it's called) in honor of July 4th) and drove to Adare, a small village not too far from Limerick. We sang a 15-20 minute concert in the park opposite the visitor center and had a reasonably good audience, but it was outside and it was hard for us to hear ourselves. We did a pretty good job though!
After we left Adare we drove to Bunratty Castle and had time for lunch (I paid €17.50 (about $25!) for some really good roast beef with mashed AND new potatoes (see Biff's post below), carrots and cabbage, a Coke and some lovely cake. Then we had a castle tour -- pretty cool. The castle was built in 1425 and except for replacing the roof they didn't have to do too much restoration. After the tour we grabbed our music and since it had started to rain, we went to sing in a barn next to the pub we were originally told we would sing at. We sang for about 20 minutes or so and actually had a surprisingly large and enthusiastic audience (about 50, I was told) -- I'm not sure where they came from but I think Gunnar rounded them up. It actually was one of the better concerts on the tour -- as Kristi said, "Who'd a thunk it!?"
After the concert we got on the bus and headed for the hotel, taking a moment to mark America's birthday by singing "America the Beautiful" by special request from Kate :-). It was heartfelt and really touched me. The hotel is really nice -- the nicest rooms we have had on the trip so far, and free Internet! Yay :-) Tonight most of us are going back to Bunratty Castle for our banquet. It should be a lot of fun.
Tomorrow is the Burren region and the Cliffs of Moher, then a joint concert with the Voices of Limerick. Sunday the group travelers head home. I'm about ready to sleep in my own bed... it will be nice to be back in the USA.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
The cathedral was built in the 19th century and is very, very beautiful. We were dressed in our formal attire and looked quite spiffy, befitting the surroundings. It was a real pleasure for me personally to attend Mass and receive Communion at this holy place.
Oh, and if the whole thing wasn't surreal enough -- we've been told the Oregon Repertory Singers (ANOTHER Oregon choir) is supposed to sing at the cathedral *tomorrow* night. And, there's a choir concert tonight at another St. Mary's (an Anglican church) down the street from our hotel right now. Wow! As Danny, our driver, said -- what's going on in Oregon that half of Oregon is singing in Killarney?!
Leaving Kilkenny we drove to Waterford and went on the Waterford Crystal plant tour. It was truly impressive to watch the craftsmen at work. Unlike many factory tours, this one really let you see what goes on and how it's done. Of course we had some time to look at the showroom afterward and several tour members invested in some beautiful crystal :-). There was a 20% discount for 4th of July week, presumably aimed at the large number of American tourists.
This morning we left Waterford and drove to Cobh (pronounced "Cove"), a.k.a. Queenstown, and visited the museum there. It talked about the history of the port, the Famine, and the area. We only had about an hour and 15 minutes there, just barely enough to get through.
After Cobh we drove to Blarney castle -- this was an addition to our itinerary and (for my part) a most welcome one. We had just a couple of hours there but it was enough time to pony up €10 to enter the castle area and (of course) kiss the Blarney Stone! I have photographic proof that I'll post on my MySpace when I get home :-).
After Blarney castle we drove to Killarney for our concert. I'll blog that separately if I have a chance.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Dublin has many bridges across the River Liffey. We said goodby to Dublin this morning and headed for Kilkenny. It started to rain soon after we left and rained off and on (mostly on) until after we left Kilkenny.
Kilkenny is quite a busy, colorful town and we spent about 3 hours there visiting the cathedral, walking around, shopping, and having lunch.
We arrived in Waterford around 3pm and drove on out to the Waterford Crystal company. We had a very interesting tour and then an opportunity to shop. So many pretty pieces! We are staying at Dooley's Hotel which faces the River Suir. We had a nice walkabout after dinner along the river, stopped at a 11th century Franciscan monastery ruin right in the middle of modern buildings, and looked in store windows (all closed by then) - very pleasant. It would be fun to explore Waterford some more but it's just a short visit as we leave for Killarney tomorrow.
Monday, June 30, 2008
We thoroughly enjoyed singing/playing in Christ Church cathedral today I explored the underside of the church at the recomendation of other choralers and discovered a mummified cat and mouse in the crypt that had been found stuck in the organ pipes in 1885. Quite interesting, to say the least.
Eliot and I took a group to the Porterhouse, our favorite pub/restaurant here in Dublin as it has great food (rare in Ireland) and is a great venue with 4 sories and lots of places to sit. Unfortunately, the Sunday match was on and it was very loud and packed... but I still had a Bulmers cider and a great time. Pubs in Ireland get packed whenever a match is on (doesn't really matter whose playing)... just think of each match like the Superbowl and you'll have a small idea of how involved the Irish are with their sports. Nothing good in my mind though... just football (soccer), hurling, and cricket. Needless to say, it was loud and a very good time!
We will be staying behind as the rest of the group so Eliot can play for the piper's club at the Cobblestone (http://www.pipers.ie/events/_080701Session.htm) We'v already been in Waterford last year, so we aren't missing too much. We are then taking a train to Killarney to meet up with the group, which we are THRILLED about... we've had enough bus travel for a lifetime! We did some research and found out they are having a special that makes the train almost as cheap as the bus, which is great beacause we will be able to get up and walk around, play cards, eat, not get carsick, etc. Yay!
All around I am just enjoying seeing all our old haunts, food we enjoyed, and places I'd never thought I'd see again. I also heard they finished the bridge over the river at the University of Limerick, so we just may have to go see that, considering how many extra miles we walked due to the construction there.
Yeah, there's a lot of things I don't miss, but overall it is very good to be back, but only to visit this time!
Another busy day on the tour. We visited the Book of Kells and the Long Room (the Old Library) at Trinity College in the morning. The Book of Kells, written around 800 AD, is a beautiful illuminated manuscript of the 4 Gospels. They only display 2 pages at a time and the pages are changed every day. The Long Room is breathtaking - full of many rare books and manuscripts. These are definitely a must see should you ever find yourself in Dublin!
The chorale sang at Christchurch at 1:15pm. What a magnificent setting for them! Their music was beautiful and was thoroughly enjoyed by all who visited the church. I think the chorale members enjoyed it as well. We enjoyed the beautiful music shared by Elliot on his Uilleann pipes.
After the concert, some of us went looking for the St. Patrick's cathedral. It, too, is beautiful, if you imagine past the scaffolding of the renovation! We decided to not go in, but look for food instead. After a quick delicious sandwich at a small bistro, we went to the Chester Beatty Library in the Dublin "Castle". Now that has a collection of art and manuscripts from the Orient, Near East, and Europe that deserved much more than the hour we were able to give it before closing. We saw less than half, and that too quickly. This, too, is a "do not miss" place in Dublin; we will be back, given half a chance.
Dublin is a bustling and busy city. There are many things to do and see here and one day just isn't enough.
Tomorrow we head for Waterford with a stop (around lunch, I hope) in Kilkenny which is reported to be a beautiful and colorful town.
Before the concert some of us went to Trinity College to view the Book of Kells and the Long Room. The book is amazing and the Long Room awesome! As a librarian it is some what compulsory for me to have visited here. I think I would have wanted to anyway. The intricacy of the designs and patterns on the book of Kells and the other books on display are mind boggling. As for the Long Room, I long to just browse the shelves but, of course, that isn't exactly allowed. I wonder if I could get an apprenticeship or something to work there for a month some summer. I didn't think to ask.
We have had a range of accomodations so far an this trip. Last night and tonight we are in the most modern hotel yet. It is not really my taste but serviceable. The sink and mirror are outside the bathroom and right next to the bed! The bathroom itself has a curved piece of glass and door! You can't see through it but honestly it's unnerving. One wall is a bright orangy red broken in between the twin beds we happen to have in our room by a decorative piece of mirror art with cove lighting behind. There is a huge floor to ceiling mirror on the wall opposite the bed with a nice little outlet for shavers and the blow dryer is there. Too bad they didn't think to put an outlet for us ladies who like to curl our hair! And, of course, this means you must do all of this noisy stuff right in the bedroom area. If you are sharing the room with someone who would like a little more time to sleep it becomes a bit annoying. Ah well, such are the stuff of traveling abroad. Again, one never knows what things one has taken for granted until that has been altered or taken away!
Tomorrow we move through Kilkenny on our way to Killarney for the evening. Like many I am affected by the long days and find it hard to sleep a full night. I don't feel that tired but am getting something less than my usual number of hours of sleep.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Today we visited Newgrange, or more accurately, visited the visitor center at Newgrange. It turns out that groups of 15 or more (like us) need to book a shuttle bus to the site itself in advance, and such shuttles are booked out over a year in advance. To see Newgrange today, we would have had to know our exact schedule and number of tour members well before any of us owed the first trip payment. Such is life on tour: you win s0me; you lose some.
At any rate, the visitor center was really nice, with a reproduction of the central part of the passage within Newgrange, detailed explanations of the neolithic monuments at Bru na Boine(sp), and photos of the excavations in the 1960's.
Newgrange has waited for us for over 5,000 years; it will have to be patient just a bit longer.
- Buy or get a free voucher from the front desk 0r the barista
- Connect to the strongest wireless access point, which had better be the one that sold you the voucher.
- Enter the username and password combination from the voucher card.
- It doesn't work.
- Go back to the front desk or barrista and explain the problem.
- "Sorry, it just doesn't work sometimes"
- The desk/cafe dude hands you another voucher from a large deck 0f them.
- Repeat steps 3 through 6 until the desk/barrista dude says "It's some BT thing. Sometimes these vouchers just don't work." (Implication: hey, we tried; what's yer problem?）
- Enter your room
- Turn on your computer
- Enter your browser and click "OK".
- use the net.
This morning we sang in the service at Fisherwick Presbyterian, Belfast, singing Down in the River, Pater Noster, My Soul's Been Anchored, and Nunc Dimitus. It was a lovely service. Here is a photo 0f the church as we set up for our brief rehearsal.
Flexibility is the order of the trip. We were supposed to sing at a maritime festival yesterday and were thoroughly rained out. I was both sad and happy. Sad not to get a chance to sing and happy not to have to try and sing in the open air and rain! The festival reminded me of a wee Rose Festival. Ships, food, demonstrations of local safety agencies and even the library had a tent. They have only been doing this for a few years. I am sure it will get even better.
Off to Dublin in the Republic of Ireland. Last country to explore. Erin go bragh! (Hope that's spelled right!)
Saturday, June 28, 2008
We have crossed the Irish sea to Northern Ireland and had a great guide that gave a fairly balanced overview of the political scene. I am learning a great deal about the history and am enjoying it.
Not getting a lot of good sleep but need to go now. I will try to post again soon.
Friday, June 27, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
The chorale sang in the Chapel Royal at Stirling Castle - very nice. The space seemed to be meant for their music. A large part of the chorale travelers then visited the Wallace Memorial. Several of us visited the Holy Rude Cathedral which is the only church in Britain other than Westminster to host a coronation. It was James VI of Scotland (James I of England). Beautiful cathedral!
It was a lovely drive out to St. Andrew's on the eastern Scottish coast. Quite a few agricultural fields which looked to be wheat, barley, peas, and potatoes. St. Andrew' is a pretty university town. The castle and cathedral there are fascinating ruins. Very interesting! Some of us climbed to the top of tower of the Church of St. Rule - how many steps - not sure, but it was quite the climb!
We closed the day with a delicious dinner of stovies and steak pie followed by a sticky toffee pudding shared by six. It was gone in 45 seconds! Yummm!
Our first stop was the (remains of) the castle. It was pretty impressive. During a great siege in the 1500s the attackers starting digging a tunnel (a "mine") to try to undermine the gatehouse; the defenders dug a countermine to intercept the mine and were successful. Tourists are allowed to go into the countermine and follow it to the mine. Amazing! But very claustrophobic -- the countermine is very cramped and narrow, you have to crouch the whole way. In America they'd never let you go in such a thing.
After the castle visit we had about 2 hours to walk around, so I was very ambitious and got myself a bit lost :-) but found my way back (I had to retrace my steps). All I had was a tourist-y map and I walked right off it!
Then we had our Cathedral visit. The St. Andrews Cathedral was absolute HUGE. Really. Enormous. Unfortunately due to the ravages of the Reformation and subsequent use of the cathedral as a convenient source of building materials, all that remains is one of the front tower, part of one wall and the very back wall, plus a number of footings for columns etc. It made me very sad that a holy place was desecrated so badly -- but it's the story all over Scotland :-(.
This week is apparently graduation week at the University of St. Andrews, and there were graduates and happy (and relieved) parents walking around, the graduates in their academic garb. It was fascinating.
On a personal note, I have the world's smallest hotel room. It's a good thing I'm not sharing it with David at this point because it's 8.5 ft by 9.5 ft (seriously!). It's definitely cosy -- but it's clean, and the bathroom looks pretty refurbed and nice so I'm not actually complaining.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
It's light till 10:30pm here, and gets light around 4am or so (guessing from when my blurry eyes look at the clock when awakened by the blinding light. I can't believe how lovely it is to have so much light, even if it is somewhat disorienting (It's only 5 or so, right? Oh, it's 9pm? Wow).
The thing I am enjoying most about this trip is discovering how many things feel normal to me since I've lived in Ireland before. Usually when you travel to a foreign country everything is new and exciting, which sometimes then gets old after a few days and turns into homesickness. For me it is nice to feel at home seeing a Tesco, buying Jaffa cakes, driving on the left, and having my bacon in the form of "rashers", or little slices of ham. It's good to be back, but just to visit... paying 30p to use the facilities is not something I miss!
Tomorrow is more Stirling and St. Andrews, which I sadly know nothing about and am looking forward to it. I suppose I will just put on my sleep mask to ensure I get a good 8hrs of sleep!
Eliot and I are staying seperate from the group in a little B&B right under Stirling Castle. We can actually look up at the castle from our back porch, which is quite nice, and all the other windows have views of the highlands, which is fantastic. Our hostess is ridiculously nice, and we are having a great time.
We are looking forward to singing in the castle at 2 today, but even more so I am looking forward to going shopping for some sweaters... maybe some rainproof ones....
It is raining (again) here in Scotland, although yesterday morning was glorious for the visit to the Battlefield of Culloden. The new visitor's center is very well done, with some unique ways of portraying a rather complex subject wrt circumstances leading the the battle, the battle itself and the aftermath.
Monday, June 23, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Got to sing impromptu (Glory of the Father and Ain'ta that good news) in Glasgow Cathedral - it was wonderful to sing in a Cathedral again; lovely acoustics. I'm sorry for the part of the group that were singing at the end of their jet-lag-and-dehydration day, but the result was lovely.
Visited St. Mungo's crypt - cool.
Woops, the bus is here - ta!
Saturday, June 21, 2008
This evening (between the jet-lag and the high latitude, it's hard to guess the time) the rain is beginning that should stick with us Oregon Ducks through tomorrow.
Several minutes later we get the second phone call. She had been successful in freeing the bird using forceps. Good news but I was not prepared for what she said next. "The bird flew away...and fell out of the sky."
Friday, June 20, 2008
Now we are just tuckered out.....and ready for some sleep.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Don't you know it, I was true to my word. We have been eating the oddest things since that time trying to empty the fridge of anything and everything we could consume. Pickles have become the new vegetable around the house. Tonight, my dinner consisted of 4 frozen ravioli and carrots with hummus. Eliot has been heating a lot of ramen, and I am pretty sure I've had canned soup for lunch every day this week. Looking back, I wish I had gone grocery shopping. Eating dry cereal and turkey burgers 4 nights in a row can give you great hindsight.
So now we take off to drive to Portland and drop the cat off with my mother. Two hours with a whiney cat... great. We are about a day behind the choir since we needed cheaper tickets, but we should get to Glasgow before everyone leaves, barring any travel problems.
I think I will have a pickle for dessert and hit the road!
Off to the airport and ... an accident tying up I84! Oh, well, we are not in a hurry - the plane does not leave until tomorrow morning.
Finally, checked-in, and in the bar, blogging and enjoying a Guiness! No more worries; if we forgot it, we forgot it. From now on it is vacation time!!
I, too, struggle with taking time off from work. Not so much as I'm worried about indispensability, because face it, everyone is dispensable after a period of adjustment, but rather whether I'll be able to return to work with an appropriate level of enthusiasm and interest. Don't get me wrong - I like my job. It just takes me several weeks to process through the experiences of a trip like this.
Otherwise, I'm getting ready to activate my anti-jet-lag routine. Those of us that are not driven by routine have it pretty easy - I just make sure I'm REALLY tired when it's time to go to bed that first night and the battle is won! Here's to a wide awake and alert second day... !
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
A few pieces of clothing and shoes later, all's well (though not all that light). I expect it will be good to have our luggage so empty - plenty of room for souvenirs!
I just realized yesterday that this is probably the longest vacation I've taken in the last 15 years, or perhaps ever. (Okay, it's not entirely a vacation, but from the work perspective it is). For those of us with a strong desire to feel needed/indispensable/irreplaceable at work, it's hard to be gone for that long. Either they'll get along just fine with out me (in which case I'll worry that they don't really need me!) or they won't (in which case I'll feel guilty). Oh well! My boss has been very supportive and happy that I'm taking some time, so I suppose I should as well.
We had our last rehearsal before the tour last night. We worked out our mixed formation and worked on some trouble spots. Our intrepid troubadour Eliot was there so we got to practice with him -- always a joy. And the identity of blogger "Biff" was revealed -- who'da thunk it?!
Monday, June 16, 2008
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Luckily, there's a simple way around the problem: get a USB Compact Flash (or whatever you use) card reader. We had one that I'd bought from Office Depot a year or two ago, and it transferred the photos just fine.
In other USB news: our Asus PC doesn't recognize our MP3 players, so check those USB devices before you arrive overseas.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Then, this afternoon as I was digging waaaay back into the back of the closet to choose what to pack for the trip, I found my old tux coat...or at least I thought it was my old tux coat. Then, on a whim, I put it on - it fits great.
As near as we can figure, when we bought the new tux coat, I put it in the closet, took the old one to the cleaners, then hung that one up when it came back. Then when the next concert came, I wore the old tux coat, and the new one slipped further and further into the back of the closet.
I think only a musician can find himself ever saying 'I can't believe it, I've been wearing the old tux coat!'
I also bought a current adapter and a charger for my iPod Shuffle. The charger claims to accept 110 or 240V and 50/60HZ, so I bought an adapter and not a converter. I guess I'll find out if the charger folks are lying or not! I also got another memory stick for my camera so I can trade them out.
I stopped at the bank and got 60 euros and 60 pounds. I'd forgotten how pretty European money is... a little too pretty. It tends to look like Monopoly money to me and it's a little too easy to forget it's not! The euros are not too good looking, but the English notes are. I've got pictures of the Queen! :-)
Friday, June 13, 2008
Each Chorale tour has had a completely different and unexpected theme. For example, the tour of the Baltics turned out to be a Freedom tour - a comparison and contrast of the oppression of the Soviet Era with the strange politics at home, along with the moving love our guides had for their very new freedom.
I wonder what this tour's theme will turn out to be?
Unlike the time when I was about 5 years old and was going on a short trip with friends of my parents. The family's fears that I would get homesick being away from home for the first time without mom or dad were unfounded. Apparently I left the house with my little suitcase and sat on the curb to wait for them to drive up. Mom was frantic, but I was ready to go, go go!
I still love to travel; it just takes me longer to pack these days.
(This is me, packing for our move to Ireland)
So now I am sitting in my circle again, trying to figure out how I will get 2 1/2 weeks worth of stuff into one backpack and half a suitcase. "Must-haves" are now things like prescription medication and my passport instead of Friends DVDs and my hairdryer. My how my perspective has changed on how to travel!
Now if only I didn't need all this darn music... :-)