Sunday, 8 January 2012

And I say to myself........

.... what a wonderful day.


I was “up and at it” (as usual) by 5:00 a.m. today.

By 9:00 a.m. I had walked Penne twice, had my breakfast, and fed the cats.

I had also taken care of the “three S’s”:  showered, shaved and s.....  (you can fill in that word).

At 9:15 a.m. I left my good dog Penne with her local care-givers Ron and Lee.  (As I let her jump out of my car she tried to run home, but once she was in their house she relaxed and settled down).

10:00 a.m. saw me leading the St. Boniface Sunday adult bible class. There were about 30 people in attendance
.
We’ll be reading a lot from St. Mark’s Gospel this year, so I read about six chapters of Mark aloud (without interruption), hoping that we could all hear it “anew” – i.e. as if we had never heard it before.

I know that many of us heard it with fresh ears.  Some folks said that they had heard it “as if they were there”.  It all speaks well of the power of story-telling.

At 11:15 a.m. I presided at the third of St. Boniface’s Sunday morning services.  There was more than a decent attendance, and our “training choir”  (the Schola) sang well and to great effect -  conducted by our good musician Neil Page (he is an Englishman from Exeter who lives here with his wife Sue for part of each year).

The ever-splendid Barbara Roth Donaldson was at the organ.  Our interim Rector (Dean Taylor) preached.

I shot out of Church as soon as it was decent, and rushed up to “Marina Jack’s” – a “pretty good” restaurant right on Sarasota’s marina and bay-front. 

(‘Twas  a tough drive since Sarasota was awash with “Harley” bikers, here for their annual “Thunder on the Bay” gathering.  One does not tangle with Harley bikers!.)

Once at “Marina Jack’s I threw caution to the wind and used their valet parking service. ‘Twas the only thing to do since every “free” parking space was already taken.

I met my good pals Ben and Bob at the restaurant.  They both lunched on Eggs Benedict.  I contented with a simple spinach salad.

We hoved off after lunch, and headed to Sarasota’s Van Wezel Performing Arts Centre.  It’s less than a mile away from the restaurant, but such was the volume of traffic that the wee journey took us about twenty minutes.

We were there for a fabulous concert by the Sarasota Orchestra.  In the first part we heard Mozart’s Piano Concerto # 21 -  a splendid piece indeed. I’ve heard it many times, and it never ceases to delight.

After the intermission we listened to Rachmaninoff’s “Symphonic Dances op  45” – composed in 1940.

I was raised to believe that nothing good had been composed in the classical repertoire since the death of Johannes Brahms in 1897.  So was prepared to be unhappy with this classical music which had been composed just four years before my birth.

Instead – I heard music which had me sitting on the edge of my seat.  The piece has wonderful melodies, fascinating and unusual harmonies, and fabulous syncopation.  

I was enchanted. What a wonderful bit of music in which strings (including harp), brass, woodwinds, piano, and timpani all play a vital part, (even the lowly triangle stars in this music).

So I was on a high as I drive home. Penne was also on a high as a retrieved her from her dog-sitters’ home, (where she had been an angel).

Good food. 

Good church.

Good music.

Good dog!

Good friends.

Lord above - I am so blessed and privileged!


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