Monday, 21 January 2019

The sad and the sweet

The sad:

Yet another stray dog, this time wandering around Glen Oaks Manor here in Sarasota.

He was a handsome beast maybe a Boxer mix

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who seemed to be in good health.  He was friendly enough, so Zion and he were able to greet each other.  But he did not have a collar, so I could not grab him, and I was not carrying my mobile 'phone.

Meanwhile,  one dumb person grabbed a stick to beat him if he drew near.  Another called out "should I call Animal Services?"  

My snarky side wanted to say "No, call Macy's Departmental Store"  but I resisted the temptation. 

This lovely stray then ran off. 

Nearer to my home a neighbour stopped as she was driving by, to say Hi.

I told her about the stray and she told me that she had just seen him on (North) Beneva Ave.  Oh no!  That's a very busy road.

I get very sentimental about strays.  That's certainly because the ever wonderful ZION was a stray who was found wandering in Lafayette, Louisiana.  He was mercifully transported from a kill shelter there to our local no kill shelter.

The rest is history.  Just over a year ago he became my BCF (Best Canine Friend),  but I sometimes get very sad as I think of  Zion  wandering the streets of Lafayette, all alone, and probably very scared.


The Sweet.

Yesterday (Sunday 20th) saw me at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall here in SRQ for a matinĂ©e concert with the "pretty darn good"
Sarasota Symphony.

On the way in to the Van Wezel, all by accident,  I encountered my dog walking acquaintance Joshua.

He is the principal Horn player for the Sarasota Orchestra and comes across as a very fine man.  We greeted each other warmly.

First there was a Verdi Overture (La Forza del Destino), and then Beethoven's Piano Concerto # 1 with world renowned pianist Emmanuel Ax.

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What a blast to be in a town which can attract world famous musicians!

I know the Concerto very well, but this was my first live performance.  It was sublime, just like meeting an old friend who you have admired at a distance but never met in person.

The frosting on the cake was that I was with the always estimable Ann Albritton, member of St. Boniface Church and Professor of Modern Art at the Ringling College of Art and Design.  She is good news personified.

At the intermission she ventured that the Beethoven was utterly superb that she wanted to skip the second half of the Concert  (Prokofiev's Symphony # 5 ) lest it blot out the Beethoven from her soul.

I was "with her", so we came back to my home, nursed a glass of Malbec, nibbled on Cashews, and enjoyed each other's company and conversation to the max.  Wonderful!

Ann will retire this year and move away from Sarasota. Utterly good for her, but tenderly sad for her Sarasota friends.

Ann Albritton


Next month I'll be at the Asolo Rep. Theatre to see Arthur Miller's "The Crucible" with my friends Donna Chrisman and Ashley Lloyd (mother/daughter).

This retirement gig ain't half bad!

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