Saturday, November 16, 2013

Snow, Symphony, Red Whine and Whales

The snow I mentioned yesterday has been falling, and falling, and falling. This morning we found about four inches of the glorious white stuff on our porch. We use our railing as a measure. Sometimes we clear away a section just to see how much falls after we get started. Then I shoveled the snow off the porches, both front and back. This snow is heavy, wet, but oh so pristine white. It makes great snowballs – as Diane can attest to, having taken the one I made for her and thrown it at me. I made a second one and threw it at her, so we are even, for now. Yesterday I whined about winter. I apologize. I mean it when I say that snow makes me nervous, particularly navigating through it. But there is something magical about being in the middle of snowfall – steady, flakey, and so very silent. Unless there is wind, or it is a blizzard, you don’t actually hear the snow falling. You just see it. So my best bet is to sit back and relax, with a cuppa or a glass of the house red, and watch. I can travel to far away places like Siberia, imagining myself to be on the train with Doctor Zhivago; or up on the mountains of Glacier National Park searching for wolverines, as in the Nature show I watched this week on PBS, only warmer. I do have to venture out, however. This afternoon the grandparents, both sets, are taking the grandkids to the movies and pizza. Xander is our one and only, but Claire Marie and Frank have several others as well, and Diane and I have been adopted by them as honorary Oma and Opa. We got the invite a few hours ago and feel honored to be invited. Besides, except for our very occasional major trips, we don’t get out much. Then, tomorrow, we go with our good friend Joop to the Glacier Symphony for a matinee concert. Two outings in two days! There remains nothing in the world like live performance, and our experience with this orchestra has been a continual surprise and delight. This concert includes an early piece by Edvard Grieg, a violin concerto by Max Bruch, Respighi’s Pines of Rome and Alan Hovhannes’ And God Created Great Whales. I have never heard the Grieg or Bruch, so am very excited about them. Pines is an old favorite, and Whales is one of those fascinating modern romantic pieces that always manages to please. Hovhannes uses actual whale song in the piece. I just wonder how on earth they’re going to get a whale up on the stage.

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