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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Since nothing ever happens around here on Saturday, letís go back to Friday night so I can tell you about the concert I went to. A friend and I trekked a couple of miles to Sebastopol, where Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas were playing. If you already know who they are, you know that he plays the violin and she plays the cello, and they do mostly traditional Scottish music (because thatís where Alasdair is from) plus some Irish music, because St. Patrickís Day is coming up.

They played a lot of toe-tapping dance music, and some in the audience were even moved to get up and do something that looked almost like dancing. Itís hard to keep from smiling when you hear this kind of music. But it wasnít all jigs and reels and hornpipes. Every so often they would play a ballad, a slow, plaintive lament with a melody that seared your soul, just as sad as the other kind was happy. The two instruments played off each other, and with each other, and then, with no warning, would break into jazzy riffs that lifted the music to a new plane, beyond category or classification. It was beautiful and powerful at the same time.

I enjoyed the concert, but not so much the crowd. Thatís the reason I donít get out much, I guess. (Well, thatís one of the reasons, anyway.) And the crowd was wonderful. There wasnít a bad person there, and no one was rude to me, and the smokers went way away from the building during intermission. So I have nothing to complain about, except that there were so many people, and I had a sensation of things closing in around me. But really, that was only during the time people were milling around, before and after the performance. And other than that, I enjoyed the show (and the company).

10 March 2008

Red sky beyond the birch tree.

As for today, it was a typical Saturday of promising myself Iíd get some work done, and then sitting around watching soccer and racing, and reading on my Kindle. If it hadnít rained off and on for the last two days, I would have considered working in the yard. As it was, Mother Nature spared me that difficult decision. It can wait until the next dry weekend, or the one after that.

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