Thursday, March 31, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
I re-discovered the pleasures of live theater a little over a year ago and have attended quite a few of their productions. Yesterday I caught the last performance of Echoes of Ireland, an original play written by a local couple with strong ties to Ireland. The two of them doubled as cast members in what was a fairly large cast of about 15. The setting was an Irish pub in 1939 and a poetry contest between two clans. Two of the judges had a private bet on the outcome of the contest, the winner of whom would be in possession of a parcel of land that one's ancestor had swindled from the other's ancestor. A secondary story involved a young couple at odds about getting married because the young man did not understand the young woman's need for security, which to her meant holding property in her own name. (Yes, the same property that was the subject of the aforementioned wager. It all works out in the end. For most everyone.)
The primary point of the play was to expose the audience to a wealth of poetry by various Irish poets. Each of the players would take their turn at center stage and dramatically recite poems of Irish humor, of Irish history, of Irish life. At various times the name Cromwell would be uttered, with the result that all 15 or so of the players would simultaneously spit on the floor. A small Celtic band provided opportunity for the singing of Irish folk songs and a little bit of dance. The audience was tapping their feet and clapping their hands on a regular basis. By the end of the performance, we all had a strong urge to speak in a brogue.
I am always pleasantly surprised to see how well the community supports the Opera House. Yesterday's matinee was the final performance for this play and it was very nearly sold out. I certainly enjoyed myself and I'm looking forward to the next play to hit the historic boards. What a nice way to spend a Sunday afternoon.
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
For what is a sneeze or two in comparison with the anticipation of things to come?
Saturday, March 12, 2011
So when a co-worker and fellow game-player plopped down in my office this week and announced she was through with the Facebook games, it triggered a sympathetic response on my part. I knew what she was feeling and I knew I, too, needed to stop wasting my time and get back to the things I truly enjoy.
Like blogging. Like genealogical research. Like miniatures.
It's funny when you come to that point and say "no more". This morning, instead of spending the early hours of the morning catching up with the games, I pulled out a pile of family records and starting sorting and filing and the next thing I knew, I was caught up in the Beauchamp family history. Instead of plowing and planting fictitious crops, I was busily dissecting a long bio I had found awhile back and discovering that buried in the middle of it was the name of a direct ancestor I did not yet have. That was way better fun than Farmville.
At mid-morning I stepped outside with the dogs and discovered the weather was perfect for a little bit of yard work. I decided to tackle the nasty photina bushes that line both of my decks. Before I present the after photo, I must explain that I absolutely detest the photina bushes and my aim is not to make them pretty but to make them miserable so they will die and I can stop trimming photina bushes twice a year. The things grow like crazy, sending out branches in all directions and creating a mass of greenery that blocks my view of the woods. If I did not realize how much money was spent on creating this cluster of eyesores, I would have poured stump killer on them long ago. I'm beginning to wonder if ten years is long enough to suffer their presence.
Mojo and Coco watched from the deck, keeping me company while I worked. They were thrilled to be outside in the soft breeze and warm sunshine. I was thrilled when a couple of hours later the bushes surrounding the north deck were under control again.
The first sign of impending Spring arrived in my yard this week when the irises I transplanted a couple of years ago suddenly began blooming. These are the iris bulbs I liberated from an overgrown, forgotten cemetery where they had naturalized and they have proved to be hardy little plants that have already begun multiplying in my flower bed. In a couple of days I will have a solid ring of white blooms. (The second group of bulbs I transplanted last year from another cemetery are not showing any inclination to bloom this year, but they survived the winter and I have hopes that there will be purple blooms next year.)
About the time I wrapped up the first round of photina butchering, I was dehydrated and about to cave in from hunger. My meals of late have been singularly unsatisfying, so I decided to take myself downtown for a good homestyle meal at The Grace Miller Cafe. Bastrop has two places to find a good chicken fried steak. Since I had eaten at Maxine's a couple of weeks ago, I decided it was time to refresh my memory of the version served at Gracie's. I started off with a plate piled high.
When I left, there was maybe a half slice of toast and a half-dozen green breans still on the plate. It was yummy and I have to say that this plate was a whole lot closer to homemade taste than the similar plate I ate at Maxine's. Next time I have a CFS craving, I know where to go.
I had intentions of moseying around town after lunch, but I changed my plans after eavesdropping on a conversation at the next table. As I had left the subdivision, headed downtown, I had passed two fire engines in full siren mode. A new arrival at the cafe had stopped by another table to tell them about a big fire in the depths of the subdivision. Not knowing where or how big the fire was, I decided to head back home - just in case.
On the way out of the cafe, I was struck by the gleaming copper dome of the courthouse nearby. The iPhone camera did not do it justice, but take my word for it, the copper was glinting in the sun like a beacon.
I seriously considered spending the afternoon napping off that huge lunch, but instead the dogs and I set up shop in the front yard this time. While they watched the neighborhood traffic, I moved all the houseplants that have been wintering in the garage out to the porch. Another couple of hours later, we had them all thoroughly watered, the garage swept of dead leaves, the bird bath reinstated, and had tested the riding mower to be sure it was going to start when I next need it.
Tonight we are all pleasantly pooped and satisfied with the way our day went. Tomorrow, if we are not crippled with sore muscles, we will tackle the photina menace on the south side.
But, oh how I love Spring.