Every year at Birthday Time, I say, “no party, no presents. I don’t want them.” And they say, “You can’t do that! You have to have a party. You have to have presents.” (They are a little more cooperative about the “no present” thing around Christmas when hundreds are clamoring for presents from them!) Yesterday was my birthday party, and it was great. I generally egoistically assume that if I had a good time, it was a great party and everyone else did too. This may not actually always follow. The meal was wonderful -- mainly Moroccan with pear salad, gingerbread (a Joanna’s Birthday constant) cooked by Rebecca, and pumpkin soup prepared by Ana. We were so excited about eating that we did not take one single picture. Later, after most of the guests were gone, and Rachael, Rebecca, and Bill W were upstairs doing some computer thing, and I was doing dishes, I was less excited and took a picture of the last of the cleanup. This is just from the dessert, as I did the main part of the dinner dishes previous to serving the cake. Don’t feel that it is unfair for the Birthday Girl. Actually, I have always sort of enjoyed doing dishes. Perverse, eh? Everyone offers to help, but I usually maneuver to do it alone.
My gifts were beyond wonderful, and I will show them to you tomorrow or the next day. It’s getting late! I said “a festive couple of days,” and that is only one day.
Today, Rebecca and I went to the opera to see Elektra, and it was – well – electrifying! I didn’t know much about it beforehand, except that it was about a really dysfunctional family, so my expectations were on the low side. Wow, was I wrong. It was the most amazing and incredible thing. The role of Elektra required a superhuman person, and superhuman she was. The opera was wonderful, terrible, mad, passionate, the music moving, the libretto lush, the singing profound, and the soprano playing Elektra, Jayne Casselman, was astonishingly exponentially marvelous. When it was over, I had tears of amazement at the wonder of it. I just really could not believe that opera could be so good.
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