Sunday, December 15, 2013

Another Fun Day

Yesterday was the first day that the joys of my new phase in life really set in. Actually, I was feeling a little ambivalent about the day, for while I had lots of fun events scheduled, I feared that maybe I had too many fun events scheduled, in which case, they would cease to be fun.

To begin the day, Rachael and Lillian came for breakfast.  Breakfast is one of the many perfect times to have company over for a meal, and Rachael and Lillian were delightful guests.  Lillian and Tobias bonded immediately and got on wonderfully.

The March of the Parols
For the last bunch of years, I have wanted to go to Simbang Gabi, but have always been working.  This year, I would have been working, but – wasn’t!  Yay!  Simbang Gabi for me – and even better, Rachael and Lillian coming too! In the Philippines, a novena, the nine days preceding Christmas, is celebrated with Masses at dawn each day. 

Fortunately, Mass was not at dawn in the Cathedral, or it might not have been quite so well attended.  The service was beautiful, both visually and every other way. And such fun!  Rousing music, glowing lights, gleaming color, and joyful people everywhere!  I was soooo glad to be able to attend this year. You can see some really good pictures here.

A very appreciative audience at Mount St. Vincent
Immediately after Mass, off to Mount St. Vincent for a little Christmas Concert for the residents.  This is always a moving event, as the residents are the most appreciative audience.  Many who have not said a word all year, suddenly come to life and sing, and even the most apathetic seem to sparkle. 

Then home to collapse.  I was eating my dinner and thinking, “This would be the perfect time for a bike ride.  The weather is fine, and I feel like a bit of exercise.  What was I dreading about this day?  It hasn’t been too busy at all.  Now I can settle down and have a nice relaxing read.  But wait!  Aren’t I scheduled to usher at a concert this evening?  Oh dear!  The weather is freezing and I so don’t want to go out again.  I’m too tired to ride anywhere.”  Ah the complexities of our lives, with the weather suddenly changing from quite perfect to so very imperfect for a bicycle ride, and all in an instant – and with no change whatever in the thermometer or barometer!  But it was worth it.  The Opus 7 concert was preternaturally beautiful, and intensely moving, especially John Meuhleisen's Requiem in honor of the people murdered at Newtown. This wonderful piece was like a cold blast of horror tempered with hope for the living whose lives must go on. Music really does have the power to heal.

Martha and Joe


Marta said...

You rascal. Who is that adorable couple?

The mass is so colorful. I've been before and totally impressed.

Singing at Mt. St. Vincent is always inspiring. One of the patients knew me from St. Stephen.
Her daughter said she was hoping to see me. How sweet is that.

Samos said...

Why does Rachael have a chair on her arm???

Laura said...

You are keeping quite busy in a very wonderful way! Lovely pictures at church and the portrait of your friends