Saturday, November 28, 2015

The Faure concerts

This week has been all about the Faure's Requiem concerts ... Two concerts down now, one more to go, tomorrow afternoon in Bangalow.

The concerts in Lismore (Wednesday) and Mullumbimby (today) were lovely. We were better at today's concert - and hoping to be even better tomorrow! The first two concerts also included a very sweet children's choir that Ian teaches. They marched in singing the Mozart Alleluia, and then did it all in solfa (do, re, me etc,) including the hand signs. They were better than me at that!! Below is a photo of them rehearsing minutes before the concert started.

Apart from the Requiem and children's choir, the concert included a Bach Concerto for Flute and Oboe, a Tallis piece and a Michael Leunig poem (A Gruntled Fellow) set to a Bach piece. That was really lovely, and made everyone smile/laugh.

Choir concerts are quite different here than in Brisbane ... I'm not talking about the standard of music. That's definitely really high! But - probably it's a 'Byron' thing - everyone is so much more relaxed and laid back, including the audience! A great rapport between the director (Ian) and audience ... Children wandering around, people with babies standing in the doorway ... And today the hall was completely full. Kept having to put more chairs out. On Wednesday evening in Lismore the fire alarm went off in the church, and the solution was to turn the lights off and carry on! (This was the caretaker's decision!!)

However, I do have to admit that my yoga practice has suffered in the few days since I got back to Australia. Partly because I've been feeling a bit off, and partly coz I'm finding it very hard to go back to a 10am class as opposed to a 7am one. I really don't like that any more, but there's not much I can do about it if I want to keep practicing at Dena's shala ... Sigh!

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Sunday, November 08, 2015

Beautiful Portugal

Have been in Portugal for a few days. First of all we stayed in Lisbon for a couple of days. It is such a beautiful city - I was amazed! Couldn't put my camera (iPhone!) away ... We spent a day wandering up and down all the beautiful little streets. Getting trams sometimes, and even got on a funicular train one evening - going up an extremely steep street! The next day we went to the Gulbenkian museum and beautiful gardens ...

Then we caught the train down to the Algarve where Wendi lives -

One day - think it was yesterday (!) I went to an Iyengar class at a centre where Wendi and daughter do vegetarian catering for yoga and similar residential groups. The teacher had decided to do a 'restorative yoga' class then. It was interesting to see how differently poses we do in Ashtanga, are approached .. But I'll definitely be sticking with Ashtanga!

Back in London now, and the last couple of days before I head back home ...

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Monday, November 02, 2015

Dublin and back to London

We got back from Dublin on Friday evening ... Had a really nice couple of days there. We seemed to go to a lot of places - Judy and Carla had us on the move constantly. I know I've been walking a lot in London (apart from anything else, you walk for miles in the tube stations between platforms!) but it certainly seemed like we were walking huge distances in Dublin! Mind you, this is coming from someone who lives in a much more car-based area!

Anyway, the day we arrived we went to Dublin Castle, and then an exhibition of (I think) 18th century comic prints. We also went to a beautiful 'Palladian-style' country house set it beautiful grounds ... Again the beautiful Autumn colours were a feast for eyes. The Library (long room!) of Trinity College is also a lovely place to visit.

Back in London and we went out for dinner last night in Notting Hill. Last night also happened to be both Halloween and a Saturday night! The tube was brimming with witches, zombies and any other fancy dress you could imagine! Plenty of fake blood dripping everywhere - it was hilarious!

Today I made it back to yoga after a gap of 6 days! And boy did it show!! I've made sure to pack my yoga mat to go to Portugal - can't leave it that long again! But it was lovely to be there - met up with Kevin and we had breakfast together after and talked for ages. We only meet up every few years but there's always plenty of yoga to talk about!

Tomorrow - Portugal!

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