Monday, July 16, 2007

Music Camp, Massage, and a Leafy View

“Do you have a group?” Ari, the director of the summer adult music program, asked when I showed up to register. I told him I was in 3 groups, paid my $100 registration fee, reserved a practice cabin, and waited around for the others to show up. What a difference 2 years makes.

As the new “campers” showed up, they confessed that they didn’t already have preformed groups and started asking the rest of us how good we were. I know that feeling of intimidation and fear, thinking about being placed with other musicians and asked to perform just 4 days later. If it hadn’t been for Deborah I would probably have walked out the first year. But as it is, we are the “senior” campers and as such we were asked to do an interview with someone from the Chautauqua Daily News.

Despite the rumor that the practice cabins had been air-conditioned, the ones we have access to are cooled only by what comes through the windows, which can be propped open with sticks. I signed up for 3 hours a day in cabin #61. As you can see, it has a nice piano, but little else in the way of amenities.

I was clearly in violation of the rule about drinks, with my water perched on the top of the piano.

After practicing for a while, I enjoyed a 90-minute massage at the St. Elmo Spa with Lauren, who did wonders for my neck and shoulder that have been hurting for a while now. It was actually one of the best massages I have ever had, and the good news is she might be moving to DC to go to grad school in English.

This afternoon I showed up to a 4:00 concert at 4:00 to find out that I couldn’t go in until the first piece was over. But the music was piped outside and I was able to look up at this beautiful canopy of leaves blowing in the breeze while I listened to the Chautauqua Woodwind Quintet. This group is made up of the principal flute, oboe, clarinet, horn, and bassoon players from the Symphony. I was able to sit just 15 feet away from them when I finally got to go in. This was music at its finest.

I visited the bookstore this morning and bought a Chautauqua sweatshirt so I won’t have to be cold any longer. With my luck it will probably warm up, but I am now prepared just in case cold mornings persist.

Bill is grilling salmon and making mashed potatoes, broccoli, and a baked banana dessert for dinner. I love to be waited on!


Blogger Kristin said...

Camp sounds perfectly loving except, well, the performing, which scares the life out of me. I'd love to listen.

8:29 PM  
Blogger steve said...

Yes Barbara, you are a flagrantly blatant violator of the rules!
Such a bad girl!

1:29 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Kristin -- What I've learned after 2 years is how not to set myself up for angst. This is supposed to be about having fun and relaxing and if you approach it right it can be.

Steve -- I'm sure many a water bottle has been set on the top of that piano. As far as I'm concerned they can use my $100 registration fee to remove any stray marks on their Kawais.

2:27 PM  

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