Saturday, 20 December 2008

Good things about today:

  • Hovering in bed, slightly hungover having spent the preceding night with a bottle of cider and engaged in tipsy texting, enjoying the fact that I was still in bed and aware that, while I had masses to do when I got up, just then I could do nothing.
  • EVERYONE being pleased to see me when I went to tend the menagerie in Royston. Ebony was delighted with food and company and followed me about and purred. The ferrets were sleepy, but came out for a cuddle and watched me to and fro from the house. The rats climbed all over me and the garage, coming straight out of the cage when I opened the doors. Even the fish were attentive, not that I gave them anything. I don't want to interrupt any fish feeding schedules (the fish are Science more than Cuddles). BUGGER. Just realised I forgot to check on the gerbils. Have texted Christian to find out if I need to go back to them... Too many animals in one house. I'm hoping they're ok, I have Christmas 2 to have!
  • An hour spent wandering around the Chinese supermarket and Al Amin's on Mill Road, looking for bits and pieces for the brothers' Christmas presents while listening to Handel's Messiah very loudly on the ipod in order to learn the bit I was singing this afternoon. Those places are Aladdin's caves, and the peculiar juxtaposition with one of the most iconic pieces of Baroque English choral music in existence made me happy.
  • Turning up at Michaelhouse to sing a service one-to-a-part, with me singing soprano - and actually pulling it off in a way I was pleased with. We did the aforementioned bit of the Messiah ('And the glory of the Lord', for those interested in such things), 'O Magnum Mysterium' by Victoria and the final chorale ('Gloria sei dir gesungen') from Bach's Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme. Nothing particularly hard, though the Victoria's a bit awkward for this kind of thing - polyphonic and C16th and requiring a little bit of thought. I was really pleased with myself though - only cock up (that I count...) in the choral stuff was a bit I knew I'd fail at in the 'Alleluias' in the Victoria, which was rhythmically odd and I plain hadn't had time to get under my belt. I did accidentally start singing alto in the choir-only verse of 'O Little Town', which was embarrassing, though. I did it out of habit - almost ANY time I've sung that carol I've been singing alto in that verse, even at school because I sang that part when we did it choir only. Bah. That was silly. Fun descants and playing about though. AND Sam intimated that it might have been a money gig. Being paid for something that you'd have jumped at the chance to do anyway is the icing on the cake. It won't be much, but singing for money gives my very unstable singing self-esteem a huge boost.
  • Cycling home with the most magnificent sunset behind me all the way. I had to stop just to admire it at one point, in order to avoid getting run over as I peered over my shoulder. The sky was striped blue and pink from the towers in town to straight up above my head, and even further. Flourescent. It was amazing. The one day I didn't have my camera in my bag (I always have my camera in my bag). And it was barely visible by the time I got back to my western edge of Cambridge. It's a sort of sunset I've never seen anywhere except this little bit of the country. Something to do with the flatness and the coldness and the easterliness. Sublime, in the true sense of the word.
  • Coming back to the most amazing smell of goose and roast dinner across the whole street. Apparently, the answer to 'how does one cook roast geese for 15 in one oven' is not to, but to use next door's oven too. Martin's doing the thing properly, it's brilliant. Very impressive indeed - and I'm STARVING now, because I haven't actually eaten any of this yet. I won't know anyone tonight except my housemates, but having sat and chatted to early arrival Jen while peeling sprouts, I'm actually feeling positive about a party. Usually, I'm excited until the actual day, and then I hate the idea, hate the getting dressed and have to march myself out of the house telling myself I'll enjoy it in the end, and how can I not go by this point?
How good a day is that?! I mean, really. Busy as, and I didn't finish everything on the list of things to do, but I got most of the way there. But sometimes it's worth it in order to have a day like this one. And tomorrow looks pretty exciting, too. If I wake up in time, I have the option of singing up to twice tomorrow morning, then a break for lunch, in which I'm hoping to cook Graham-the-GSM-tenor a cake because it's his birthday, then a rehearsal, then a spend-it-in-a-coffee-shop-type break before the climax of all the carol services at 6:30. (Come, if you haven't got anything else to do - it really will be worth it. Be early though - the church will be packed!).

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