A night at the opera

 A couple weeks ago we had tickets to go hear a choir sing the Bach B minor mass (it's OK, it's a Lutheran mass). I sang with the choir for a while and contemplated going back for the B minor but it's the weekends...

Anyway we set off in good time for the tram journey to the theatre. It was TAMPING down (that is, it was raining very heavily indeed).

We got to Porte de Bourgogne where you change trams to go to Mérignac and the theatre. "Trams interrupted till 8pm". We had no chance of getting there on time. We returned home, dampened in body and spirits.

Last night the Bordeaux opera chorus were putting on a programme of Arvo Pärt. I'm very pärtial to Pärt, so I asked Pat if she'd like to go. She's never knowingly heard any Pärt so she said yes.

It was in the Grand Théâtre. We could walk there, even through a blizzard, so I was confident that this time we'd be present. But just to make sure I thought we could go for a pre-concert drink in the Bar à Vin of the Maison du Vin just opposite the theatre.

This place is the apotheosis of Bordeaux, a classy room with sofas and small tables, a stained glass window of Dionysus and bas-reliefs of quotations about the civilisation of wine. They don't do meals, but you can get a platter of cheese or of charcuterie with really good bread. And the wine ranges from 2,50€ a glass upwards. It's designed to promote Bordeaux wines to visitors and to help you find out what you like. The waiters refuse to serve anyone who's there to over-indulge or anyone who has already sufficiently indulged. It's a very classy place.

So we spent an hour slowly sipping Bordeaux's best, then sauntered over to the theatre, there to find at least half of the members of Alan's choir attending too. We were sat next to one alto. The choir director was sitting opposite us, on the other side of the hall.

I really like Arvo Pärt's music, but it leaves me emotionally drained and crushed. It's the effort of all that hope in the darkness. But the folk I talked with said "It was beautiful, wasn't it?" 

And indeed it was. I overthink things.



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