Bodies that fit into the living room? Fourteen, in fact. Adults. Plus two full-sized dogs, four teen-aged boys and two pre-adolescent girls. To be honest, apart from raids on the food table, the boys spent most of the evening listening to music in one of the cars outside. The two girls walked the dogs, then repaired downstairs to my bedroom with a book of mazes.
One friend who is tall and thin, used to collect giraffes and brought one as a gift. Another friend brought a second garden gnome, this one cast in plaster and showing serious signs of aging. (I’d never in a thousand years imagined I might end up with a collection of garden gnomes some day. But there you have it – only five gnomes short of Snow White’s buddies. My hair color’s right for the Snow White title, but precious little else.)
Plus books. Plus food and drink, including pear juice pressed that afternoon from windfall fruit. Plus a strange and wonderful light and metal sculpture.
While searching through the music collection for the evening, I happened across Florent Vollant’s Katak which for reasons unexplained, seems to crop up in my things every year around this time. Miam Maikan played in the background almost through the whole evening.
But this morning I awoke to Joan Baez singing in my head: “Here’s to you, Nicola and Bart, rest forever here in our heart, the last and final moment is yours and agony is your triumph.” Last heard many, many years ago in a Paris cinema as the movie Sacco and Vanzetti rolled to a close.
No surprise in that song cropping up, given the anarchist leanings of one of the characters in the current fiction – although I doubt he would listen to Joan Baez. But then, what do I really know about his musical preferences?
Oh yes, lest I forget: a musician friend’s breakdown of the instrumentation in the first part of Beethoven’s Allegretto from the Seventh Sympony. Beautiful details most people don’t notice, although they experience the magic produced by them. While the strings carry the melody, he said, other instruments play a kind of ping-pong exchange, one group playing a triplet while the other plays a quarter note, then switching around. Must listen for this, now that I know about it.