For Sarah, I took a picture of our Charlie Brownish Tree. I’ll take a picture of it again when it’s looking a little more spruce-d up! Har Har.
The weekend has been really good so far. On Friday we headed over to Worco, a factory co-op where Cam used to make his business card boxes. It’s a great place where the members have studio spaces and there are all types of craftsmen and artisans there; furniture restorers and makers, leadlighters, sculptors, instrument makers, and blacksmiths, and so on and so forth. We happened to drop in on the day they had their Christmas Barbeque, so that was a yummy stroke of luck!
Caught up with Alastair McAllister, a world renowned harpsichord maker, and very sweet guy who is constantly telling jokes and Warren Nolan-Fordham, a violin maker, who had us chuckling as well. I looked at Warren’s bench and I still am amazed that a precise and elegant musical instrument comes straight from a dense pile of wood shavings, dusty antique bottles of glue and polish, and a hodge podge of tools. He had a surprise for us as well. An instrument he recently acquired, called a stroviol. It’s a turn-of-the-century violin (of sorts) that has a small victrola-like bell attached to it which makes it sound almost like it’s being played on a 78 record. It’s also got a small piece that you can sing or whistle into as you play, and it amplifies it. As soon as he started to play I was aware of a huge smile of delight spreading across my face. It was too cool! We took pictures of it, but now that I think about it, maybe we’ll go back a take a mini-movie of it and see if I can’t post it up here! But for now here are the pics:
Warren playing the stroviol. (Alastair is in the background)
A close up of the stroviol.
After going to Worco, we headed to Mum and Dad’s, to have dinner with friends of the family, Christine and Leslie. We received a set of pretty glasses from them as a gift, and had a fine time talking at dinner. The menu was delicious: pea and ham soup, pickled pork (tastes like corned beef) and homemade applesauce, and veggies. Also a few lovely glasses of wine and later on, cheese and crackers.
Christine is an survivor of leukemia and an athlete who competes (and wins gold) in the Transplant Games. She carried the torch in the relay for the Summer Olympics and is set to do it again for this year’s Winter Olympics. Very active and involved person. She is a nurse as well, and is often traveling around the world to compete in athletic events or go to various concerts with college students. Anyway, it was nice to talk to her and Leslie again to catch up on the news from the past year.
When the guests had left, Mum, Cam and I stayed up till one, talking over pistachios and dry gingerale. Yum, again.
Today we swung round to Daniel’s for a quick visit, and tea/coffee (and a taste of homemade wine). He’s planted corn and sunflowers in his yard, and they are looking great! We laughed at the cat swatting at a piece of green corn husk on the floor in the kitchen and running away from Daniel’s whistling through his teeth. Daniel insists it’s a very good skill to have, in case you need to laugh at something while you are whistling.
The drive home was beautiful, as it was a sunny day, but slightly windy. Goldie was very happy to see us, and I made some banana fritters for a late lunch and we listened to Christmas songs while checking email and putting clean sheets on the bed. No plans for tomorrow yet. But I’m going to try to get a walk in, to help combat the total food blow-out of the past two days! But, it was really cool to hang out with some of the most interesting people I’ve had the pleasure to meet. Must do lots more of it in the New Year as well!
*UPDATE* The video of the stroviol:
Warren Nolan Fordham Playing the Stroviol