Monday, November 15, 2010

Food, history and music

Well, things have been fairly busy of the past couple of weeks. I've started volunteering at 3MBS, the local volunteer-run "fine music" station. So far I'm working on the reception desk answering phones and doing some data entry and it's proving to be very interesting and the people most friendly. At the moment Friday afternoon is my time there but I'm quite flexible with my time and have made it clear that I'm available at other times as well.

Saturday was a market day at the Children's Farm - it had rained most of the night so the ground was rather soggy and the attendance was fewer than usual. I picked up a tasty goat's cheese tart which we (P&B and I) had on Saturday night. After the market we headed to Smith Street for lunch - we had an extraordinarily good meal at Huxtable, one of the numerous new eateries in this burgeoning part of town. The opposite side of the road has at least a dozen places to eat between Peel and Gertrude Streets, with more to come. I see this as a challenge.

After lunch we walked up to the Johnston Street bridge where we joined a walking tour arranged by the Collingwood Historical Society. Despite a slight change of route and almost constant rain we all enjoyed a very interesting talk given by Gary Presland covering the geology, aboriginal history and the earliest European exploration of the area. 

Yesterday I joined P&B again for a visit to Melbourne University on its Cultural Treasures Day. We went on a guided walk around campus learning about the history of the university - we finished the tour in the underground carpark under the south lawn, an extraordinary space which has appeared in many films and TV shows. After the walk we made our way to the Conservatorium for a concert by the Consort of Melbourne of music of Percy Grainger. As I had missed the two previous chances to hear this concert I was thrilled to be able to enjoy what was a very impressive concert - the highlight was possibly the two-piano version of Blithe Bells, though the Tribute to Stephen Foster was pretty amazing too.

Listening to: Joyce DiDonato, Colbran, the Muse, music of Rossini.

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