This was the first opera I saw on my honeymoon in Paris in 1950 and it just gets better and better. I also prefer the original German to French. This new production featured the amazing puppets, costuming, and special effects of Lion King’s Julie Taymor. The humor, the acting, and the singing were perfect, especially Christopher Maltman as Papageno and Erika Miklosa as the Queen of the Night. Big thanks to my niece, Margaret Magill, a violinist with the Met orchestra, who was able to get me tickets for the opening night.
This was also the first time I had seen the new fountain at Lincoln Center. The night couldn’t have been more beautiful—a warm, balmy, sit-outside-in-a-café sort of evening on the cusp of autumn. The whole area is one that those of you who visit the Big Apple must not miss.
Waves crashing into the breakwater
…And now I can put the summer to rest. There is a magnetic pull exerted by this vast, untamed lake and the “Noble Cottage,” our family haven for over fifty years, so when I find a few days of Indian Summer I cannot resist one last visit. Well, the days were warm and sunny last week, but the nights were anything but! Try thirty degrees. I made a quick trip to the Franconia Range for a visit with Anne and Frank Magill, my wonderful sister and brother-in-law, who were celebrating 57 years of marriage, before returning to a three-day-blow on the lake, with ocean-sized waves and water to rival the North Atlantic in winter. No matter. Swimming is what I wanted to do, and I got my fill.
Just before sunset...
I always love to watch the movement of the sunset from its place directly in front of the cottage in June to its new position way over to the left of our dock in September. And there is a light just before it sets that speaks to me in tones of white and yellow, the mysterious light of impending winter.
Now the day is over...
After three glorious weeks in New Hampshire and three more in the Northwest (Seattle, Whidbey Island, and the Northern Cascade Mountains), I returned to the reality that I had more to deal with than the hundreds of backed-up emails (Will I never learn to post that vacation message?). A new year beginning (I always think of September as the new year, since that is when the kids returned to school after the summer), several book ideas fighting for dominance, and the sober facts of national and international conflict that have changed very little during my NYTimes hiatus. I loved being away, but now it’s back to work . I began with a speech at the South Orange Rotary Club last Thursday, to a group of responsive business leaders, who responded with enthusiasm to my subject, “Traveling off the Beaten Path,” and showed great interest in the orphanage project in Zimbabwe I’ve written about in this blog. I also told them about the Tibetan Childrens’ Villages (TCV) I had visited and help support in India. Thank you, President Stacey Borden for the wonderful reception. Please write me if you want any more information about these two important projects. My grandson, Adam, has been working hard on a prospectus to help raise money for the orphanage, spurred on by the encouragement of Greg Mortenson, whom he met last spring.
I’ve been told to write my blog more often and keep it short! I get the message. I’ll be posting photos of my summer trips next week. In the meantime, let’s hear about your summer adventures!