Monday, March 9, 2009

TX Trip - Part 3

(Written on March 03.)

The last day of the Van Cliburn auditions was Tuesday, and Trinity (with her baby son) picked Char & me up. We (Char and I) saw two pianists, but Trinity couldn't come in because of having her son with her. We felt bad that Trinity couldn't come in to hear the music, so Char went in search of her between performers, and called Trinity's cell phone several times, to no avail. Charity came back in. The first pianist, a young Russian (?) lady, was quite good, but not the best I'd seen. She seemed a bit nervous, and I was a bit nervous for her, being so close up and noticing her slightly trembling hands. (Or was that my imagination?)Add Image
The second young lady to play, however, looked very confident. She was Asian (named Ti Xin). I was sitting next to an Asian lady, who had gone backstage or had tried to, so I asked her if she was related to the pianist. "I wish," she said. Ti Xin's playing was brilliant and dynamic, strong and easy-looking, yet with hard pieces like Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2. She was probably my favorite out of everyone we had seen, and one of the best pianists, I think.

Trinity drove us home, and offered to drive us to the airport on Thursday (she's so sweet!).

Later that evening, Joel, Charity and I drove to where Esther Mcknight was nannying. Esther has been a friend of Charity's since their early days. The evening started out okay, with me helping Charity & Esther make salad. Then I misunderstood something Joel said to me and couldn't help crying and feeling awkward. Eventually, some time after Joel sweetly explained and apologized, I got over my emotions, thank the Lord (I was afraid for a while I wouldn't be able to stop). I was still not up to a lot of talking and was quite content to listen to Charity & Esther reminisce about old days and about growing old, etc. We four had gone out into the dark to swing on a wooden four-seated swing, so we talked and laughed and looked at the stars and joked about chickens. :) We finally went back in. Charity held the Mennonite woman's baby, and we shortly thereafter left for Joel & Char's place.

The next day, Charity and I started playing Big Boggle, then Literati online. We were in the same room on two different computers. It was fun. We didn't get to finish our game, though. Char asked Joel if he could drive home at lunch-time so we could have the car to go to C. again, this time to see Summer (Char's sister) and B.P. (Summer's son) and Melody (Char's sister) and Vanessa (friend). Joel came home, then we drove him back to work and went to eat (free) at Chick-fil-A. Then, following directions from Summer or Mel, we made our way to C. Seemed to take quite a while, but we made it just fine, first going to the birthing center (where Mel and Nes work), then over to Vanessa's new house, where Summer and B.P. were staying at the time. Surprisingly to me, B.P. took to me right away, holding up his arms to get picked up. He's only a year old, but fairly big for his age. He sat on my lap a while, too. Vanessa's two little dogs, Lola and Tilly, scrambled around rambunctiously. They're cute little black curly-haired dogs. We talked about baby names (etc.) after Melody and Vanessa came back from the birthing center. It was good to see them all. :)

Charity and I headed back and were actually quite early to pick Joel up from work (he was working later than usual). Char and I listened to music and talked on the way there and while waiting in the parking lot--fun times.

After Joel drove us back home, we had kale soup (a first for me--it was good) and cornbread for supper. They did some research for their trip to FL.

The next day, the day to leave, we packed up. Trinity came over and watched Sarah, Plain and Tall with Charity & me. It was their first time seeing it. I had seen it a couple times before, but enjoyed it again quite well, except Sarah may be a little too strong-willed and not as respectful of orders/desires as she should be, at times. Still a good movie--I enjoy the kids and the lightheartedness, the quietly growing love and the drama and sorrow. Charity & Trinity seemed to enjoy it, as well.

Trinity drove us to the airport and we said our goodbyes.

As we waited, a friendly, smiling man started chatting with us (after taking a picture of the three of us for us). We conversed a bit about kids and work and school. We went and bought some Jolly Ranchers and white cheddar popcorn. The man continued to converse with us. He asked what book I was reading--it was The Treasury of David by Spurgeon. He said he was a Catholic and asked us what faith we practiced. That was about the end of the conversation--we were soon to board the plane.

On the plane, an older gentleman had to get up to let me in my row. I had a window-seat, he had the aisle, and there was a space in between us. After a bit, the man offered, "That's a good book you have there."

"Yes, it is," I agreed, smiling.

"Spurgeon's a great writer."

I nodded enthusiastically. What a nice person to have sitting next to me.

We kept conversing, and I learned he was the president of Trinity College, where I've gone for piano lessons before and where some of my friends currently attend.

So it was interesting talking with him, and he was sympathetic when he heard about my dad passing away from cancer.

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