26 June 2013

Today's Playlist

 I harvested mint from my parents' yard today, some to dry, and some leftover to figure out what to do with fresh.  Maybe some Indian chutney?  Maybe some minty summer (non-alcoholic) drink to offer my parents when they arrive home from their anniversary trip this evening?

When I first arrived here this summer, my dad showed me the beautiful patch of mint growing, and reminded me that I had given him a couple of shoots with their root ball when they moved here.  It was somehow delightful and comforting to have the "offspring" of my own plant from Washington state when I had just come from Virginia.  It made me feel more like I have roots right now, during this transition time of life.

While I plucked leaves for the dehydrator, it dawned on me that I again have access to the wonderful recordings on YouTube.  It has been quite some time since I had internet at home, thought I, so that I could do serious listening from the kitchen.

Then like lightning it struck me:  One year ago today, I took comprehensive exams for my master's degree.  What a day it was!  Six hours of essays and theory problems to solve.  I love solving theory problems, to tell you the truth, so it was not a loathsome six hours.  Just very intense.  All at once.  My hand felt weary from writing at the end of the day.  I visited the grocery store directly afterward, and added up my purchases in mod twelve.  Exactly like I would if I was analyzing a twelve-tone row, or a pitch class set.  

So today, I'm listening to favorite pieces from the repertoire.  Pieces I've studied in depth, pieces I grew to love the more as I studied them the more.  Some, I'm listening to more than once.  Since I have to get right back to my mint leaves, then my lunch, and then the strawberry patch, I won't write about each piece.  But you'll write and tell me if there's more you want to know about any of them, right?  I hope you love them as much as I do!
Brahms Variations on a Theme by Haydn
Vienna Philharmonic, 1973


 Mendelssohn "Reformation" Symphony
Conducted by Leonard Bernstein (hence his photo above)

Charles Ives Symphony No 2
This video also has the particular delight of an explanation of the symphony and introduction to Charles Ives himself by Leonard Bernstein, which is incredibly worth listening to.  Then once that's finished, listening to Symphony No. 3 ("The Camp Meeting"), my favorite, is also a wonderful use of your time.


1 comment:

  1. Oh, I don't know what it is to live without internet or a computer. Only for short periods of time in Brazil.
    I'm really a "spoiled brat" in this regard!

    OK, awesome mint drink: fresh pineapple, fresh mint leaves, ice water or water & some ice and sugar to taste in the blender (PERFECT for the Vitamix).

    We drink this fresh juice a lot in Brazil.

    more mint uses: chopped fresh into a tabouleh salad (either made of bulghur wheat or quinoa)...

    you can make tea/ iced tea... and I know there's more stuff, but I can't remember it now.

    I miss you. I wish you were here. Thank the Lord for the internet!


Greetings, fellow climbers! Leave your marks on the steps--I'll be delighted to hear from you.