Concert night

The Houston Symphony sounded magnificent as usual last night. The Mozart piano concerto was first. The soloist was Lars Vogt. We were right at the back of the Mezzanine and I think a little too far away. Crappy seats, but you get what you pay for. By the time the piano notes reached my ears they seemed to be running together. I missed the usual Mozart clarity.

Then there was the Shostakovich symphony. Oh my God! Have any of you Habershons ever played it? Number 13 — choral (men-only choir and a bass soloist). I wasn’t familiar with it. So dark. It was in five movements, each one as depressing as the other. Even the Alegretto subtitled “Humour” was dark. Yevtushenko, the poet, read us the first poem before the music started. It was subtitled Babi Yar. Just click on the link to find out what it was about. I was tense for the entire performance. Even watching the percussionist climb up and down a ladder several times, riffle through the score, and then ring a funeral bell, couldn’t help me relax, or even meet John‘s eye for a giggle.

But . . . I loved it. The whole thing. It was loud, quiet, crashing, soaring, at times discordant, and . . . did I already mention this? . . . dark. John was ready to leave after the third movement, but then he did have his mind on the debate.

Long evening ahead

So the McCain/Obama debate is on tonight after all. John‘s going to be looking at his watch all evening. We have tickets to the Houston Symphony. It starts at 8 o’clock. Shostakovich’s 13th Symphony and Mozart’s 21st Piano Concerto, add in an intermission, and we should be home by 11. Then we’ll watch the recorded debate. Add in all the times John pauses it to offer his analysis, and we should be in bed by 2.

Maybe we should add in a stop at Starbuck’s on the way home.

A sticky weekend

Here we are on Day Ten and still without power. It’s getting wearing, to say the least. I’m starting to get antsy with people. Yesterday I went to yoga and plugged in my laptop and toothbrush in the staff room to recharge them. When I got out of class someone had unplugged them and replaced them with two power cords leading to … NOWHERE! It’s time now to use all my newly-found mental powers to stay calm and unruffled. Yeah.

We had a sweaty night last night as the temperature rises in Houston. I think the highlight of our weekend was the two trips we made in an air-conditioned car to Maui Wowi for smoothies! This morning I’m back at work with electrical items recharging all around me and a fresh chopped water melon in the refrigerator. John, of course, has it more difficult as he works from home. He recharged the UPS at his mother’s house and will have enough battery power to work today, but unfortunately the temperature will be rising to 90.

More than half of Houston now has power. I haven’t seen an updated list yet, but Friday’s said that 80% of the customers in our area would have it by tonight. We’ll see.

Hurricane Ike – Day Seven

No. We have no power. A list of Zip Codes with their electrical status has been published online. Unfortunately our Zip Code (77019) is in the ” … extensive damage, and will therefore have a restoration timeline that extends beyond Monday, September 22 …” block.

John continues to come up with ways to make life more comfortable, though. Last night I got home to find him hooking up a car battery (loaned by our neighbour) to a converter. He plugged in a lamp and we had light! Dim, but nice.

I can hardly wait to see what he comes up with tonight. I am fully expecting to come home to a floodlit house with “Ode to Joy” playing through the speakers and all our laundry washed and folded.

Hurricane Ike – Day Six

Still no power. According to a neighbour of a neighbour our line is damaged in three different places and will require a special crew. The people on the other side of the street have lights but not our side. Fortunately John’s business has it, though. They were back online at 7 o’clock this morning. Every client had been called over the last three days and hopefully the business has only lost three customers. And knowing John, I’ll bet he talks them into coming back. When I made calls for him on Monday I obviously didn’t leave a callback number when leaving messages as I was at work; however, one of them saw the Caller ID and called me the next morning (on my boss’s extension) and reamed me out for ten minutes, saying that we’d lost him $600,000 in business and that there should have been a better backup plan. He said he had attorneys standing by and would put us out of business. I felt quite battered by the time he’d done with me and am so thankful that I no longer work for (or own) an answering service. I won’t name the company here, but their business is cleaning up after crime scenes and tragedies. Dead bodies and stuff. EEK!

Otherwise, the weather remains gorgeous. I’m back to my yoga routine and feeling quite cheerful. I found some fresh fruit yesterday without having to stand in line. And John found some ice this morning. If there’s one thing I’d kill for right now it’s a battery-powered blender so I could make my daily berry-yogurt smoothie.

Living in the 19th Century

Even though we still have no power at home, we’re better off than the people of Galveston.

The weather remains perfect. We are sleeping with the windows open and I enjoyed the cool breeze on my face when I woke up this morning. Of course, the evenings suck! Our choices are to listen to local post-Ike coverage on our wind-up radio or to read using a lantern. How the heck did they manage in the old days?!

I’ve got to hand it to John, though, or should I call him Noah? He stocked up with supplies before Ike had even reached Cuba. Yes, I chuckled as he loaded batteries and toilet paper and paper towels and canned goods and bottled water into our shopping cart. He instructed me to fill up Wendy with gas the day before Ike hit. I’d never have thought of that. The needle is still on FULL as I drive past 20-car gas lines at the few stations that are open. Then as soon as our power went out on Saturday morning he brought out about five flashlights and a lantern. Never again will I giggle at his flashlight fetish collection. Oh, and I won’t get into all the details as I’m not really sure what he’s doing, but with the help of a Sprint card and one of our three UPSs (uninterruptible power supplies) he manages to let us have a tiny amount of internet each evening. And yes, I giggled each time he’s bought one of those things over the past several years. I’m just glad he hasn’t bought a generator, though. Our neighbour to the south has one. It’s loud and obnxious.

My man looks after me!

Three days after Ike

Still no power in our street. Both my jobs have it, though. Even the cafeteria downstairs was open yesterday so I bought a couple of sandwiches for dinner. My boss was nice enough yesterday to let John use an office so he could call all his clients to let them know what was happening. At 2:30 I started helping him with the calls, too. Reached 75 out of my list of 100. We got home at 8 p.m. and ate BLTs in the dark.

The fortunate thing about this is that the weather is absolutely gorgeous. Low 80s during the day, and in the 60s at night. Perfect temperature and we have all the windows open. Last night I slept eight hours solid. Luxury!

There’s a curfew in Houston from 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. so there won’t be any 6 a.m. yoga classes until that’s lifted. I do, however, teach the 4:30 today and will be overjoyed to take the 6:30. My body needs it!