We spent last weekend in Albuquerque, NM visiting my son Mark. He plays in the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra and it was the season opener. Great concert. I thought I wouldn't like the contemporary piece but ended up loving it. Most contemporary composers write stuff that sounds like screeching birds. Ida Kafavian was the violin soloist who played the work by Bill Dougherty. He wrote the work after seeing Diego Rivera's murals that depict working in Detroit on assembly lines and other blue collar work. The music was wonderful plus the symphony showed sections of the mural on a large screen above the orchestra. My son had lots of solos in the piece.
You can see his murals at www.diegorivera.com.
We also got to experience great rain storms while we were there. Albuquerque has been in a drought for about 7 years. Now this summer they are setting records for rainfall. I love the storms which are complete with thunder and lightning. They are fierce but don't last very long. It rains enough, however, to fill up the concrete arroyos that whisk the water to the Rio Grande River so the town doesn't flood. We don't get storms like that in California very often. Because of all the rain, the desert is in bloom. We took a hike in an open space area and saw beautiful flowers like the ones in the photo which Kerry took.
And the food, well, Albuquerque has lots of wonderful places to eat. Probably the dish I remember most is a dessert called the Chocolate Pot at the Charma River Brewery. There are actually two pots. The larger one contains a creamy, rich dark chocolate that is hot. The second pot is smaller and contains a creamy vanilla pudding-like mixture that is served cold. First you get a small spoonful of the hot chocolate and then you dip it in the creamy vanilla. Yum. It is scrumptious.
I managed to stay away from spicy food by being a lot more diligent in my ordering. I don't enjoy spicy stuff and my stomach doesn't like it either.
We spent our last day trainwatching with my son. He loves trains. We wemt to a very busy spot northwest of Albuquerque and just waited for trains to come through. Then he took pictures of the trains. His train fixation started when he was three and has not abated. It's just changed.
And my friend Beverly and I spent several hours in our favorite shoe store in Albuquerque. I got two pairs and she tried a lot on but didn't buy. We wear the same size and both have wide feet so it's great fun to shop with her. The sign on the window of the store says, "If you are looking for your wife, she's probably here." The store is "Shoes on a Shoestring". There are two in Albuquerque and one in Phoenix. The prices are great.
The temperature here is wonderfully cool so I'm going back to gardening.
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