Saturday, June 18, 2005

Just Catching Up

Wow -- so much has been going on that I just haven't had the chance to sit down and catch up on the blog. Work is a total madhouse, as usual -- worse now that it's deadline time -- and by the time the end of the work day arrives, the last thing I want to do is sit at the computer and type some more.

Anyway, the best news is that Greg's Water song cycle was so well received in New York that he's had a request to record it in 2006. One of the Board members of the ACA asked Greg whether he would score the piece for full orchestra and record it, so he's in the process of talking about it. In the meantime, he's busy getting things (pieces and a presentation) ready for the Oregon Bach Festival. He leaves on Tuesday and returns a couple of weeks later. This will be the longest time we've ever been apart, I think. I designed him some pretty neat-looking business cards, using the same typeface and one of the photographs from his Web site.

Wow... this is like living with a rock star! Do you think it's too soon for me to get myself a pink or black T-shirt with "I'm With the Band" screened across the front?

Greg has also been working away furiously on the Sax Quartet. He might want to have that played at BU sometime during the next school year. He means to make some more headway on Niagara as well, but the sax piece has been calling him most strongly of all his pieces-in-progress these days.

You have to love Google. I'm not sure what I was looking for at the time -- maybe I was checking where Greg's Web site was ranked in a Google search -- but I discovered a Google link to my blog in the same search and the description of my blog, "...frequently intertwined with the life of Maine composer Gregory Hall." We both liked that very much; it certainly wasn't the work of a Web crawler. ("Frequently intertwined..." I like that phrase, but it doesn't quite describe the reality of the situation. That is, unless by "frequently," one means "every waking moment and the sleeping ones too, in the shower and in the car, day and night, you are the one, only you beneath the moon and under the sun..." You get the idea -- and the Cole Porter reference.)

The organist business sure seems to be picking up, too. Greg has already been booked for two weddings and has played a memorial service. In addition, the organist for one of the local Catholic churches asked whether he could fill in for her for two Saturday Masses a week during the summer. (Apparently she's having surgery and will be recuperating for an unspecified period of time. She plays two Masses on Saturdays, one in the "regular church" in the city, and one in the "summer church" nearer the beach.) Anyway, this should keep him busy on the weekends for a while. The choir at his regular church breaks for the summer, so his Sunday work won't be quite as demanding until the school year starts.

Puppy Business

Gill emailed from Wales that Menna had "missed," and that there won't be any puppies from her this year. Gill has tried quite a few times with this same sire and has never had any luck (though other folks have), so she intends to try again next year with a different (but related) dog. In the meantime, one of her young males (less than a year old) managed to escape his crate and have a bit of a dalliance with one of the girls who was in season, so there might be puppies later on in the year. The puppies would certainly have lovely pedigrees, even if they were a bit of a "whoops" litter. Gill is now waiting to see whether there will even be a litter. If there is, I have the option of taking one of those pups. Only then will I know whether I'm headed to Wales this year. Truth be told, I'd be just as happy hanging out with our current two for a while before raising a little one, but we'll see what happens when it happens.

As for the current pack of puppies around here, Seamus is settling in nicely. He and Charlie get along famously, and he's turning out to be about the best little buddy one could ask for. He's still no picnic in the car, but things will get better with practice. We start obedience class this week, and that should help. Seamus is already obedient, but having to ride in the car so often will help get him more inured to the motion. He doesn't complain on highways, just on the bumpy, potholed secondary roads.

Next Saturday, the boys and I are off to Massachusetts to a Beardie Bounce at a friend's house. I've been an on-and-off member of the Minuteman Bearded Collie Club for many years -- I have quite a few friends in the club, but it's hard to drive all the way down there for meetings and functions. This will be Seamus's "social debut" in the regional "Beardie society." I'm sorry Greg won't be around to see it because he'll still be in Oregon at the time. He's been to a Sheepdog event and seen how laid-back those can be, but he hasn't yet experienced the ever-moving, ever-bouncing spectacle of a group of Beardies playing together. There will be a kiddie pool, and Charlie will definitely spend much of the day in it. The club has also constructed a rally obedience course out there, so Seamus and I get to try it out and see if rally-o might be a sport we'd enjoy together.

Fare Thee Well

I've noticed lately that some people have decided to give up on blogging entirely. Some have talked about removing one more demand from already crammed-to-the-rafters lives, and some have simply decided to stop. No notice, nothing. You just click on a link one day and they're gone. It's as though they moved and left no forwarding address. They just decided to move out of the community.

My own blog has suffered from neglect of late, but I have no plans to pack up and move out of Blogtown just yet. At first, I felt guily if I didn't post something every day, or every other day in a pinch. Nowadays, I feel fortunate if I have the time to stick to a more-or-less weekly schedule. Don't the rest of you go anywhere just yet, okay?

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