Monday, September 18, 2006


Performing at the Moonah Arts Centre this month were the Celtic music ensemble Ethereal. It was standing room only in the candle-lit hall for an hour of dreamy music divided between traditional favorites and original pieces.

The five ladies are certainly versatile. The run-down read as follows:
  • Helen Morrison - cello and drums
  • Fran Docking - vocals, folk harp and guitar
  • Julianne Green - folk harp and tambourine
  • Lynne Mitchell - flute whistles, harmonium and castanets
  • Mieka Tabart -vocals, violin and cymbal

I think this is the first time I've seen a harmonium played. You couldn't see any of the controls from where I was sitting, just a big box that was apparently played by moving one side back and forth. (Curiously it bore a metal plate reading "Calcutta Music Depot.")

A close inspection after the concert suggests it has a lot in common with bagpipes or the piano accordion in principle. My dictionary defines it as "a free-reed instrument in which air is forced through the reeds by bellows".

There'll be a CD launch on the waterfront at 7:30pm on Friday December 15th at The Venue in Salamanca Place. Going on this night, there'll be quite a crowd there.

Saturday night we were out to a dinner party in South Hobart. My sister groaned "I can't believe I'm so sick this week. I've been looking forward to tonight for weeks and I have a cough like a seal barking." This possibly contributed to her locking the keys in the car when we arrived for dinner.

They say you can't drown your problems, but she had a good try at making them swim for it. The retsina and the sambuca were flowing freely, but since I was driving home I confined myself to a couple of flutes of champagne.

The meal was Greek-themed, probably because our host was leaving next week for the Greek Islands. In fact judging by the conversation most of the guests seemed to be just about to leave the country and I felt like the odd one out in never having held a passport.

Julie wasn't too bad the next day, though I notice she did wear dark glasses to church in the morning! By that time I was started to develop the same symptoms as her, and we scrubbed a possible trip to the Playhouse to see Hobart Rep's production of Peter Pan in favor of resting at home. From the barking coming from my house, you would have thought a pair of over-zealous watch-dogs were in residence.

The congregation at church was a bit thin this morning. Nothing to do with the quality of preaching, merely that this was the first weekend of the school holidays and the exodus of families going on vacation always makes a difference. At least it meant that the kids next door weren't playing basketball while I was taking a nap in the afternoon.

This may be a sign of the times - I notice in the local shop's stationery shelf that there is a choice of two or three brands of DVD-R discs, but they no longer stock CD-R discs. From this we may infer two things: the increasing prevalence of DVD burners, and the larger size of files that people want to save to disc. The days of 1.4MB on a floppy disc being any use are gone forever I suspect.

Listening to the ABC Drive show on radio this afternoon, they were asking for poems about Spring. This is the haiku I wrote while listening to the segment:

At the equinox
somewhere in the underbrush,
a sneezing cat prowls.

If you knew Julie's cats, you'd understand it.

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