January 31st, 2006


Parts is parts?

Last night Tom asked higher-altos (first altos) to volunteer for second soprano parts when they come up (that is, when the sopranos separate) in the Bach. I stayed in that group, because I tend toward high, and when Tom heard us run through some exercises he was happy with us. So I ended up singing second soprano on some of the movements in the mass.

It hit me suddenly - what was I thinking? - that I was doing quite well with this mass even though this was only the second rehearsal because so much has stuck with me from the last time we sang it, eleven years ago. And now I have to wrest myself from my comfort zone to sing another part. Fortunately not for the whole piece.

What I didn't expect was how my heart lingered in the alto section when I was not singing alto. I think I am an alto by temperament, by voice, and by some vague thing similar to soul. I would be a cello if I were an instrument. I wonder if I could be happy as a second soprano as a full-time part.

Sometimes Tom moves sopranos into the alto section when they have reached an age where their voices just can't hack the high notes. I have talked to some of these women and they say they find the alto part fun and challenging, which of course it is! Unless I take up singing lessons I am unlikely to move in the other direction, and perhaps that's a good thing.


Yesterday I bought a new pair of goggles. Pink straps! Some kind of coating. I wore them in the pool today. And wo!! What vision! I could see all of the little bubbles I made in crystal clarity, and I could see the other swimmers perhaps better than I wanted. I watched, at one point, the bubbles left by another swimmer as they were lit by a ray of light from the sky. Nice. The pool is an enclosed outdoor pool, meaning no heat in the enclosure, mostly just glass, which means quite a bit of sunlight gets in there. But not the beating-down type you get in an outdoor summer pool.

Then later I finally got my new xm radio to work! Again with the clarity! I am going to love this. More than once this afternoon I wanted to get in the car and go someplace just to listen. I can listen online, too, but not as many channels and not always as clear. Even my little treks to Santa Maria are going to be different now.