Friday, 22 April 2011

A few people have asked now what Motuz Confectus means. Well, it's a pun. Oh well. "Motus confectus" is an early and slightly more noble version of a frottola, which is an early version of the madrigal. The frottola flourished in Italy at the end of the 15th and early 16th centuries. Oh yes, and again briefly in 2009.

It's been 25 and sunny for almost two weeks now, whilst today it snowed in Montreal. I've changed my mind, I'm staying here.


Last weekend I think I finally digested that I'm moving back to Montreal - it's starting to feel exciting and not just an excuse to turn my life completely upside-down. The process of digesting involved a lot of lying about and staring at various white surfaces, alternating with hiding under the covers, until finally on Sunday evening I decided I'd better play a bit of trombone to make sure I was in good shape for my Easter services. Glad I dragged myself out of bed - Good Friday music is especially tiring but especially worth it. Caldara, Draghi and Tuma all worked in Austria at a time when there were virtuosi trombonists about, so there are lots of nice solo bits, and because it's Good Friday it's full of delectable dissonances too. It's all on alto trombone, which in one piece with no rests is particularly taxing, so to celebrate that I'd held onto practice discipline despite all my lying about in a daze the crucial three days before, I threw in a few gratuitous trills. I'll behave more in the concert tomorrow.

Today the flights to Canada this summer, when I'll need to go on an I'm-moving-back admin trip (woohoo) went down, some by 50 francs, and one by 300. Yey! But that one was from Geneva to Toronto via Brussels, leaving so early in the morning I'd have to find a place in Geneva the night before. Airlines, airlines - why do you play with my head so? After deciding that I'd be slightly miffed if no similar prices for a more convenient connection showed up but really extremely disgruntled if one did and I'd already bought this one, I gave it a pass. Besides, my mental health is worth far more than the 80 francs the flight would have really saved me after trains to Geneva and from Toronto are considered.

I've had a pretty relaxed week, finally getting out to enjoy the sunshine on Monday, when I went to Bern to catch up with Alison, who is here for a Feldenkreis course. In the forest along the banks of the Aare we found some Bärlauch, or wild garlic, and collected some leaves. We then bought some walnuts and, with a potato masher, mashed it all up with oil and a bit of salt and had pasta with Bärlauch pesto - yum!

I'm also entering cheesecake experimentation mode - I think my white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake for Caroline's 30th birthday party on Friday (after an excellent concert by the Habsburger Camerata with whom she plays) went down rather well. But today's attempt at tofu-based cheesecake, while no disaster, is really only enjoyable doused with rhubarb compote. Otherwise it still tastes mostly like tofu. Or chalk. Oh well. It's healthy enough that I can eat it for breakfast tomorrow with no guilt whatsoever.

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