Saturday, November 14, 2009

Back To Rainy NYC, dreaming of myrtle berries and suckling pig...

It was an interesting 10 days, between the late night flight to Guatemala, our stay there and the hectic few days in Dallas. Flying during the whole night before the concert might just be the way to do it. I was so tired that I slept all the way to Guatemala, was greeted by a hearty breakfast of eggs, beans and coffee, rehearsed with Lucille and slept again. By concert time I was fresh as a rose (or a Guatemalan orchid)...

Guatemala is really a special place, and being there with Lucille for the first time made it even more so. Our stay in beautiful Antigua, at the amazing Posada de Los Leones (highly recommended) was like a new honeymoon.  As usual, we sampled, well, more like devoured the local food (including my favorite: pig's head and stomach soup), and just caught up on some much needed rest. We found a great partner in the Bravissimo Festival and are always thrilled to be back there.


Then to Dallas, for a few lessons at SMU. It's always great to be back and see our friends, but this time a visit to our great friend and extraordinary chef Francesco Farris' home was the highlight of our stay. This amazing Sardinian chef and artist invited us for a lunch that started at 1pm and ended after 10pm...yes, lunch. The company, the food and everything else was out of this world. For starters: house cured olives, pickles and anchovies. It took a whole day to cook a delicious suckling pig to perfection in the traditional woodburning oven Francesco built in his garden, and the whole day to cook the amazing black pork sauce for the Sardinian gnocchetti. Then the meal ended with generous samplings of Francesco's own Mirto, the traditional myrtle berry liqueur and a variety of international drinks...  Amazing friends and amazing experience. We can't wait to see them again at the end of November.

Now back in rainy NYC after a day of canceled flights and off to Connecticut for a meaty program of Rachmaninov and Shostakovich Cello Sonatas. Then an exciting week full of rehearsals for an Alice Tully CMS program, with more Rachmaninov (Suite no. 1) and Shostakovich (Concertino), this time for two pianos.

Ah, I can still smell the suckling pig.

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