Saturday, April 30, 2016
The final major project on the Priscilla Beach Theatre campus was well underway upon my return to the area. This new wooden structure is the new Outdoor Pavilion, a permanent structure that will replace the seasonal white circus-style tent of years past.
Two of the three main beams that span the width of the performance and audience area are in place.
The third beam is being installed here with the aid of a hydraulic lift. The huge laminated beams are heavy!
All three are now installed but, there are quite a few holes to drill to bolt it all together.
The view from the Barn......
....and the view from the audience side.
Here is the architect's early rendering of the finished project. Looks like the real thing - except for the trees.
Friday, April 29, 2016
Priscilla Beach Theatre (PBT) began the 2016 performance season in partnership with Sacred Heart Elementary School's production of "Charlotte's Web" on the Barn Stage. Here, the cast posed for portraits during a final rehearsal.
Priscilla Beach Theatre offers a wide range of performances featuring both children's workshops and world class adult classics. The newly restored vibrant and dynamic PBT campus has three performance venues for every type of performance need. Contact PBT by phone at 508-224-4888 for tickets and reservations or online at pbtheatre.org.
Support local live theatre in our community or wherever you live in the world!
Thursday, April 28, 2016
It is disorienting to arrive home when spring is already well underway. Last I remember, it was snowing and cold. Although it is still chilly, seeing a forsythia bush blooming yellow and the grass greening are clear proof that winter is over.
The birders are out at Manomet Point observing the spring migration.
The seals are lazing around enjoying the longer days and increasing warmth.
Yep, life is good in Manomet.
My yard flowers - some folks call them weeds.
A faint hint of color around the pond perimeter.
And indoors, spring is happening also.....
.....tulips in the late afternoon sun.
A sunset selfie as reflected in a 2007 Honda gearshift.
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
To conclude a long trip, I sometimes puzzle over the final blog post. What's a good visual summary that evokes the location? We've been here in Spain for about two months - in good weather and bad, in good times and in bad, in health and in sickness.
I decided that the final image should include the nation's iconic animal - the land of the bull! The quartet above was most obliging in posing.
Goodbye Spain, thanks for the wonderful memories and sights along the way. I look forward soon to sleeping in my quiet bed, in quiet Manomet, in a land where I can speak the language. Travel is a strange and magical and unpleasant and wonderful thing all at once.
Each time I travel I am struck by what a strange thing it is that people all over the world speak different tongues. It is amazing that there isn't even more strife in the world with the challenges and nuance of communication and miscommunication.
Not being a linguist, I must rely on others and my few wits, and pointing, and smiling, and hoping for the kindness of strangers. When I am home and pass a stranger, lost, confused, non-English speaking, I try to stop and help. Maybe I'm not much help but, the kindness and the gesture can make an incalculable difference in someone's journey along their road as a visitor in a strange land. I want to return the thousand kindnesses others have shown me.
So, in case you are wondering, maybe there is a fence between me and these four bulls - and maybe there isn't - I'm not telling but, let's just say I can still move pretty fast for an old guy...........Addios! Spain!
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Wandering the backstreets, I was struck by the crowd of people at this Chocolateria. First of all, what is a "chocolateria?" And second, why are there so many people in line for service?
I came back later with Amy to try out their offerings. It turns out that the San Gines Chocolateria is an iconic establishment in central Madrid and has been open for the past 120 years, drawing locals and tourists alike to their churros and hot chocolate.
This is basically the only thing on the menu - churros and hot chocolate - served by white-shirted waiters/waitresses. For about four Euro, you too can enjoy fried dough and dark hot chocolate at one of Madrid's iconic spots. There was a line at midday, late afternoon, and evening - people here love their chocolate and churros!
And always - everywhere - stores - displays - or live - music and musical instruments...........
Monday, April 25, 2016
Plaza Mayor is a popular plaza in use since the early 1600's. Restaurants and retail shops ring the perimeter of the grand courtyard and the area is a magnet for residents and tourists alike to hang out, eat, drink, shop, see and be seen.
There is a covered arcade around the perimeter with shops on the ground floor. The higher floors are apartments that surround the plaza and are prime real estate of great value.
A popular tourist diversion is posing in traditional attire.
Some folks look pretty good.......
....and others - not so much.
In fact, some people look better by not even participating.
Sunday, April 24, 2016
Against a background of blue sky and blue advertising in Puerta del Sol, I caught a skateboarder doing this cool aerial trick. (To be honest though, it is actually a static display of performance art, the artist hoping to entice the tourists to drop a Euro or two contribution in the hat).
Sitting at a sidewalk cafe in the warm sunshine, I enjoyed a blue bottle of water as we people-watched for an hour or so. I like the forced perspective appearance of the out-sized bottle arranged next to the human passerby.
Blue skies over the Royal Palace, the flag of Spain standing brightly in the breeze.
Saturday, April 23, 2016
It was a picture perfect day - blue skies, puffy clouds, light breeze, and a gentle chill in the air. Springtime flowers in bloom and love in the air in the Plaza de Oriente on the west side of the Teatro Real.
Just sitting in the warm sunshine outside the Royal Palace was a perfect activity for the day.
Or, leaning against a wall in the warmth was a close second.
Babies, beers, and tapas.
Table for eight?
Portions instead of tapas were common in some tourist areas - a bigger serving and a bigger price.
Flowering pear trees line this pedestrian-only street near Teatro Real where these long shadows attracted my eye. Spring is well underway here although behind the Seville area since Madrid is father north and at a higher elevation.
Friday, April 22, 2016
The journey towards home continues. We drove six hours from Jerez to Madrid to turn in our leased car and spend the last three days in downtown Madrid before flying home to the United States. These two folks I found wandering about near the Royal Palace. This is not how regular Spaniards dress but, these two folks wander around posing for photographs and then expect some tip/compensation - looks like an effective way to make a living - tourists caught up in the moment are always willing to spend a Euro on impulse - even a cheapskate like me - I gave them a Euro to share but they insisted on one each.
Looking into the side courtyard of the Royal Palace
A produce stand inside the Mercado de San Miguel near Plaza Mayor. The sign says, in eight languages, "Do Not Touch." But they were so perfect and juicy...........I only touched one very gently - honest.
This fine establishment near Puerta del Sol is the Museo del Jamon which I guess translates as the Ham Museum. That would normally surprise me but, after two months in Spain, nothing related to ham surprises me anymore.
Frankly though, I think the term "museum" is stretching the truth. As far as I could tell, it was simply a retail store selling all things ham.
Usually, the device that holds the pig's leg for slicing the thin pieces is on the other side of the counter from the public. For this one, however, they cut out part of the glass counter-top so the hoof was up close and personal to interested folks. If they could only figure out how to make vegan ham.......