Friday, June 16, 2017

A Thoroughly Pleasurable Week-end.

Time has slipped by, and I've been meaning to post about the lovely week-end Rajan and I had with a succession of special friends. It started on Friday evening when we went with Melanie and Craig Briggs to the city of Ourense, where a favorite fadista, Maria do Ceo, was giving a free concert in the Plaza Mayor. She was also sharing a new CD, this one for children.

Maria do Ceo has great presence onstage, and her voice is magical — expressive and emotional, as Fado should be. Gracious as always, she took time with people from the audience afterwards who

came up to speak to her and have pictures taken with her.

Add caption

We had arrived early on purpose, to make sure we had good seats. We were able to snag a good table  to one side, but quite close from which to enjoy the performance. Before the program began, we enjoyed a glass of wine with Craig and Melanie and watched the crowd as the plaza filled up.

Before that, as we walked through an adjacent plaza set up with kiosks advertising Portugal's fiestas, a familiar voice called, "Elizabeth!" It was a young woman at Braga Turismo (Cristina) who has helped me with information for my Braga mystery. What a pleasant surprise!
Our house

Craig and Melanie, by the way, sold us our house in Trasulfe, which we love very much.

They have another house they are selling that you can look at HERE. Craig has also written three books about their adventures in Galicia since they came about 15 years ago. You can learn more about his books and how to contact them HERE .

Saturday, our friend Jacki Edmonds visited from England. We met Jacki years ago when she lived on a farm in the province of Ourense. Even though she has returned to England, she frequently visits Galicia, and she introduced us to Elvira and José, about whom I wrote earlier.

Jacki is an artist who specializes in pet portraits and wild life portraits. She painted a picture of our
dog, Cezar, that has "pride of place" on one of our walls in Sacramento. Just seeing this portrait of him makes us miss him. Currently she works mainly in pastel pencils—you can see samples of her work at her website HERE . You can also visit her Facebook page HERE

I forgot to take pictures during her visit, because I was so interested in catching up on her news. Then Monday morning just before she left, I scrambled to get the camera and took turns with Rajan to get a couple of good photos. I think she is going to be one of those eternally young people, largely because she is full of energy and so interested in life.

Add caption
Meanwhile, Sunday, our good friends Terri and David Anderson had invited us all to lunch at their house.

Terri is an excellent cook and hostess, so her small dinners always have the sumptuous offerings of a party. (And she has given some wonderful parties, too.) Another friend, Mandy Rainy, joined us and brought her dog, Frankie, a rescue dog with a sweet disposition. (Rajan and I are dog people, so we were doting on Frankie all evening.) I forgot my camera, but Jacki took some good pictures:

Add caption
I have Terri and David to thank for hearing Maria do Ceo the first time during the summer of 2013. Things come full circle.
Add caption

   Rajan and I were taking turns with one of us traveling while the other stayed home to care for Cezar, whose health was failing.  Rajan came in April. I came in June. Terri and David took me to a special anniversary dinner for the restaurant/casa rural Rectoral Castillon one evening, when to celebrate the event, Maria do Ceo was the star. I had never heard Fado before then, but I became hooked on this art form immediately, and later Rajan became equally hooked. As I say, things come full circle.


Rosi said...

I would say your life is pretty good. Enjoy your time over there.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Thanks, Rosi. The time is flying by! I've enjoyed your good news, too. Glad to see how things are starting to "pop" for you.

Barbara Fisher said...

What a wonderful time you all had, thank you for sharing the photos.

Kate Larkindale said...

Sounds like you are having a marvelous time. Enjoy it!

Mark Noce said...

Fun pictures, looks like you had a great time! :)

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

Thanks, everyone. Although we travel to Galicia often, it's primarily a working vacation during the week and we do most activities on week-ends, but this time it feels like we've done a lot more sightseeing, etc. It certainly has been very enjoyable for sure. And in about three weeks it comes to an end. I'm trying to write about it as much as possible while we're here.

Mirka Breen said...

Thank you for sharing the lovely days you are having, and taking us along.

Elizabeth Varadan, Author said...

You're very welcome, Mirka. I'm glad you are enjoying the travels. I always like to read about others' travels, too. One place I've always wanted to go is Ireland, and I'm always so pleased when people start sharing pictures of their trips to Ireland.