Friday 4 December

It was a full-on return to work day on Tuesday 24 November. This week included two days off in respect of Thanksgiving so I was determined to get as much done on the Tuesday so that I did not have to work too much at other times.

In addition to pulling together the final plans for Advent Sundays and for Thanksgiving I also had choir practice that evening.

Since we were approaching the start of a new liturgical year I asked a priest to join us to bless the choir. Then we went through the music I’d chosen which was not easy. I was glad when the day came to a close.

On the Wednesday  I relaxed at the beach for much of the day before meeting my friends Mike & Helen who were over from Spain to try out Florida. We did the reuired visit to Goodwill and then ate at Margaritas Restaurant and finished with a few beers at Cigar City Brewery. I then left them to play for the Thankgiving Day Vigil Mass.

On Thursday I was up early to play for the 8.30am Thanksgiving Mass. The rest of the day was my own. I’d been invited to join some of my choir for a celebration meal and sensing alcohol I decided to leave the car at home. My plan was to have a few in the bar across the road then get an uber taxi to the meal. I was thwarted at first base. The bar was closed. I decided to walk for an hour and then got a taxi. The walk enabled me to appreciate where I lived at a much slower pace and to chat to a few fellow walkers.

I got to the meal on time and it was excellent. great food and real relaxation. I got a lift home which was just as well because my host had insisted on sharing the leftovers with me. These provided meals for the next two days!

On Friday I took the kayak to Fort Desoto and had a great day out, returning to Charann’s tavern for the evening.

I spent much of Saturday in the office doing further admin. In the evening it was the vigil Masses and the usual sequence of weekend responsibilities. The great change was that I invited a young man to serve as Cantor. I had heard him sing before but he was often tied up with altar serving. He responded positively and ended up singing for the two vigil Masses and the first two Masses on the Sunday morning!

At 5pm I joined another of my singers at a funeral home where we had been engaged to provide music for a memorial celebration. Then I had to rush back for the evening Mass.

Monday began with a visit to the dentist to have the final stage of my implant completed. The whole process had taken eleven months but now it was over and the results are excellent.

On Tuesday I was back at work.  In addition to the usual planning and production of practice recordings and instrumental parts for the weekend Masses I had also decided to visit the local music store to purchase some microphones and related equipment. I had worked out what I needed and entered the store with a list. It should have been easy but over 2 hours later I left with very little achieved. I returned later in the afternoon with a cheque for the equipment and was able to collect what they had in store. Even this took me over an hour!

Wednesday began with a school Mass and continued with more admin. At 5pm we had our annual Advent Gathering. I had not been invited into the preparation at all and there was almost an air of secrecy about the whole thing so it was with some anticipation that I entered the hall. We started with a meal and then moved to the church for a most disappointing presentation by a visiting speaker. I had choir practice that evening so I could not assess whether their evening continued in the same way. My evening with the choir was fantastic. we were transferred to a different venue but folk all found their place and worked really hard.

On Thursday I had planned to go in for only a few hours. In the event I decided to awake when my body told me and my body insisted on a rest. I had also decided to remove my keyboard from my apartment where it was hardly used and to take it into work. It was so heavy that I could not shift it myself so I secured the assistance of some gardeners! Once in work I was able to find colleagues to assist further.

Work was cracking on with the creation of a rehearsal space out of some offices to the rear of the church. It struck me that we needed to move an old upright piano from this space before the flooring was fitted. I telephoned a piano dealer and persuaded him to let me borrow his piano dolly (that’s what they call them here!). Armed with the dolly (trolley) and two colleagues we shifted the piano over to the Higgins Hall with great ease. This completed I was able to go home early.

Friday was an overcast day so having awoken early I produced an article on the Year of Marcy for a liturgical journal, did quite a bit of housework and some essential shopping. I didn’t even join friends in the bar so here I am now approaching 8pm with my laptop open preparing this blog.

Perhaps I’ve earned a drink now!

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