Wednesday 15 February

The weather picked up during the week so on Monday and Wednesday afternoon I was able to visit the beach.

I also had to play for an evening Mass with students from Tampa Catholic High. They had chosen the music and I was prepared to play but the cantor who turned up knew nothing except the psalm. Eventually I found two further singers and between us we managed to get through it all. What had started by being an hour’s MASS developed into a rehearsalm Mass and presentations! I must charge then more next year!

I was able to spend Friday 10th at the beach after a fairly exhausting week at work. It was great to do nothing for a change.

On Saturday 11 Feb I was in early to prepare for the choir rehearsal and subsequent confirmations of 93 of our youngsters by the Abbot of St Leo. It was a wonderful occasion in which the Abbot really engaged with the youngsters. Musically I was pleased as most of the choir were there and sang so well.

Immediately after the confirmations there was a funeral and then the Vigil Mass. Sunday was as usual but I was very tired after the efforts the previous day. The cantor for the evening Mass asked me when we could rehearse again for the wedding the following weekend and I had to reply “How about 5.30pm today?”. She seemed puzzled as it was already 8pm but I added “That was the time we were supposed to have rehearsed!”

Monday was a free day so I started with an appointment to renew my drivers’ licence which would expire on 18 March. Unfortunately it was not possible because my visa was due to expire in a few weeks. My Green Card application had been in since September 2016 and there was a long backlog in getting to the applications. I was pleased with the advice to return on 17 March when they might issue a 60-day temporary licence. This was better than having to use a taxi!

I then returned to collect some paperwork as I intended to have a day doing medical things. First stop was my dentist where I was delighted to discover that he is now ‘in-network’ with my new health insurance. Thence I went to a dental surgeon and eventually established the same. I had already had to cancel two surgeon appointments because they were not in-network. If I waited a couple of hours they would meet with me and schedule surgery. As chance would have it a cancellation appeared on Thursday and since the extraction of 4 wisdom teeth was something of an emergency now I agreed to it.

Next stop was the optician to order some specs. I had got the prescription 10 days ago so was able to place the order and celebrate a successful day back at Charann’s.

On Tuesday I went in for a long day at work which finished at 7pm. During the day I realised that recuperation after the surgery can be both painful and lengthy so I set about finding a cover musician for the weekend and for a wedding. My first choice was available and popped round to the office to be briefed.

School mass on Wednesday went well with my student cantors doing a great job. After the Mass I was able to sort a few things including a date for the installation of a new amplifier and surge protectors for the organ. They would come on Thursday 23 soon after the piano tuner! It is Wednesday afternoon and as I type the power keeps going off as a storm hits us but it is not expected to be long-lasting or destructive.

In the evening I would meet with staff to consider what more needed to be in place for the forthcoming organ concert on 8 March by my teacher, Stephen Hicks. Following this I had choir practice. It would be a tough one as I needed to make sure that everything was in place in the event of me being absent after the surgery tomorrow.

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