Friday, January 20, 2006

3 Years

Wew, time to slow down and catch my breath here. These past few days were so busy, I had no time to even read a book (Lesly Downer's plain but informative "Women of the Pleasure Quarter: the Secret History of the Geisha"). Instead, Chris and I have been busy celebrating our third wedding anniversary.

Ok, so it's not a very big celebration. So what?! Look at it this way - considering that so many marriages fall apart every year, every successful year must be cherished and celebrated as if it was a major milestone. More than that, statistically, marriages are most susceptible to divorce within the first 5 years. So every year lived together is worth celebrating. And every year lived together well is worth almost having a parade and some fireworks. But we didn't want to have any of that stuff because we are laid-back and modest and don't like stressing people up by forcing them to wear costumes and hold baloons and march in parades. So instead we quietly celebrated by ourselves.

This year we decided to skip the whole gift-giving part. After all, Christmas and New Year's gift-hunting frenzy is still fresh in our minds. Instead, we chose an extended celebration over 3 days. Luckily, the circus was in town and they provided all the needed oompa and fireworks. So first we went to Barnum and Bailey's on Tuesday night. The show was at the Ocean Center, here in Daytona. This place is usually a dump, hosting stuff like Cheerleaders Competitions, proms for local highschools, and senior expos. But once in a while they have note-worthy events such as rodeos, motorcycles shows, ice-skating championships, and circus. Incidentally, this was a pretty good show with acrobats, a contortionist man, a juggler, flying trapeze people, an elephant, horses, alligators, 13-foot pythons, and sadly, with clowns (I really don't like clowns. The only thing that I like less than clowns in a circus is tamed bears).

On Wednesday night we went to the Melting Pot in Orlando. It's a fondue restaurant. It's really nice and low key. They don't serve a lot of food, but somehow you end up completely stuffed. And we even ordered chocolate fondue for dessert. So when our waiter asked if we needed anything else at the end of the evening, I requested a little cart to cart me out of there. But we could not possibly skip the dark chocolate Amaretto fondue flambeed tableside (that means a waiter sets fire to the liquor and tries not to trigger the fire alarms). Dipping a double-chocolate brownie into gooey yummy melted dark chocolate - try to beat this, all you Atkins dieters. Oh, and if you tell them that you're celebrating a special event, they will even snap your picture and put it in a little paper "Melting Pot" frame for you - for free. So if you're in one of those Melting Pots (it's a chain), just tell them you're celebrating something or other (they never check facts, kind of like newspapers). Oh, and their pictures are really good too; they must be using some sort of high-speed prettifying technology. I always look very cute on their pictures (and you know that in real life I have my homely moments and lots of them).

Oh, and yesterday we rounded the celebration up by going to a classical music concert at a Peabody Auditorium here, in Daytona Beach. They had Sofia symphony orchestra & chorus performing "Carmina Burana" and there was also Bulgarian ballet "Arabesk" performing along. And then they had the ballet performance of Ravel's Bolero. [Wikipedia has tons of interesting facts about Bolero, but do you know that some speculate that it's famous form was borne out of an onset of Alzheimer's decease?] Both are very famous works and are perfect for all sorts of celebrations of romantic events. Most of the crowd was way past their sexual prime (you know, it's Daytona Beach), but even these septa- and octagenarians appreciated the sexual energy of the dance. I just hope they forgot all about it by the time they got home (or else, old folks getting it on "Cocoon"-style - pretty disgusting!)

Oh, and then the opening chorus of "Carmina Burana", O Fortuna, just sends shivers down your spine! It's a bit depressive and dark, but hey, what follows is a lively romp through some hills and some dales and an occasional tavern or two and on to making out and such in the "Court of Love" part. Seriously though, it was a beautiful concert.

"O Fortune, like the moon of ever changing state, you are always waxing or waning; hateful life now is brutal, now pampers our feelings with its game; poverty, power, it melts them like ice.

Fate, savage and empty, you are a turning wheel, your position is uncertain, your favour is idle and always likely to disappear; covered in shadows and veiled you bear upon me too; now my back is naked through the sport of your wickedness.

The chance of prosperity and of virtue is not now mine; whether willing or not, a man is always liable for Fortune's service. At this hour without delay touch the strings! Because through luck she lays low the brave, all join with me in lamentation!"