Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Night At The Opera

Mrs. B at Mattison's City Grille 10.28.11

Last night was our first experience at Sarasota's Opera House. What a charming venue! It seats about 1,200 so it's not at all huge but large enough to garner a good crowd. We heard there were recent renovations/upgrades to the tune of several million dollars. Mr. B commented that it felt like Italy inside (he's never been to Italy, but, he's heard me talk about it enough that I guess he could hazard an opinion!) Well, he was right, it did have a look of Italia.

Anyway, let me take a step back and say yesterday-day was HECTIC, as in, I felt frazzled all day. This due primarily to the fact we were woken up before 6:30 am by Lucy. She kept jumping off the bed plus she was panting like wild. I figured something wasn't right; so, we got up to take her out for her morning walk. She must have squatted fifteen times on the walk, definitely not normal Lucy behavior. Thankfully, we'd already selected a vet (our vet in Durham, Uncle Chuck, strongly advised us to do this BEFORE we had an emergency; great advice!) so we had a place to take her. We were still somewhat undecided, though, until I discovered a little puddle of red-tinged pee in the utility room. So, off to the vet went our Goose while I went to have my hair done (BTW, I like the stylist I went to much better than the one I saw a few months ago).

As many of you who follow this Blog know, we've had our share of health problems with Lucy. So, anytime she goes to the vet usually translates to beaucoup d'argent being spent; not to mention, totally frayed nerves. Her new vet, Dr. B, confirmed that she had a bladder infection but since there were crystals in her urine, he wanted to do an x-ray of her bladder just to make sure there wasn't "something else going on". I fretted and fretted and prayed and prayed. Thankfully, she's ok; it was just an infection. When we picked her up, we got to meet and talk a bit with Dr. B, who told us what a great dog Lucy is (and in really, really good shape). Lucy's already made friends with the staff there, which is nice since she'll be returning in a few weeks to board. Oh, and we got out of there spending far less than we usually do :-) Would have been pretty cheap all in all if there hadn't have been x-rays.

Ok, so, after we got Lucy home (at 4;30!) we dashed about getting ready for our evening out. Mr. B couldn't find his tux accessories (note to self; find them before our cruise in December) but turns out he didn't really need to wear a tux; I only saw a few men in them at the opera. We made it to downtown Sarasota (which takes about 20 minutes if we hit the lights right) in more than enough time for our 6:00 RSVP at Mattison's City Grille. I picked this place primarily because it was within walking distance of the opera house. I had no idea the entire restaurant was OUTSIDE! Thankfully, the rain had turned into a drizzle and there wasn't enough wind to drive the drizzle anywhere near our table. We enjoyed a nice enough meal, but, I have to say, so far, we've not yet found a restaurant whose food blows our socks off. We'll have to keep trying, I guess!

We met our neighbors Stan and Alma in the lobby of the opera house at 7:30. They invited us up to the "muckity muck" lounge on the 3rd floor for a glass of Champagne. We ended up going up there with them at both intermissions as well; this was a great opportunity for Mr. B to meet some of the other opera guild members and start that whole networking thing :-)

The opera itself was very nicely done. Our seats were superb; didn't even need the binocs I'd brought along. Who can argue that "Madama Butterfly" isn't just one of THE best operas, ever? This was the 3rd time I'd seen it and I couldn't have picked a better opera for Mr. B to see for his inaugural. I'm really glad we went to the lecture Monday night; it added quite a bit to the experience having learned a few things or two that I didn't know. Time seemed to fly by; the opera was over before we knew it.

We ran into Stan and Alma on the way out and they invited us to go somewhere for an apres opera nightcap. So, off we went to a very loud Irish pub (about the only place within walking distance that was still open). Over Irish drinks and beer, we chatted about the performance, the guild, our neighborhood, and the possibility of us co-hosting a cocktail/dessert party sometime in December. After living in a neighborhood where we did nothing but wave and nod at our fellow neighbors, it's really a delight to make some friends in our new neighborhood.

Now it is Saturday; Mr. B's off at his favorite place (Lowes) and I'm doing laundry. We hear there's been snow in the East (and in Colorado!); here, it is quite balmy and the sun is starting to come out after a drizzly/dreary start to the day. Lucy's on day two of her antibiotics and seems to be doing fine. All the animals are sacked out; it's 1:15, so that means nap time for the pets in the house of B. Since we were out until 1:00 am, a nap is sounding pretty good to me, too!

Mrs. B

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