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January 24, 2011



Sounds like you are having lots of fun on the mainland - good! Excellent point about coffee.

Enjoy the opera - we saw that one in Finland over a decade ago at the annual Opera Festival in Savonlinna's castle, with the stone walls as a backdrop - memorable!


Looking forward to having lunch with you, Terry, and Hank before the opera! See ya!


Marja-Leena: It is kind of fun, though, this cold weather ambience. Wish we had time to get up to Vancouver.
Gigi: It will be really fun to meet face to face, at last. Some of my best friends are people I've met over the Internet. My only regret is that I didn't meet them sooner, but, as they say, better late than never.

Kay Dennison

Glad you're having a great time and how I envy your time with Naomi -- she's one of my favorite blogging buddies!!!


Kay: She is so much fun in person, too! We had a wonderful time.

Barrett Bonden

That's like going to the Sahara and complaining about an excess of sand. Embrace instead indigenous benefits. Aware of California's good but over-priced white wines I was delighted by Seattle's wine lists and urged my host (the Hyster forklift company based in Portland) to give me a free hand with selection. Northwest whites proved to be not only the equal of those from the rambunctious and self-regarding state to the south, they cost less and at the time (1988) the whole oenological ethos was more modest, less blatant. Having drunk my fill and attended a Mariners' ballgame I travelled south, was charmed by the use of trees in urban Portland and even more charmed after I discovered one of the world's best classical CD shops - to the point where passing through Customs back at Heathrow proved a severe financial embarrassment.

Mind you neither city offered anything like Melton Mowbray pork pies, a structure equivalent to Tower Bridge, a poet to match Carol Anne Duffy or a Jack-the-Ripper mythology so you could say I came away disappointed and I have subsequently torn up my passport.


Barrett: The Northwest climate is right for white wines, and they get better and better. We had a pinot gris in Portland that was excellent. If I had known of your interest I would have noted the name of the winery. And yes, Portland has an abundance of trees, remarkable in an urban area. The catch, for me, is that I got awful allergies in the spring, one of the factors which eventually caused me to move away after living there for ten years.
But if you want grim and gruesome, the Northwest can equal anything you can come up with in your part of the world, I assure you. You've got them beat on the poets, for sure. No pork pies, I've got to admit.


I just heard of this book, which you might be interested in:



Brandon. Thanks. I'm not a true big opera fan. Faust should be a trip, however.

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