Joy in June



Friday night was date night, dinner and a show. Anne looked especially lovely. She wore a sheer full length silk dress with matching shawl and high heels. She was going to wear this outfit last year at our 40th high school reunion, but the weather didn’t cooperate then, so she had to wear another outfit. Not that the weather really cooperated last night, but at least it was warmer than during last year’s reunion. Dinner was at Cyrano’s, home of extra whip cream. The show was Opera Theater’s Pirates of Penzance, in the Loretto-Hilton, at Webster.

We’ve seen this Gilbert and Sullivan light opera many times in the past, but never seem to grow tired of it. In between dinner and the show Opera Theater offered a lecture on Pirates. We showed up late to it, but still found it very interesting. I was well aware of the satirical references to then contemporary British politics and culture in Gilbert and Sullivan’s dialog and lyrics, but this lecture revealed to me a whole new level of satire within their operettas. The women lecturer sitting at a grand piano, on stage, in Webster’s music hall, explained that not only was the book dripping with satire, but so was their music. She went line for line and compared portions of the music of Pirates with portions of Verdi, Puccini and other contemporary composers.

The bad weather that had hit Oklahoma earlier on Friday had been churning and turning its way across Missouri. I had been keeping a weather eye open on it all afternoon. The bad weather held off through dinner, the lecture and the beginning of the show. During the first act, while the female chorus was singing about the weather, How Beautifully Blue the Sky, the front hit. Other parts of Saint Louis were hit that night, but not Webster. The show went on, intermission and then the second act. We both thoroughly enjoyed the operetta. Afterwards, I fetched the Prius from its bunker and picked Anne up at the theater’s front door. We drove home in a driving rain. It stormed the whole night through.

How Beautifully Blue the sky
The glass is rising very high
Continue fine I hope it may
And yet it rained but yesterday
Tomorrow it may pour again
I hear the country wants some rain
Yet people say
I know not why
That we shall have a warm July
How Beautifully Blue the Sky,
Pirates of Penzance

Saturday morning, there was no sign of storm damage at home. The sump pump ran off and on all night, but couldn’t prevent some basement flooding. By noon, the rain had ended and we went for a wee bit of a bike ride. We ended up at the Midtown Taste and Art Fair. This is the third year that this fair has been held and while it is certainly the most expansive of the three, it still has a way to go towards sustainability. At one time this midtown neighborhood was the auto mall of its day for Saint Louis. Many of the buildings on Locust were once auto dealerships. The Moto Museum is on this street. We were peering in through the front window of one of these former auto dealerships, when we were invited in. The building had once been a Velie dealership, a franchise of John Deere. Atomicdust is the current proprietor. They are a 21st-century marketing and design firm serving their corporate clients. I love what they did with the space.

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