Member preview

Detail from paintings in Van Gogh and the Avant-Garde: The Modern Landscape:

— “Roadway with Underpass, Asnières“ by Vincent Van Gogh (1887)
— “The Fortification of Paris with Houses” Vincent Van Gogh (1887)
— “The Restaurant Rispal at Asnières” by Vincent Van Gogh (1887)
— “Railway Junction near Bois-Colombes” by Paul Signac (1885-86)
— “Strolling Man next to Tree on a Bank (Study for ‘La Grande Jatte’)” by Georges Seurat (about 1894)

Out and about

Scenes from two recent walks and Sunday’s ride.
(Dandelions are under-appreciated.)

Alas, my sturdy minivan of a bike is in the shop. On Sunday, the twist gear shift was stiff and then immovable. Before the apocalypse begins in earnest, we should probably learn more bike maintenance than changing tires and adjusting brakes, but for now, the kind, capable technicians at the local bike shop will work their magic.

And I will keep walking until my bike is repaired.  


My birthday usually brings a number of new books to my house;
I think one or two more boxes are due.

Today after our walk to the lake, we readied the bikes for the first ride of the season — maybe tomorrow? Apart from that, my day comprised the remaining weekly chores, a terrific meal, and reading.

It’s late, but I’m about to begin a short practice session with a focus on my current étude, the allegro on page 13 of Robert Cavally’s Melodious and Progressive Studies from Andersen, Gariboldi, Koehler, and Terschak for Flute, Book 2. Since January, I’ve worked on a number of short solo pieces by French composers, including the delightful “March of the Jolly Fellows” (Henri Gagnebin). I “retreated” to (somewhat) less challenging solo selections because this semester’s duet work was demanding, as were the selections for band. But my teacher has announced that after Fauré’s “Après un rêve” and Debussy’s “Arabesque No. 1,” I will begin preparing a (*gulp*) concerto. Tonight it’s the Fauré, though, and continuing work on the Mozart duet.


In the readerly restlessness that has followed the conclusion of Don Quixote, I finished All the Beauty in the World: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Me (Patrick Bringley; 2023) and Project Hail Mary (Andrew Weir; 2021). While visiting my daughters last week, I started reading Lessons in Chemistry (Bonnie Garmus; 2022), but I haven’t touched it since returning home. Nothing is “sticking” right now, which is fine. The weather has finally turned, so garden and yard work await me; I’ve already mowed and trimmed several times. May and September are generally the months I schedule healthcare appointments. And the spring semester is concluding, so I’m finishing up some pieces in my music lessons and choosing projects for the summer months, as well as preparing to play two graduation concerts with the community band.

While walking, I have been listening to the bird chorus and Cervantes’ Don Quixote, a Open Yale Courses program comprising twenty-four lectures delivered by Professor Roberto González Echevarría.