"Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset." Saint Francis De Sales

Friday, June 24, 2011

My Slow Takes (vol. 3)

1. Last Saturday evening we attended a performance by "The Champion Greater Richmond Chorus." This was my first encounter with a woman's harmonizing chorus. They were terrific.

In addition to their chorus group they have five four-women quartets that perform. Each one specializing in a different type of harmony. They also have a community outreach group, the "Extension Chords." This group of ladies perform for senior citizens, schools, churches and other community functions throughout the Richmond area. Check out their website at grcsings.com.

2. I was blessed on Father's Day to have all three of our sons spend time with us. We started at Panera's with brunch being handled by our youngest son Stephen. My mother-in-law came over and got into the cooking and preparation for our evening meal. She is a joy to be with and we all love her. The oldest son Eric came over after brunch with his sons and the puppy, Logan. We had Stephens three girls with us, so they all enjoyed running around playing a variety of different games. I call this "controlled chaos, and love it. 

Later in the afternoon the middle son, Todd came in joined by Stephen and his wife. I grilled chicken kabobs and some small steaks for dinner and invited two special friends Pam and Tony to join us.

After Eric and Stephen left with their family, we listened and sang to Italian music that Tony brought. It was a full day of sharing, laughing and enjoying.

3. The "Song of Roland" is a 12th century French poem about the legendary hero Roland. He was a knight of Charlemagne's court and also his nephew. My middle name is Roland, named after one of my uncles. I love stories of knights and deeds of valor. So this poem became one I read when I was younger. This week the memory of the poem came back to me. 

The climax of the poem is a classic battle fought between the French Christians and the Saracens from the city Saragossa in Spain. An ambush, for the French rear guard, was set at the pass of Roncevaux. Commanding the rear guard was Roland. He was joined by his best friend Oliver and a warrior clergyman named Archbishop Turpin. The Saracens, numbering four hundred thousand, charge into the small French force of twenty thousand. Many heroic knights, both French and Saracens, are killed in valiant chivalrous combat. In the end the French are defeated but Roland manages to blow "three long mighty blasts on his oilphat," which Charlemagne and the main French army hear. Roland then turns and facing his enemy dies a heroic death. Saint Gabriel and Saint Michael arrive to escort him to heaven. Charlemagne returns and defeats the Saracens.

An "oilphant" is a wind instrument made from the tusk of an elephant.

4. I just discovered that the "time zone" for my blog was set at Pacific time. Since I live in Virginia it made sense that an adjustment should be made. So now I am on Eastern time. My apologies if I confused anyone.

5. Today, June 24th is Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day in Quebec, Canada. For those of us with French Canadian ancestry, Pope Pius X designated St. John the Baptist as our patron saint in the year 1908. 

6. Saint Francis De Sales has a beautiful daily prayer that I say every morning. "My God, I give you this day. I offer you, now, all of the good that I shall do and promise to accept, for love of you, all of the difficulty that I shall meet. Help me to conduct myself during this day in a manner pleasing to you. Amen."

No comments:

Post a Comment