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Monday, December 3, 2018

End of Year 3

Today marks the end of Year 3 of the 10 Year Plan.  Time flies.  

Our year in Washington, D.C. has been wonderful.  We have caught up with old friends, made new friends, hosted many visitors and enjoyed all the good things that D.C. has to offer.  

Sadly, we are leaving D.C. today.  Departing is bittersweet.  Tears will be shed.

We will spend some time in North Carolina and Florida visiting family and friends before the start of Year 4 at the end of January.  We are looking forward to living in Paris for a year.  We have arranged a place to live in the center of Paris, in the 1st arrondissement, not far from the Louvre museum.

In the meantime, the blog will be on hiatus, although you might see a few overdue posts now and then.  We very much appreciate your following the blog and hope that you find some of the posts intriguing or at least amusing.  

Until then, we wish everyone everywhere joy and cheer.



Sunday, December 2, 2018

Georgetown Glow #4

On our last night in D.C., we were strolling in Georgetown and spotted three more installations in the Georgetown Glow 2018 exhibition. 

Today I Love You:  


Today I Love You by Massimo Uberti & Marco Pollice.  “A sentence excelling at splendid simplicity. A magical sentence, which seems to come from a beautiful dream you don’t yet want to wake up from.  The message has been fixed in time, making it possible for the visitor to enjoy the comforting words over and over again. but it also raises the question:  You might love me today, but what about tomorrow?”

Twilight Antiques and Thrift:  Below is one of the light installations being set up. 


The finished product was very interesting.   


Twilight Antiques & Thrift “pays homage to the many small businesses in Georgetown. The artists, Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky, have created a life-scale representation of an antique and thrift store in the form of a glowing lantern. Lining the shelves of this translucent shop are 500 hand-assembled lanterns--each a reproduction of an object that relates to Washington, DC, and can actually be found in Georgetown or part of the artists' collection. Each evening a lighting program will begin with the lanterns being lit one by one, as if being stocked by a ghostly shopkeeper, until the whole store is brightly lit. Once fully lit, each lantern will turn off, slowly extinguishing the store by the end of the evening. For the final night of GLOW on January 6, visitors will be welcomed into the store and allowed to select a free lantern to take home."

Below is a close up of the some of the antiques displayed in the windows.


When Greg was a kid, he remembers playing with the item pictured below, The Visible Man.  He remembers removing organs and replacing them in different locations.  It's probably a good thing he became an attorney instead of a physician.


Prismatic:  


Prismatic, by Hou de Sousa, "is a kaleidoscope of light, color, and space that frames a myriad of perspectives. The site-specific artwork is unique on all sides, encouraging the public to explore the exterior, as well as meander through its translucent interior. Iridescent cords weave between a lightweight steel lattice, producing a dynamic visual effect known as a moiré. As visitors turn their gaze or walk about the space, patterns in the background and foreground continuously converge and delaminate, resulting in the perception that static surfaces are somehow in motion."

A close up view of Prismatic

Some random hottie
Thanks for viewing Georgetown Glow 2018 with us.  

P.S.  Also during our stroll, we passed by the Four Seasons Hotel, which had its own lighted art exhibition.  Check it out.  




Churches: Grace Episcopal Church #9

Today was our last day during Year 3 at Grace Episcopal Church in nearby Georgetown.

We discovered the church one year ago and were warmly welcomed.  Over the past year, we have made many new friends and volunteered often at Grace's Table, the weekly luncheon and bible study for our homeless neighbors.  

Today, the congregation bid us bon voyage as we depart D.C. and look ahead to Paris.  The flowers on the altar were given in our honor.  


Given "in thanksgiving for the presence of Susan and Greg Bendlin with us this past year and for their special ministry of coordinating Grace's Table".
At the coffee hour afterward, we were honored with a delicious cake complete with Eiffel Towers.  Oh la la.


Saying thanks and farewell was bittersweet and emotional.  We will miss our friends and fondly remember Grace Church.  We hope to return for a visit in the future.  Who knows, perhaps Year 11 will be spent in D.C.

P.S.  While photographing the flowers, Greg walked around behind the altar and saw something out of the ordinary.  Greg remembered that the rector, John Graham, is a fan of jazz.  The church often hosts jazz events.  The church even has its own drum kit, which is conveniently stored under the altar.  Who knew?



Panettone in D.C.

We are celebrating the season with a tradition we learned in Italy during Year 3:  eating the traditional Italian large bread filled with raisins and candied fruit known as panettone.  In the Italian language, the suffix -one signifies big.  

Recently, at our nearby Trader Joe's (Trader Giotto's), we purchased a panettone (pictured below).   


The irony is that the panettone was miniature, not large.  Check out some random hottie with her baby panettone below.  Perhaps the panettone shrunk during shipment from Italy?  Or perhaps the fine folks at Trader Joe's need some Italian language lessons?

Some random hottie holding a panettone bambino
Large or small, it was delicious.

Music in D.C.: Millennium Stage--Reba and Cher

Tonight, the Kennedy Center Honors will celebrate the artistic excellence of Cher, Reba McEntire, Philip Glass, Wayne Shorter and the musical Hamilton.

Leading up to the event, the Kennedy Center has dressed itself in the rainbow.

The Kennedy Center, illuminated with the rainbow colors (viewed from the Georgetown waterfront on a foggy night) (12/2/2018)
The Kennedy Center (viewed up close) (12/1/2018)

The Kennedy Center, Hall of States, draped with the rainbow
The colors signify the rainbow ribbons on the Kennedy Center Honors medallions.

The Kennedy Center Honors Medallion
As part of Honors Week before the event, the Kennedy Center is hosting a series of performances to pay tribute to the awardees.  Last night, we attended the Millennium Stage performance honoring awardees Reba McEntire and Cher.  The Capital Hearings, a D.C. a cappella group, performed a set of Reba's songs.

Then, Chad Michaels, the "nation's #1 Cher impersonator and RuPaul's Drag Race All Stars season one winner," performed a set of Cher's songs.  Chad's performance was spectacular.  The audience enjoyed it immensely.  You can see it by clicking here.  (Chad/Cher appears at 24:10.)

Chad Michaels or Cher?  (Kennedy-Center.org)
Seeing last night's performance was a wonderful finale to the many wonderful Millennium Stage performances during Year 3.  Thank you, Kennedy Center.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Christmas Tree Shopping in D.C.

In case you haven't already purchased a Christmas Tree, you might want to stop by the Four Seasons Hotel in Georgetown.  

Like last year, the Four Seasons is hosting a curated exhibition of bespoke trees with hefty price tags.  Not to worry because the money paid for the trees goes to a worthwhile charity, Children's National, the network of children's hospitals in the DMV.  The event, called Light Up The Season, "is a family-friendly community fundraising event featuring designer-decorated holiday trees, menorahs, mantle pieces, and wreaths. Each original piece is a unique collaboration between a Children’s National patient and a notable area designer."

We stopped by the Four Seasons to view the exhibition.  For fun, we judged which pieces we think are the best.  Please enjoy a photographic tour of the exhibition and decide for yourself which are the best..






And now for the three best pieces in the exhibition.

The second runner up is . . . . "A few of my favorite things".


What makes "favorite things" special are the ornaments decorating the tree.  A few are pictured below.


The first runner up is "Grandma got runover by a reindeer".


Below is a close up shot of poor Lego grandma being run over by Santa's Lego reindeer.  (Note Lego Rudolph's red nose.)


And the winner is . . . "Make every moment count.  Don't be a grinch."  Susan really liked this tree because it was very traditional and whimsical at the same time.  There were adorable ornaments of squirrels and other woodland creatures (including the huge white owl) on the tree.  There was also a humorous Grinch manger scene displayed inside a 1960's-era TV set right behind the tree, as described below.



One of the best features was the vintage television with a winter scene and the Grinch's hand holding a dangling tree ornament.  To see the television scene in action, click on the video below.


Thanks for viewing the exhibition with us.  If you have a favorite tree, please let us know.  We would be happy to submit a bid of several thousand dollars on your behalf.  

P.S.  While visit the Four Seasons, we spotted igloo-like structures in the inner courtyard.  They are plastic-covered geodesic domes, complete with chairs and space heaters.  Each is a perfect place to rub noses on a cold winter night in D.C.    



Friday, November 30, 2018

Museums: The Kreeger Museum #2 (Part 2 of 2)

Our return visit to the Kreeger Museum continues with more contemporary art.  

One of the lower level galleries focuses on paintings from the "Color School".








Thanks for returning to the Kreeger Museum with us.