Man of La Mancha is put to bed. I’ll miss this one. We became such a tight knit company who so enjoyed working with each other that we could have done the show for a few more months without getting bored. After the closing matinee yesterday, I had the gang over to my house for a cast party. Tommy was the one who knew how to throw a party. His ability to conjure up food for a hundred on an impeccable tablescape was legendary and I was somewhat afraid that people would be disappointed with what I’m capable of doing on my own as they compared it to some of our more infamous cast parties of yore. But everyone seemed to have a good time with a hard core group staying late for a raucous game of Cards Against Humanity. It cut my beauty sleep but I was glad to sacrifice a few hours for fellowship and deep laughter with people with whom I love to spend time. There were comments about the need for a regular game night going forward, I’m up for it if the rest of the gang is. It didn’t take anywhere near as long to get things ready as I had thought and my restoration of the house tonight was not as painful as I had feared.
The score for my next project, HMS Pinafore, arrived today so the proverbial window has opened where the door has closed. I’ve loved Gilbert and Sullivan my whole life but this will be my first chance to actually perform in one. I’m going to take a few days to unwind and try to get all my loose ends caught up from the past few weeks before I dive into it. Rehearsals don’t begin until the end of the month. I’ve also been sent a script for something that’s going up late summer to look over so there may be something to look forward to after I return from Europe. More about that one later if it comes to fruition.
Next week, I was due to go to Savannah for a long weekend. I do some expert witness work in geriatric issues and I was called to testify in a trial taking place there. I got word today that the case has settled on the courthouse steps. So, I have to decide what to do. I have a booked and paid for hotel room in Savannah should I still decide to go. Or, should I take the time and go someplace else? Or, should I stay here and do home projects on staycation? Complicating things are auditions for Cabaret that Saturday. I played Herr Schultz at the Virginia Samford Theater in 2007 – I was a good twenty years too young for the role, but had a blast and got good reviews. I’d like to revisit him now that I’m only about five years too young. Do I stick around and do an in person audition? Do I submit a video audition? Do I let someone else have a crack at the role? Decisions decisions. I’m going to sleep on it and maybe I’ll know what to do tomorrow.
Tommy’s birthday is Wednesday. He would have been 54. I’m not sure what I’m feeling about that. Last year on his birthday, he was tethered to his bed in the CCU. The only thing he asked for was carrot cake from Continental Bakery in Mountain Brook which I dutifully went and got him even if it wasn’t on his diet. Maybe I’ll go get carrot cake for myself on Wednesday in his honor. Maybe that should be a new tradition. April 10th. National Carrot Cake Day. I should go out and visit his grave but Parrish, where he’s in the Thompson family plot, is a distance from town so that may have to wait until the weekend.
I should probably tell a Tommy story in honor of his birthday. Tommy hated all Hallmark occasions and didn’t like cards or gifts or any of that. (He made a small exception for Christmas – not the gifts etc, but the gathering together of friends and family and the decorations and the food). The first few years we were together, I always got him a birthday card and a small token of some sort and he would lecture me about how we’ve all been brainwashed by corporate America into gift giving. I learned how to get around it. I’d leave his birthday card somewhere in the morning where he would find it early in the day so by the time we got together after work, he would have gotten rid of his self righteous impulses. Then I would take him to dinner and a movie and all was right with the world. Even though he hated his own birthday, he loved planning birthday parties. He was all about people coming together and enjoying each other’s company. My birthday rolled around when we were first dating and he organized a party for me at our church. He put me up on a platform and played the piano and sang two songs to me. These Foolish Things and Someone to Watch Over Me. The second one is the song that I feel is our song. He sang it to me once again on his senior recital when he got his music degree. The church is naming the music classroom for him and dedicating it this next Sunday. The plaque refers to him watching over us.
I think I have to have a quiet cry now.