Saturday my wife and I went on the Spring Garden Tour offered by the Allen Garden Club. We visited six homes and a good handful of churches and schools. Our favorite garden was the one we are most familiar with--an exuberant display of color which annually graces our catty-corner neighbor's yard. We also liked the local yard in which the
owner had grapes on the overhad vines, fig and plum trees, and a foliage sense of her native British Columbia, which is not an easy sense to create in north Texas. We enjoyed the historical St. Mary's Baptist Church, Allen's first African-American church, whose building is now being preserved for history, and whose garden is now being tended for contemporary vitality. I love old oblong churches with wooden pews, vintage organs and the hymns written in the letterboard on the wall. We had lunch at a newish cafe in Allen we had not tried, but will, I suspect, visit often.
We met our friends Scott and Donna for dinner at the Nasher Sculpture Center in downtown Dallas for the center's regular "Saturday at the Nasher" event. We purchased dining tickets, which qualified us for a buffet dinner of roast pork, salads uncounted, and penne with sun-dried tomato, not to mention a rather incongruously haute pan of macaroni and cheese. We dined outside, overlooking the charming small sculpture garden. Then we walked through the garden and the indoors exhibition.
I liked the Boleslaw Biegas, "The Tragedy of Life", as well as Max Ernst's "The King Playing with the Queen" and Joan Miro's "Moonbird". A loud jazz band played downstairs, which turned out, when we passed through downtstairs, to be a conga player, a keyboardist, and a man with a turntable/synth array, who played various flute and other woodwind samples.
We then drove to Standard and Pour's coffeeshop, in hopes of taking in some folk music, but the crowd there sprawled across the tables and seating arrangements rather inefficiently (and appropriately for a folk club), and we did not feel, absent help from the staff, as though sorting out the array while people were listening to songs made much sense. We headed next door to Absinthe Lounge where, rather than wormwood-laced drinks, we were offered a comfortable sofa and chairs, excellent service, and a lawyer/DJ called DJ Three C, who unobtrusively spun a pleasant mix of chill, Eurobeats and intelligent dance music. We enjoyed the chance to have quiet conversation over moderately volumed sound, until two smoking patrons crossed Donna's smoke threshold, serving as an aromatic wake-up call that our city evening must end. We passed by the security guard on the big-wheel bicycle, filing past one of the folk singers, with whom a woman was vaguely flirting through the intense aphrodisiac of intensely cooing over his toddler. The groupie business works differently, I suspect, than I have read in books.
We bid Scott and Donna adieu, and headed back to Allen. This morning I figured out how to use Windows Movie Maker and went to Towne Lake Park in McKinney for a morning of walking and creation of video samples for remixing into a simple film.