I joined Mark at the Operahouse this morning, where Tra was recording again. I sat, sketchbook in hand and enjoyed the opportunity of making my own record of the event and found it interesting to be a passive observer.
We'd speculated on the life of a professional musician more than once, noting how carefully members of the orchestra warmed up, taking as much care of themselves as their instrument. I was particularly impressed by the chairs they were using, each infinitely adjustable for back support. No H&S quibbles here - except, did anyone adjust their chair? Not whilst I was there! (Let's assume they all did that yesterday and ensured that they used the very same chair today, shall we?)
I left Mark, Tra and the orchestra at lunchtime, originally intending to have another go at seeing the Open Source Embroidery exhibition, but having discovered the website held incorrect information, will leave that till tomorrow. Instead, I took advantage of the first fine (ish) weather and explored the city a little. By the river, a man was using a chainsaw to sculpt a pair of tree stumps - one was finished and he was a good way into the second.
But I have to say, I prefer the tree in its natural state. What do you think?
The other activity taking place all over the city was the planting out of summer bedding. The growing season is so short here, one would think that it's hardly worth the effort. Not so. There are colourful annuals in abundance and those outside the tourist office in the national colours were especially pretty.
With Tra's part in the recording finished, we have a free day tomorrow and called in to get some advice about "must sees" in the area. After some close questioning, we came away with several brochures, more maps and a sketchy plan: first to the Umedalen Sculpture Park, then along the Konstvagen to Bjurholm and the Algens Hus. My plan is to get back to Umea in time to visit that embroidery exhibition!
It's now 10.30pm here and we are still amazed by the effect of the long daylight hours. Looking out of our window on the 13th floor, we can see (and hear!) a crowd enjoying some live music on a floating restaurant, people walking, jogging and returning from a boat trip downriver. A couple of chaps wearing high-vis jackets have just corralled a bunch of cross country runners for the start of a race and some of the spectators are pushing buggies with young children. In a real-world version of one of those Richrd Scarry "Busy World" pictures, there's a train crossing the bridge, a plane taking off from the airport and cars moving through the town.
No wonder nothing happens till lunchtime!