Sunday, January 3, 2010

Muni String Quartet


Terry and I met for dinner one evening in Winter Park. As we ate dinner the sun set and the street lights came on. We ate in an outdoor patio area with a view of the New England Avenue. This city block was recently gentrified in the last several years. All of the store fronts are brand new. The street was blocked off by police. Walking from Terry's car, a man asked me why the street was blocked off and I had to reply that I honestly didn't know. Art galleries and stores were open late. Terry saw a bull dog inside a clothing store and she went inside. The store owner was just outside the front door talking to a friend. Though Terry lavished attention on the dog, he never once looked away from his owner. He quietly stood vigil. The owner explained that every first Monday this street would be shut down to traffic so people could stroll through the stores shopping for the holidays.

Outside a violin store this quartet began to play Beetles songs and holiday music. Terry left me with the quartet to sketch while she shopped. There were many folding chairs set up in the street but besides myself there were only maybe four other people seated. Only in Florida could you get to see a quartet playing outside the warm glow of a music store without jackets on. When they finished I started walking back to my truck. Terry had already decided to go home. I heard music coming from Central Park so I changed course and went to investigate. An old Doris Day film was being screened in the park. Young couples cuddled for warmth under blankets. I considered trying to finish a second sketch, but I was tired and who knew how soon the film might end. What a gorgeous night, full of surprises.


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