11  I am feeling slightly overwhelmed. It’s the lack of empty spaces on my calendar.

Yesterday I was feeling a bit stuck on the current state history book, and I went out for a walk.

I should have been to the gym before that, but I have such a lot of work to do right now that I hadn’t gotten around to it.

The walk was a better choice. We have a bit of color starting.

I got back to my computer with A Plan for the subunit I was working on.

11 It was scuffling through the leaves that did it.

Having done that, I actually quit after a mere 10 hours of work and made my family a proper dinner.

Then we had the first rehearsal for Messiah.  We’ve sung through bits of it before while working on the November concert pieces, but now, with the November concert behind us, we are settling in.

One of the tenors told me that people said, “With all that you’re doing, you’re singing too?” The response: “If I weren’t singing, I couldn’t do all the other things.” That’s probably true.

11 It was a good rehearsal, in any case. The director started with, “Well, we did it!”, referring of course to last Friday’s concert.

He gave us the final rehearsal schedule for Messiah, which I have now transferred to my calendar, where it overlaps with some other things, leaving a grand total of four days in this month without an evening commitment. Exactly one day actually at home without work or any appointments of any kind, and I am of course planning to schedule a show there if I can.

Maybe not.

Anyway, that calendar excess scarcely had time to sink in before we got started with the music.11

Are you familiar with Handel’s Messiah?

There are lots of notes in it.

Our director is having us do it in the more modern, which is to say, the older style. He kept showing us what a violin would do in a Baroque piece, and explaining how that should affect our production of the music.

He explained to us how new research (and he is saying “new” meaning over the past decade) has clarified and changed our ideas of how to sing this piece.

Messiah-autograph-4Fortunately, the last time I sang this, it was in the new old-fashioned way.

I remember on that occasion there were people who had sung the whole thing in double forte all their lives, with legato phrasing, who just couldn’t give that up.

 I understand that, but I like it better as we sing it nowadays.

I am not doing any arias — we are bringing in paid soloists for that — but just the choruses, so it should be pure fun. Not that I have every single chorus completely memorized, and not that HallelujahChorus it is actually easy to fit all those notes into the time available, but that is a comfortable challenge, and we are all in it together.

Following the rehearsal, I came home and worked a bit more. I talked with my kids and my husband, who has gotten a couple of bottle of Amazing Microwater and is waiting to be miraculously healed of all his ills.

I suggested filling my car’s radiator with it, but he didn’t think that was funny. I did.

Now I am going to work some more.

I will be up at the store today, and then I have class tonight. I am determined to get to the gym today.

I am expecting 14 for Thanksgiving dinner, so there will have to be housework fitted in somewhere. I had better put it on my calendar.