Saturday, July 25, 2009

July 25 - From Sierra to Sea Air - Ah!

Like the waters of the Central Valley (whether found amongst the strange pods of vegetation in the Yolo Bypass or

the Sacramento River,

the day starts in the mountains and ends near the ocean, first stop at Bootlegger's Old Town Tavern in Auburn (seen from the never-before-visited upper overflow parking lot,

(below which, as with Celia's San Rafael two days ago, Tio Pepe's looks a bit full today) for clam chowder and Negra Modelo on a white-linened wine=glassed patio while grading Music History Papers, then up

Foresthill Road past Driver's Flat (two glossed-over walks in this vicinity still in the offing) and

down-and-up-and-down Mosquito Ridge Road, for a stroll from Division Dam intersection (above is the second shuttle parking spot beyond),

over the Duncan Canyon Bridge,

and up Red Star Ridge with views back north to Little Bald Mountain (only somewhat of an identification).

Looking ahead from Red Star Pass

are French Meadows Reservoir (with cumulo-nimbus building up beyond),

the forest-fire-ravaged-recovering Middle Fork of the American River Canyon, and

Duncan Peak Overlook on

Little Bald (which looks like it's been subjected to a just-a-little-off-the-top pyrotechnic buzz cut as well).

Time to make a Sacramento Beeline back towards the Coast, beyond bridges (including Circle, over the North Fork of the Middle Fork American River and

Foresthill, re NFAM),

taverns, and


Picking up Harriet, we head parallel to fog (one of these not atypical summer days when California is embraced east [potential thunderstorms in Nevada] and west [the marine layer] by clouds, yet remains mostly in the heart-breakingly clear blue),

San Francisco Bay

the sun,

and dinosaurian / Imperial Walker cranes,

to an Edward Hopper evening,

at Tom Dean's Oakland Opera Theater for G.F. Handel's Agrippina, in a staging and partially lyrical update (Nero's arias in G. [another one!] W. Bushese) as follows:

Nero / G.W.B.
Agrippina / Barbara Bush
Claudius / George H.W. Bush
Otho / Bill Clinton
Poppea / Monica Lowinsky
Pallas / Dick Cheney
Narcissus / Donald Rumsfeld

with an all-star cast of singers, instrumentalists, and crew, including Jennifer Ashworth as Poppea / Monica (our June years ago for the Henry Miller in Brooklyn Fresh Voices shows), keyboardist Skye Atman (one of the electric harpsichordists for Dioclesian / Diocletian), and Kristin Brown (angel, etc., in Sex and Delilah this past month o' [rather than character o' above] June)

Home thereafter, with another orchestrated page of Esther Xerxes: VIII. DUETTO - "What is it" (Esther and Xerxes).