We boarded the bus promptly this morning, and were happy to have two out of our three sick Singers return to the fold, feeling better. The one still missing will rejoin us tomorrow. Dubious Mexican restaurants are now banned. (Although they say it looked very reputable.)
Rather than travel back the same road that we have come to know so well, we took the ferry across the Sound to reach Seattle. It was kind of a fun break in routine. Many enjoyed the lounge, others stayed in the bus, and some braved the chilly air for some photos. The day started sunny, but that did not last long. We soon had drizzle that turned into real rain. I’m trying to remember that is why the rhododendrons are huge bushes and even trees here. They are so vivid they must glow in the dark.
Our drive back to Oregon included a stop at Multnomah Falls, which is a beautiful waterfall. The area almost feels like a rain forest, with thick canopies of trees and growth on either side of the road. The footbridge was covered for repairs after a rock had crashed into it, but the falls still fell and looked good, even in the rain. We drove along the Columbia River Gorge for some miles, a gorgeous area. Today the mountains were shrouded in mist and clouds, but still peeked out enough to give us plenty to admire.
We arrived in the rain at Hood River Middle School, a charming older school with an old-fashioned auditorium. I quite liked the murals on either side of the proscenium, and the quote over it: “How manifold are Thy works. The earth is full of Thy riches.” After a quick rehearsal and readjusting of staging, we walked a block to the LDS chapel for a nice meal. We appreciate the efforts our sponsors make to ensure that the choir is well taken care of.
When we came back from dinner to dress for the concert, we were surprised to already have an audience of 20 seated in the auditorium! They were eager to have good seats—and then they just kept coming. We had a very good audience in place by the concert’s beginning, and we knew from the first song that they would love the concert. (I noted that those who had been there before brought pillows to make the wooden seats more comfortable for the performance.)
This audience showed such appreciation, and talked with many of the Singers afterwards. I got a kick out of those collecting autographs to go with the portrait photos in the program. If the comments we heard at the CD table are a true sampling of our audience, they really loved the concert. We certainly enjoyed performing in Hood River!
Heavy rain after the concert motivated us to move fast to our various vehicles; we hope all get a good night’s rest and that health returns to the entire choir tomorrow. There really is a spiritual hole in the group when someone is missing.