Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Everything I Know About Life, I Learned in Choir

Current Mood: Illuminated

Current Song: A ghazal, very fittingly

I am back from a whirlwind trip to Montreal and Ottawa with the Canadian Ismaili Muslim Youth Choir. This is probably one of my favourite trips in the last few years. It was completely exhausting, at times frustrating and challenging, but well worth it! We went to bed no earlier than half past one on most days, and were due down for breakfast no later than 9 or 10 AM on most days. The schedule was as follows: sing, eat, sing, eat, sing, eat...well...you get the point.

Favourite Highlights:

Montreal: Oreo Cheesecake at D'Luxe Patisserie, the juicebar in the shape of a giant orange across the hotel, taking the Via Rail to Ottawa

Ottawa: Visiting the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat, visiting the Centre for Pluralism, Singing at Centrepointe theatre again (home of Yaqzan) and the amazing hospitality, the Honeymoon Suite that I had to share with a fellow soprano...picture below.
Overall: Singing and working with HJ, meeting some amazingly talented singers from across Canada and of course spending some time elsewhere doing what I love to do.
Things I learned this trip:

I need a new camera and some photography lessons so my pictures don't suck so badly

I need to learn french, because it's cool and functional

I'm moving to Ottawa at some point in my life

I really should never stop singing because it's very hard to start again.

I had better improve my sight-reading skills or else...

I am officially old because some of the people on the tour were born in the 90's. Imagine!

There is nothing wrong with checking in online...in fact it's probably a lot faster and easier.

Vancouver will always be home
I am not eating a donair or any kind of meat on a stick for the next six to twelve months...
See some pics belowThis was our honeymoon suite bedroom in Ottawa (they ran out of doubles at the hotel...some boys didn't even get a roll out bed). Obviously invented by a dude because the Jacuzzi and the bedroom were not really separated. We even had bathrobes, champaigne glasses and one of those fancy ice buckets...Other highlights were the roll out bed in couch and the sliding door that opened right out into the parking lot. I know what you're thinking...classy joint...right?

This is the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat building that is being built on Sussex Drive in Ottawa. The Atrium is made of rock crystal and this whole compound will be home to the residences of the Aga Khan and visiting dignitaries as well as insitutional offices. Also included inside is a charbagh (4 garden) area open to the public and resource centres etc. The building is nearing completion and should be open late this year. You can learn more about it at http://www.theismaili.org/

And of course, a shot of the sunset on the way home. How lovely...

Anyway...it is technically time to get up and do some putting away of things. I shall blog again soon-ish....ciao for niao!