Tom and Anastasia (viola and harp respectively) have been hired for the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival for three or four years. After the last season, the music director invited Anastasia to be a soloist this year; she was invited to play the Ginastera Harp Concerto. It was a tremendous honor, and she has been working many months in preparation for the performance. As soon as we heard about it, Joe and I decided we wanted to attend the concert. We'd made our B&B reservations months ago.
Events of the past weeks made us wonder if we'd be able to make the trip, but Dr. Cohen said it would be fine for Joe to go. And so we did.
Driving to the western side of Virginia involves I-81, an infinitely more enjoyable drive than the I-95 we are used to taking when we go to Alexandria or to Richmond. Far less traffic, and nice scenery.
I had looked long ago for a place to stay and was pleased to get a reservation at the Joshua Wilton House, a B&B with a fine restaurant. We arrived late in the afternoon, checked in, and had a nap. We then went to the bar for a couple of appetizers and a glass of wine before heading out to the concert. The food was outstanding and we wished we had an opportunity to have a full dinner there, but Anastasa's parents and T&A's friends Shannon and Amy had also come to town for the concert and plans had been made for all of us to go out together to eat after the concert.
Anastasia looked beautiful, and her performance of the Concerto was dazzling. I felt those tears of pride and we all jumped up to give her a standing ovation. We were not surprised when the rest of the audience joined us.
On Saturday we wandered around Harrisonburg, visiting the Virginia Quilt Museum which was just a couple of blocks from our lodging, and the LQS (where I picked up a few FQs for my leader/ender project). It was a sultry day, and late in the afternoon a long nap seemed in order before that evening's concert.
I cannot say enough good things about the Joshua Wilton House. They prepared special cardiac-friendly egg white omelets for Joe and me, filling them with interesting ingredients, and were obliging when we asked if we could invite T&A to join us for our breakfast on Sunday. We'd stay there again in a minute.
Beautiful music, beautiful surroundings, lovely accommodations. All in all, a truly wonderful weekend and just what we needed.