Old folk at lunch

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Voting and St. John's



A busy day yesterday: An election and a concert. I voted at about 11am. My local polling place was VERY well-staffed and well managed. I was in and out in 10 minutes -- unlike the way many Americans have had to line up for hours in their previous Federal elections.

There were of course separate ballot papers for the Senate and the lower house and the fact that the two ballot papers are very different in size means that it is almost impossible to get the two mixed up. Nonetheless there was a lady standing by the ballot boxes to see that everybody put their paper in the right box. Very good for absent-minded people like me!

I gave my Senate vote to Pauline, of course. Her policy of restricting Muslim immigration is the only sensible one for any Western nation, in my opinion. She only got about a quarter of the votes she needed for a Senate seat, however, so I think she has had her day.

That night Anne and I went to a performance of Handel's "Messiah" at St. John's Cathedral. It is on every year and I rarely miss it. Being a great stone cathedral, St John's is of course a marvellous venue for it. The performance was put on by the Bach Society, of which I was once a member. I knew a few people in the choir. The singers were all good. We even had a good tenor! (Massingham). The orchestral forces were a bit under-strength, though. Only one bassonist! I don't know what they would have done if she had called in sick!

Because I was steeped in the Bible in my teens, I recognized and understood the scriptural quotations that form the libretto so it was rather like meeting old friends again for me. When, for instance, I heard "even so in Christ shall all be made alive", and "The trumpet shall sound", I was thinking: "1 Corinthians 15". It was a great evening. The aria that was ringing in my head afterwards was, unsurprisingly, "The trumpet shall sound". It is quite marvellous and joyous music that does great justice to the faith and words of St. Paul.

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