Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Last thoughts (sort of)

After the Finals performance I helped push racks to the staging area and load pans. My bags were packed and waiting in a friend’s van. I transferred them to a cab and made my way to the airport around 2am. Yeah, that’s really early, but it didn’t make any sense to travel all the way back south to San Fernando with Skiffle just to turn around and head back north to the airport to make my 5:30am international flight check-in.

I spent Sunday, February 10, traveling home. When I hit Miami International at noon I reactivated my mobile phone (without an international calling plan my phone had been off for almost six weeks) and received a text detailing the Panorama Finals results. I reached Virginia a little before 9pm and my house on the campus of Sweet Briar College shortly thereafter. The next morning, j’ouvert in Trinidad, I arrived to my office at the SBC music department to a thoughtful sign created by some of my students. The colors don’t quite come through in the photo, and this obscures the text a bit, but it reads, “Congratulations and Welcome Back, Dr. Jones. Sincerely, The Orchestra.”

As promised to friends and band mates in Skiffle, below I’ve included a photo from my first chamber orchestra rehearsal after returning from Trinidad (photo by chamber orchestra member, Siena Hasbrouck). I know, you don’t have player profiles to read of SBC students like they have of you, but with any luck we’ll be down soon for a summer program and you’ll meet some of them then.

If anyone sends a really great picture, video, link, or story, I may post it, and I’ll return to this site from time to time to moderate any comments and make sure the links are active, but in the main, this post completes the blog about my experiences in southern Trinidad during Panorama 2013.

It has been, I think, successful – 50 posts, 8,500+ words, 70 photos, 12 videos, 14 internet links, and thousands of site visitors from 19 countries (Antigua & Barbuda, Canada, China, France, Germany, Grenada, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Switzerland, Taiwan, Timore-Leste, Trinidad & Tobago, United Kingdom, and the United States of America) as of early morning, February, 13, 2013. Most importantly, it got people in Skiffle thinking about people and music at Sweet Briar and people at Sweet Briar thinking about people and music in southern Trinidad.

With any luck we’ve begun a process of mutually enriching intercultural exchange that will touch a lot of lives in the years to come. That’s my hope, anyway . . . 

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