A musician's life is sometimes measured by the passing of time due to those gigs that one has in one's diary that come around on an annual basis.... this week is one of those weeks and as I write this I am sitting in one of my favourite places - my wife's Aunty Olive's kitchen. I love this place as it has been the scene of many a culinary triumph as I have grappled with serving up dinner or lunch for a hungry, and it has to be said, appreciative, large family crowd as we have been here for Christmas every year bar two for the last 23yrs. I'm not here for Christmas just yet (two more weeks for that), but she lives just north of Dublin where I'll be for the next four days, rehearsing and performing with the Irish Philharmonic, 2 theatre schools, a young people's choir and an RTE Radio One presenter on the Snowman Christmas Special. This has become one of my yearly highlights as the countdown to Christmas truly starts with this gig. I feel Santa's magic run right through me as I conduct many of those Christmas standards... you all know the ones I mean!!!
There is an added bonus this year though as I have my wonderful parents with me who are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this Saturday so a swanky Dublin Hotel awaits and the sights and sounds of this wonderful city at their command.... oh and not to mention that they get to see number one son do his thing at the show on Sunday. I am indeed a lucky man to have had such support from these two remarkable and gorgeous people. I'm sure we all think ours are the best but my two are right up there.
It's been quite a long day today as we have had some weather problems which added a delay to our flight. I felt that I should hold my parents' hands so to speak on this one as they haven't flown since 1965!
More tomorrow as we begin rehearsals....