I have had a busy week reconnecting with so many friends and colleagues. The Monday evening recital at the Wigmore Hall was an opportunity to see some Suffolk friends, Humphrey and Christina Burton, who live in Aldeburgh, also Michael and Phyllida Flint who have lived in Orford for years, just by the famous little church where Britten's Noyes Fludde and the church operas were first performed.
I spent much time at the Garrick Club on Tuesday and Wednesday, passing past Nelson's Column on my way. Trafalgar Square is mercifully much less crowded in October than in the summer when it is thronged! The Garrick is a place for chance encounters with old friends as well as a great meeting place for excellent food and drink on a pre-arranged basis! Matthew Epstein and I enjoyed just such a happy dinner there on Tuesday evening.
I had bumped into Nicholas Snowman there by chance two weeks ago and we met up for a jolly lunch yesterday with so many memories of the past years to amuse us. Nicholas took over from me as assistant to the Head of Music Staff straight from Cambridge in 1967 when I graduated to be Administrator of the new Glyndebourne Touring Opera, as well as being Artistic Director of the Wexford Festival. Nicholas also multi-tasked, for the London Sinfonietta was started from his office at Glyndebourne the following year.
I was also delighted by chance to see Gavin Henderson. We go back to the time that as a 24 year old prodigy Gavin ran the York Festival, 40 years ago. He brought our Wexford Festival productions of Kata Kabanova and Il pirata to York in 1972 - the first and possibly the only time that Wexford productions have been seen outside Wexford. I guess we will get together properly in the coming weeks.
My thirteen years in Chicago made it difficult for me to keep in touch with these old friends and colleagues.
Tomorrow at last all my stuff arrives from Chicago - I have no idea how I am going to make room for it all in my much smaller London apartment. Some things will just have to go into store. But it will be good to have my things around me again.