Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Song of Joy

Another memory bullet from the Villa

The building where we were housed was the restored main farm house. It was big. High ceilings on every floor. A whole upper level that was an echo of the middle floor: large main sitting area and four separate double bedrooms off of that sitting area. Only the highest floor was empty: not refurbished yet. We got it in our minds that the upper floor may have been inhabited by residents of centuries past. The house slept twelve comfortably. It wasn’t until the third day that we discovered another bedroom off of the dining room. That’s how big the house was. The moment I am remembering took place in the formal dining room. This room had a large round table around which our whole group could sit. Anne’s job was table decorations. If you know Anne you will know why this was her assignment. And why it was no chore for her and a blessing for us.

One evening, even before too much red wine was consumed, we started singing and realized that the acoustics in the dining room were absolutely made for singing. Better than a shower. So we started a round. You might remember the round song with the three verses:

One bottle pop, two bottle pop, three bottle pop, four bottle pop, five bottle pop, six bottle pop, seven seven bottle pop.

Don’t put you muck in my dustpan, my dustpan, my dustpan, don’t put your muck in my dustpan, my dustpan’s full.

Fish and chips and vinegar, vinegar, vinegar. Fish and chips and vinegar. Pepper, pepper, pepper, pot.

We did our own Tuscany version:
One bottle wine, two bottle wine, three bottle wine, four bottle wine, five bottle wine, six bottle wine, seven seven bottle wine.

Olive oil and balsamic, balsamic, balsamic. Olive oil and balsamic. Pepper, pepper, pepper, pot.

Don’t put your guest in my villa, my villa, my villa. Don’t put your guest in my villa. My villa’s full.

I tell you: we sounded good. Record worthy. Legends in our own minds. I think only two out of our group of nine would actually be considered decent singers, under normal circumstances. I’m not naming names: don’t want to hurt the unnamed. But something about the setting, the ancient walls, the time of joyfulness made it all come together and we were good. All of us. Not a bad one in the group. Later in the week, our English neighbors commented on the beautiful music coming from the dining room. We rocked!

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