My mother and I got home from our road trip through western NY and the Pittsburgh area of Pennsylvania yesterday. Overall it was a good trip. The only bad part was when I hit a television while driving on the expressway. From a distance it looked like just a patch of tar and once I realized what it was, we were too close to avoid it. Fortunately, it bounced away from the car instead of going under it and I didn't cause a multi-car accident. The only damage seems to be a dented license plate, but we're having our mechanic take a look to make sure none of the TV parts got lodged up beneath the engine.
I mentioned the Carnegie Museums earlier. It's actually four museums but two of them, the museums of Natural History and Art are in connected buildings and you only have to pay one admission fee! I've been there several times but I hadn't been able to visit in at least three years. This time I spent about four blissful hours wandering around the museum and still didn't see anything. I managed to resist buying anything in the gift shops, although I almost caved in when I saw they had black and gold plushies of Bast and Anubis!
While driving, we mostly listened to CDs. We have a tradition that's been going on since I was about 8: when we're on a road trip, we listen to Phantom of the Opera
, analyzing the crazy characters and the plot. We've been doing this for so long, I can't always remember what's canon and what's our own personal fanon. For your entertainment, here are some of our conclusions this time around:( spoilers behind cut )
I also have the soundtrack for Disney's Sleeping Beauty
. I have many issues with Disney and their fairy tale movies, but I'm in love with the music. (Tchaikovsky fangirls, unite!) We do the same thing to this movie, although not as often. Reactions during this listening:( more spoilers! )
As my mother likes PotO, I thought "Why not?" and had her listen to Elisabeth
for the first time. Neither of us knows German, but I've read enough English-language synopses to know the basic plot and I thought she'd enjoy the music. (My recording has Maya Hakvoort as Elisabeth and Mate Kamaras as Death. I also just want to say that I will be forever grateful to people on my f-list for introducing me to awesome foreign-language musicals.) It's also more of a highlights collection rather than the whole musical. I really got Mom's attention when I said, "You know that while dress they put Christine into in PotO during "Think of Me"? That's based on a dress the real Elisabeth wore!"
(I did take one semester of German when I was in college but the professor annoyed me so much that I purposefully forgot almost everything I learned. I probably would've been more invested if I had known about Elisabeth
and Tanz der Vampire
I was able to provide a fairly good summary of what was taking place as we listened, though a few times I had to say, "[Character] is singing but I don't really have an idea of what's going on in this song." I also gave a running commentary on the historical background and what parts made it into the musical. While talking about Elisabeth's marriage, her family, and her love/hate relationship with Death, Mom asked at one point, "So is Death Rudolph's father?" I laughed really hard. I also had to say often, "Look, these people have issues."
I also want to introduce her to the German-language musical adaptation of Rebecca
, because she loves the original novel and Hitchcock film. Any suggestions on websites or Youtube clips?
There were a few rough moments (aside from the near-car crash) but overall it was a good trip.