Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Cold . . . Tired

Die hard theater-goers at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival must be willing to deal with weather if they are to watch productions in the outdoor Elizabethan theater. In the summer that might mean baking heat, but in October it is sure to mean cold and possibly wind, rain, or sleet. Rain and cold were the offerings on the night we saw "Comedy of Errors." In this picture, I am sitting bundled next to an unknown fellow who had fortified himself against the elements. The actors on the stage never missed a beat in the rain, which at one point was torrential, and the audience clapped and hollered in deep appreciation of their commitment to the "show must go on!!" The next two nights there was no rain though it was bitterly cold for "Othello" and "Our Town" (I know that's not Shakespeare, but OSF produces plays other than Shakespeare).

Did I mention that I traveled with a group of students who were for the most part in their early 20s? Well they have terrific stamina and stay up very late. On the last night, we came home and deconstructed the production of "Our Town" while eating homemade ginger caked slathered with chocolate pudding, compliments of Brandon, who is a chef at the City Hotel. Sometime during the course of the evening I had a mentioned a game we played when I was kid: SARDINES.

It's the reverse of hide-and-go-seek and it's played in the dark. One person hides and all the rest of the players hunt for this person. When they find him/her, they quietly snuggle up against the person until everyone has located the hider and all are smashed together in whatever space the person has hidden. At 1am when six of us headed for bed, the others started a game of SARDINES. Needless to say there was little sleep for us amidst the hilarity the engulfed our cottage as folks fell down the spiral staircase, tripped over ottomons, and knocked pictures off the wall. Nothing got broken and by 3am there were, mercifully, sleeping bodies every where.

But wait! We had to be out of the cottage by 9:30, packed to go home, and ready for a two-hour backstage tour. After that we had to drive 8 hours to get back to the college. Everyone was giddy with fatigue. On the drive home, we played "I spy" and told jokes on the walkie-talkies that connected our two vans as we sailed down Highway 5. I was so proud to be the one who solved a walkie-talkie mystery story from clues bandied back and forth between the vans!

Fatigue, however, was overwhelming. At one rest stop, Kevin, the driver of one of the vans, stumbled from the driver's seat onto a divider and promptly fell asleep in the middle of the day lilies while the rest of us used the restrooms and bought sustenance from various nearby food places.

Did I have fun. In a word: YES!! (And I've been sleeping for 2 days)

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