Like most days, one has the hope and expectation that all will go according to plan, and certainly the day started that way. Knowing that I was going to be posting a blog today I was looking for anything that might be newsworthy other than stating the time that I woke up, brushed my teeth, sang a concert, ate some great food (this is Italy after all), and went to bed. In the end I would rather it was that way. If it had been, I would say that we left Tolmezzo at 9:30am for a 40 minute drive to Forni di Sopra (real time 1 hour and 15 minute drive), that we spent a glorious day in a picturesque alpine village set among the stunning Dolomites, that the architecture has a strongly Bavarian flavour, that a good portion of that time was spent at the home of Susan Sherwood and her husband where we were able to receive a well deserved rest with wonderful food prepared by Susan, that we got to do our laundry (yay!), that we did sing a great concert to a standing room only crowd and were blessed to share that concert with the great Italian Male Choir, Coro Polifonico di Ruda (along with an accompanying electrical storm and torrential downpour), that we had a great Italian meal after the concert, and that we are now on our way home and I am writing my blog at 1:50am on the bus (oh and now I am starting to feel a little sick writing this blog on a twisty mountain road, plus the laptop keeps slipping off the table). I could write about all of this, but I am not, because today is the day that our poor dear Russell went sliding.

Now Russell is not generally poor nor is he always dear, but today both adjectives ring true. It did look innocent enough. People looked like they were having fun. It did not interest me that much, but I was happy they were enjoying it. It apparently interested some of our group, Russell included. They went.

I was at Susan’s enjoying the serenity of their back yard, probably savouring some delectable treat that she had created when the group arrived. My first response was to question why Russell had painted half of his face red. However, to my horror I realized very quickly that this was not paint. Russell’s sliding adventure had gone horribly awry. Apparently he somehow landed on his face and one arm on a very rough plastic slide.

The wounds are numerous and extensive but as far as I know it was mostly superficial and there was nothing serious enough to require stitches. He has received excellent medical attention from both within and outside of the choir. Russell did not sing tonight and we missed him. As many of you know, Russell looks for the good in a situation or maintains a positive attitude. In this case he has done his best to remain positive, because right now it is hard to see the good. It is inevitable that this incident will become part of the Chor Leoni 2012 summer tour lore and that we will even laugh about it with Russell in time, but for now we commiserate with him and wish Russell a speedy recovery.

Time of arrival in Tolmezzo: 2:40am.

James Emery, bass

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