Last night I had the rare opportunity to go out with friends for a festive evening. Every year at this time Trinity University's Music Department puts on a Christmas Concert and offers it free as a gift to the San Antonio community. Some of my friends from church and I went to the show. While this was only my second time, Trinity has been doing this for 14 years now, and they are very good at it.
Most of our group decided to eat out first at La Madelaine before going to the campus. La Madelaine is a French restaurant chain which started in Texas. After some good food and conversation, we carpooled over. Finding ourselves arriving slightly late to get parking garage space, we went to one of the surface lots and walked across the lovely campus to Laurie Auditorium. The weather was misting but not cold so the walk was pleasant. Everyone headed to the concert was in a festive mood.
We got seats in the back of the auditorium but this didn't prevent us from seeing the show well or enjoying the sound. The auditorium has excellent acoustics, the stage was brightly lit, and the various groups were arranged for optimum viewing from all corners. I say groups because the program included performances by the Symphony Orchestra, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, the Parker Handbell Choir, the University Chorus, and the Trinity Choir. At two points in the performance the audience was asked to sing along with the combined choirs as they performed Jingle Bells and Joy To The World. The show lasted just about an hour and there included a combination of both classical pieces and traditional Christmas music for which the MC gave us a brief bit of history.
After the show, the friends I had ridden with took me on a tour of some of the nicer parts of the neighborhood surrounding the university. This is a place in San Antonio where the houses become mansions and the yards are huge and well landscaped. Christmas lights were already out on many of these properties so there was lots to look at. It was a nice way to start the Christmas season.
I got home just before 10:00 pm and my cats were glad to see me. The Mormons across the hall from me were saying goodbye to fellow elders and they said hi to me so even my arrival home was friendly. The whole evening had just gone right. So much so that I feel it was a gift in itself. Thank goodness for a community rich in culture, a church with people who like the arts, and friends to enjoy them with.