February 8-10: Remember that time I took piano lessons for 7 years?

Couldn’t help but wish I had been a prodigy after last night’s Open Mic night hosted by Rachel Kaye and Daniel Susser. Bassoonists, pianists, guitarists, poets and one BRIT nominated singer/songerwriter (that would be Alex Clare, more about that in a minute) made quite a memorable evening.

I conveniently spent Shabbos at Rachel’s house and had a fantastic time. Her parents were out of town so it was just Rachel, me and her friend Adi. Believe it or not, I helped cook. I made sushi, sautéed green beans and an avocado mango cucumber salad. I know, your mind is blown.  A much needed superbly chilled out Shabbat. I often find myself at kumzitses, bonfires, jam sessions, whatevers, and people sometimes sing hebrew/israeli songs and I remain perpetually disassitifed because everyone sings the same lame songs over and over again. In other words, no one is familiar with the band Alma. UNTIL THIS WEEKEND. Adi and Rachel love Alma and I finally found a crowd of people to harmonize with. That’s what we did Friday night and it was wonderful. Shabbos day was equally as chill and full of great conversation. And Cadbury chocolate. I can’t think of anything needed to make that more perfect.

After Shabbos, we went straight into Open Mic night set up mode. Chairs were moved, tables were disassembled, camera tripods were set up, epic playlists were made. There was a functional microphone so needless to say some people couldn’t pull themselves away from hearing the sound of their own amplified voices. A highly entertaining and amusing form of helping out. Testing 1, 2?

Ok. So. Alex Clare. I hadn’t heard of him before I got here, but I was once in a cafe and it was made known to me that an Alex Clare song was playing overhead and fun fact he’s a frum Jew. Another fun fact, he’s Rachel Kaye’s neighbor, hence his impromptu (highly planned but hush hush) appearance he sang this song and was unbelievable:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v76kN-iZy1A

The event was great fun and I met great people and had great conversations, great great great. Got home and realized I left my scarf at Rachel’s. The next morning I learned that I left my one remaining hat there as well. And my sweatshirt.

Happy Rosh Chodesh Adar, y’all.

Moving along onto Sunday.

Guess what time I woke up today? 11:45! I don’t know what got into me but I don’t regret it. It was also disgusting out so there wasn’t much incentive to get out of bed and run to the nearest outdoor market. Instead, I decided to stay inside and work on the Rob Ryan papercut I’ve been plagarizing. I had to change my scalpel blade and ended up slicing my thumb. I though that I needed stitches but thanks to Dr. Russie’s advice, pressure for a while did the trick. Then, being the fool I am, with one finger down I risked my hands again to finish what I had started and successfully switched the blade! And kept cutting. I taught myself to hold the scalpel a different way to avoid putting pressure on my thumb. I’ll be more careful next time?

At some point I came down with severe cabin fever and needed to get out of the flat despite the inclement weather. My parents are coming this week (huzzah!) and asked me to scout out some hotels. So I did. In the freezing cold rain sans umbrella. I MUST REALLY LOVE YOU! It was nice to get out and walk some new streets. In themonth I’ve been here, I haven’t ventured out of my flat in that direction so it was good to get my feet wet. Literally. Now I’m sitting on the couch, writing to you, my dutiful reader, with no intention of going back out. However, I am easily swayed.

Up next: Museum of Natural History Wilflife Photographer of the Year exhibit and Muswell Hill Library in Northwest London. More later…and I’ll post pictures when I’m at the studio. Waste of time and bandwidth trying to upload them at home.

Cheers and chodesh tov!

Sarah

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