SLSQ in Baltimore

My kimchi chige -- still boiling violently. [written earlier today] I've had more than a few "what's the hell am I doing?" - moments during the past week, strangely timed, often immediately after being in the company of others. It's not really that I'm lonely, although... loneliness in the presense of others is far worse than true physical loneliness. Who knows what's wrong? Maybe it's a side-effect of trying to adapt to New York.

However, I was treated to the company of good friends Barry, Geoff and Livia this weekend, which lifted my mood. The St. Lawrence String Quartet is in town performing at Peabody and Johns Hopkins, and we took advantage of the opportunity to shoot some urgently needed press photos with their new cellist, Alberto. After struggling to wake up on Saturday (results of having stayed up in their Baltimore hotel room until 5:30am watching Korea somehow beat Spain), I looked out the window and realized that I was five floors above Jenny, in the same building I was in the last (and first) time I was in Baltimore! I wish she was in town. I could have surprised her by showing up at her door.:)

After the photo shoot (it is really, really hard to get a casual photo of four people without any closed eyes ending up in the shot!), Alberto and I sweated our way back to the hotel to fetch Livia. Walking into the late-afternoon Baltimore sun lugging a cello and a bag full of camera equipment is not a pleasant experience. Ugh.

The concert was good -- especially during a moment in the third movement of Shostakovich's String Quartet #3 (just after Geoff broke a string), when some of Barry's hair magically stuck to the side of his cheek, making him look like a violin-playing Elvis, causing Livia and Alberto to be transformed into vibrating bundles of suppressed laughter. It was hilarious at the time, but it can't be effectively described. You had to be there, I guess. :)

In the evening, a group of us went out (accompanied by Marina's cello) to a fantastic Korean restaurant with the one of the most talkative (and funny) waitresses I have ever encountered. The food was very, very good -- much better than the Korean food I've eaten in New York, and almost everyone at the table was well versed in the intricacies of the cuisine (probably because they were all musicians, and for some reason, a good number of the pianists and violinists you meet at conservatories will likely be Korean).

I'm now on a train heading back to New York. I have to move all of my stuff to Queens tomorrow as part of a slow migration into psuedo-homelessness for the month of July, and it is with a heavy heart that I look forward to returning to the "office"/storage room/poker room tomorrow.