A Farewell for Charlie, Day 9
Surrounded by January snow flurries, I parted with old clothes and other belongings at the local Goodwill store this afternoon, marking the beginning of a series of goodbyes. I will never see those possessions again, except perhaps as part of a stranger’s new wardrobe as she passes me on the street or subway. On the contrary, I hope to again have the pleasure of using the exercise facilities at the Reebok Sports Club someday, though not likely soon. Since my one week membership ended Wednesday, I said farewell to Reebok and began a new routine elsewhere. Yesterday an old woman using weight machines in a pair of furry Ugg boots caught my eye at Reebok; today at Planet Fitness, my $10/month gym, it was a man in a purple and black plastic suit running on a treadmill. Oh yes, they exist. You can even buy yours online (please don’t). At least I still have entertaining people to watch, a few television channels from which to choose, and as many cardio and weight machines as I really need. For yoga, my talented friend Aja Nisenson and I plan to go to some pay-what-you-can classes at Yoga to the People. Incidentally, if you like a good one-woman show, I’ll be attending Aja’s Wednesday night performance of Piccola Cosi next week. Perhaps I’ll see you there.
Unlike moving forward from those minor farewells today, not knowing when I’ll next see my colleagues at the Metropolitan Opera remains one of the hardest parts of my current career. Tonight, I sang my final performance at the Met for this season, cleaned out my desk in the women’s dressing room, and said goodbye to my friends for now. Judging by the exciting path I began following two weeks ago, in part because of this blog and my new-found motivation, I expect this period of my life to open up opportunities for growth through auditions, networking, and hopefully new gigs. Nevertheless, I struggle to leave a high-quality job, especially my favorite gig at the Met, and especially without any contracts secured yet for next year.
Uncertainty unquestionably has its challenges, though I imagine finality also carries with it much excitement and difficulty. I can’t begin to imagine how Charles Anthony felt, the tenor who played the Emperor in Turandot tonight, on this his final performance of fifty-seven years as a soloist on the Metropolitan Opera stage. Truly amazing. How does one complete his one hundred eleventh role in his sixty-seventh opera at eighty years of age? After apparently having some medical difficulties this week, while wearing a patch on his right eye, Charles Anthony boldly and believably sings and acts the Emperor with grace and passion. What a man to admire. Diecimila anni to you, Charlie Anthony. May we all be as bold, as talented, as fortunate, and as blessed as we depart from our current road to tackle life’s next journey.