The newest season of the Davis Musical Theater Company started with The Secret Garden, so last night we showed up to take our usual seats, looking forward to a new year of entertaining fun.
I am very familiar with the story on which this play is based - about a little girl whose parents die of cholera, so she's sent to live with her uncle who is still mourning the death of his wife ten years ago. There is a cousin whom everyone thinks is going to die, and a garden hidden away that used to belong to the dead wife, and in the spirit of saccharine and sap that seems to dominate most of the stories written by this author, the little orphan girl manages to help cure her cousin, thereby helping cure the melancholy of both her uncle and herself. Blah blah, insert happy ending here.
The play, however, tended to muddle the story quite a bit. For one thing, since the original story didn't really have a villain, whoever wrote the play apparently felt that it needed one. Next, the play's author didn't think that the audience would be able to figure out how deeply the uncle felt the loss of his wife, and so made a point to beat us all over the head with this fact with all the subtlety of an elephant trying to tiptoe across the stage.
As for the rest…well, I'll simply be kind and note that most of the songs were probably quite difficult to sing, or that perhaps the accompanying orchestra was a bit too loud and this was why a majority of those on stage felt they had to shout all their lines at the top of their lungs. Let's just say that this was not one of the DMTC's better performances, by any stretch of the imagination, and leave it at that, shall we?
It was over pie and laughter after the play that my mom mentioned that they were going to a home tour on Saturday. Naturally, I perked right up with interest. I'm still riding high on the success of the dining room makeover I just accomplished, and here was this opportunity to tour some of the nicer homes in our little town. I could see what sort of things other people did, and maybe get ideas for what to tackle next in our house.
This afternoon the four of us hopped in a car, picked up the list of addresses, and started off on the tour. We saw a home belonging to a sheep-ranching family (which you could figure out rather quickly by all the sheep-related décor), and a home where someone got whapped repeatedly upside the head with the Country Cute stick until they were dizzy (let's just say that you needed an insulin shot after you walked out of that one). There was the house with the koi pond that had two rather bored looking turtles and the bedroom with one wall painted a bold, beautiful purple, and the house with the tiny model trains displayed on thin molding along the walls. Actually, that one was the favorite of the whole tour, not only for the incredible use of color and decorating, but also for the fact that they managed pull off painting the guest room hot neon pink and make it work. We also saw a 6000 square foot mansion built in the 1880's that sits on 80 acres of land and screamed out to become a bed and breakfast. If anyone's interested, it's for sale. Cough up 1.35 million bucks and it's all yours.
I'm not sure I found anything that leaped out at me for any new home-decorating projects, although I did see a lot of things that I would never, never, not even if you held a gun to my head, do in *my* house. I also found myself eying the various painting jobs in some of the homes (sponge painting is in, I tell you. It's everywhere!) and smugly noticing that I did one heck of a better job at it than anyone in those homes we saw. I need to be careful with this smug thing, however, because we've been toying with the idea of wallpaper, and if I don't get some sense knocked into me pretty soon, I have an uneasy feeling that it won't be long until I find myself playing contortionist as I attempt to match patterns around bathroom fixtures.