Booker and Beyond Book Club

Contributed by Dorothy Yuan

After the enforced hiatus to our monthly meetings the group was finally allowed to meet outdoors in the courtyard.  Fortunately, the number was kept at exactly ten and an active discourse progressed, albeit through voices muffled by masks.  It turns out that few of us enjoyed reading The Vexations,by Caitlin Horrocks, the book chosen for this session.Nonetheless, Ann Carlson lead us through an interesting discussion on the “vexations” engendered in the readers by the author, a discussion that amply shows, again, the value of our book club.

 

Hopefully, we will be able to resume full activity by our next meeting, scheduled for July 15.  The book chosen for that session is The Dutch House by Ann Patchett.  The meeting is open to ALL.  Even if you choose not to read the book you’ll find the discussion interesting.

Or more background on the Booker and Beyond Book Club, click here.

Spring Plant Sale – Orders Being Taken

Contributed by Mike McCulley and Joe Howard

Get ready to plant!  This spring’s plant sale begins today. Mike McCulley, Chair of the Garden Committee, reports, “We are not going to be able to have our plant sale in the traditional way this year, because of the restrictions, and that is why we are doing a virtual sale and need to get the order form on the RA website.”  So, click here to download the order form.  Joe Howard has included pictures of the flowers and vegetables available on the order form. You complete the order form with a check made out to the Residents Association and return it to Mike. (The form has all the instructions.) Plants will be delivered on a first come, first serve.

Mike reports that the committee began planning right after last year’s sale. They got a new supplier, a new watering and fertilizing program and the expertise of Kyle Olsen. As the pictures show, the plants are growing well! A crew of residents planted 1200 flower plugs in early March and later planted 250 vegetable seeds – tomatoes, peppers and herbs. They have been diligently cultivating them since.

Collington’s 2019 Holiday Bazaar: a Big Success and a Happy Event!

Contributed by Marian Fuchs

According to Maja Keech, the organizer for the past 10 years, “the 2019 bazaar was the biggest and best we’ve ever had!”

More than 70 sales people sold crafts, home-made foods and donated items to contribute about $4000 to the coffers of the Residents Association for 2020.  The event also offered residents a chance to get their knives and scissors sharpened.

As you’ll see from the photos, it was a happy event, with many satisfied shoppers and plenty of excellent merchandise on offer.

Peter Basquin – Our New Resident Concert Pianist

Contributed by Marian Fuchs

Peter Basquin, a new Collington resident, recently gave his first in-house recital. His career has included recital and concert appearances in the US, Europe and the Far East.  He has performed at the Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center and at Carnegie Hall.  He and his wife Katie moved to Collington this year, and now he’s playing in our auditorium!

At the end of October, Peter packed the hall with a record capacity, and entertained the rapt audience with a range of pieces ranging from a Scarlatti sonata to a Bolcom rag.  He included an impromptu by Shubert, a piece of fun called Kitten on the Keys, with two lovely longer pieces:  Haydn’s sonata in E-flat Major, and Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight’ sonata.  Peter introduced his pieces with interesting information about their structure and the lives of their composers.  It was a magical hour.

One member of the audience later wrote: “Watching you play just a few feet away from where I was sitting, I saw your economy of movement and felt the connection from head to heart to hands to keys to the strings . For us, the listeners, you gave a profound sense of involvement with the complexity of the sounds and forms emerging in front of us.  It was just wonderful to be a part , for a short while, of your life’s passion.” 

He concluded by saying, surely on behalf of all who were there, “I hope you would be willing to do repeat performances on a regular, if not frequent basis!”

Music at Collington is going from strength to strength.  We now have the Collington Singers, under the professional supervision of maestro Marilyn Haskel as well as the Kollington Kats, whose players grow in skill and quantity with every performance.   We are in the third year of having two young musicians-in-residence from the University of Maryland playing, along with many of their colleagues, a series of performances throughout the year.  We have frequent and varied exciting weekend concerts arranged by resident Carol Kempske, and music every weekday evening by talented residents in the Ivy Lounge. I doubt a single CCRC our size could even come close!