stratford in nine acts

Act One:
—a favourite art gallery that’s in-between exhibits. Nuts.

ACT TWO: a secret path behind said gallery that leads to stairs that lead to the Avon River.
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ACT THREE: swans au naturel.
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ACT FOUR: swans who’ve inadvertently walked into a trap and are now headed for their winter digs. Much hissing when nabbed, especially among the young ones who’ve never been through this before. When asked if the birds enjoy their off season indoor camping arrangement [I asked this hopefully, by the way, with several toes crossed] the handlers said… and I quote: “Nope.”
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ACT FIVE: Stitch, who lost an eye to a mink last year. Seasonal shifts are child’s play to him; no hissy fits, he’s all one-eyed dignity.
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The last time I ordered coffee, some many years ago, I was given a cup of regular instead of decaf and I jangled something frightening. I realize the jangle is part of coffee’s charm but I didn’t care for that “HELLLOOOO!!!! I’M AWAKE NOW!!” feeling and have been a tea girl ever since. Black, white, green, rooibos, lapacho bark, herbals, tisanes, roots, bits of old leather, anything but coffee. Hence, ACT SIX: my favourite retail establishment… more Ohm than Zing.
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ACT 6-A: the colours of course.IMG_4043IMG_4044

No picture to prove this but Pazzo’s petite pizza, greens from Soiled Reputation and a perfect antipasti platter played no paltriness in the pleasure offered by Stratford’s SEVENTH act.

ACT EIGHT… the play. Mary Stuart. Wherein even the slightest facial movements by the astounding Seanna McKenna are a performance in themselves. The story—nutshell version—is about the way we divide up society and allegiances based purely on our passions [culture, religion, morals, values, aesthetics]. The playwright chose to portray this through a fictional meeting between Mary, Queen of Scots [Catholic, beautiful, all joie de vivre and super popular despite being a bit of a tart who murdered one of her three husbands] and Queen Elizabeth [Protestant, not so fun but a dedicated monarch] during which meeting Mary calls Elizabeth a bastard for her illegitimate status and [therefore] dubious right to a throne Mary reckons should be hers. Well, of course it’s never really about the throne, is it? Deeper issues lurk—deceptions, insecurities, jealousy, guilt, politics, family names, bloodlines, history… All that and more than a few good laughs. Yes, it’s true… there are moments of delicious humour. Three thumbs up.
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ACT NINE: homeward. Via pumpkin patches and planes in pale purple skies.
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Applause. Exit right. Fade out…

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