We went to the Maltby Cafe and had an incredibly carbo-laden lunch afterwards (biscuits and sausage and eggs and gravy for him, fabulous Maltby club - turkey, ham, bacon, and cheese sandwich with a side of fried potatoes - for me, a giant cinnamon roll for both of us), then hit the Northwest Outdoor Center to get some kayaking info for our trip to La Paz. And, um, I appear to have fallen asleep shortly thereafter. I'm guessing housecleaning is the only thing on the schedule for tonight, and maybe some packing.
Carmen last night was ... well, fine. The songs were very hummable but I was disappointed in how dull the set and costumes were. Carmen had a very good voice, and I was able to lose myself in the pleasure of listening to her sing when the stupid hearing aid battery of some fool an aisle over wasn't making me want to claw out my eardrums. I was also pleased that the show very successfully incorporated Spanish musical themes, unlike other shows set in "exotic" locales, and that the "exotic" Spanish sounds very effectively defined character and moved the story forward.
It's so strange, though to see what is essentially a Victorian opera through my modern eyes. Carmen is supposed to be "a wicked woman," but her crime, such as it is, consists in wanting to live freely, to choose who she loves and reject who she does not. The "hero," Don Jose, is supposedly the one with a grievance, as Carmen promises him her love but costs him everything he values in his life, but I found myself aggravated by his inability to take responsibility for his actions. He never says that Carmen tricked him (indeed she is never anything but honest), but his desire alone is supposed to be motivation for her love him back? Who has ever loved someone who was so willing to abase themselves for someone else? Don Jose was so much more interesting when he had a life of his own, just like Escamilio the bullfighter was, and is, at the end of the opera. Perhaps I'll go dig up the score and read it in French so I can really get the exact meaning of the words, especially for Carmen's first song, "L'amour est un oiseau rebelle." At any rate, I felt Carmen was the sympathetic character and regret that Seattle Opera felt obliged to have her laughing at Don Jose at the very end so he was somehow justified in killing her.