This year for Valentine’s Day one of the things that I bought for Kevin was a book published by Howard Books called “Fun & Creative Dates for Married Couples, 52 Ways to Enjoy Life Together.
Having been married for 30 years we have been on many, many dates. Sometimes it can be hard to come up with new and fun ideas. So, when I saw this book I didn’t think twice, we had to have it!
This past Sunday afternoon we went on our “First” date – “Music Makes the W0rld Go Round”. For this date we chose to go to a performance of “The Band of the Irish Guards” and “The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders 5th Battalion the Royal Regiment of Scotland“.
After looking through the book and reading what kind of date ideas were in it, we happened to see a commercial on television advertising the concert being held at the Balboa Theater near Horton Plaza in downtown San Diego.
Before the downturn in the economy in California and the subsequent slow down in the California construction industry, Kevin and I had been considering going to Ireland (where we both have ancestry roots) to spend our 30th anniversary. After being laid off from my position with a residential home framing company and Kevin’s company experiencing a substantial slow down in commercial construction, we decided the prudent decision would be to wait for another anniversary to travel to the Emerald Isle. Our passion for Ireland and anything Irish and even Scottish has only deepened.
We jumped at the idea of attending the concert and Kevin got online and ordered our tickets right away. Since we knew it was going to be an indoor concert and it was marching bands, pipers, drummers and dancers of the Highlands I didn’t think we would want to be sitting down low. I wanted to be well back from the volume of the instruments and also be high enough to see the marching formations. Our seats were perfect. We were center stage in the balcony level. It was very impressive to see how tightly both bands could march and play their instruments all on a rather smaller stage than they are probably more accustomed to.
The program had a wonderful narrator, Dr. Floyd R. Herzog. He had a rich and captivating voice that made us feel like we were there amongst the heather and thistle while we waited to enjoyed the pipes, drums and dancers. The concert lasted about two hours, starting with lots of fanfare, bagpipes and drums marching on. They performed the national anthems of both England and the United States. Music from the Highlands, the valleys, the glens and a dance of the Highland Fling were followed by music from the Royal castles changing of the guard. There was about a fifteen minute intermission and then the second half of the show began. The Argyll came out and danced to pipes and drums. A very special moment of the concert was when tribute to all of the armed forces, The Army, The Marines, The Navy, The Air Force, The Coast Guard, The Merchant Marines and America the Beautiful were played. As each branches song was played those who have or are serving in that particular branch were asked to stand and be recognized for their selfless service to our countries. The very emotional finale including Ode to Joy, The Day Thou Gavest, Amazing Grace and Auld Lang Syne.
I would say that it was a very fun and enjoyable 1st date for the beginning of our adventure through our new book!