Monday, June 05, 2006

Charleston, Post 8 - Money, Food, Clothing

One of the most difficult things about being at Spoleto is the way money flows like water. It is extraordinarily difficult to not spend above your means here. The main reason for this is that most of the choir eats most of their meals out. (The dorms we are staying in have refrigerators and microwaves, but nothing else.) So being social with other members of the choir pretty much requires going out for meals with them, and eating out is expensive. There's also the fact that most of the choir is undergraduates, most of whom are not yet worried about paying their own rent or bills, and who suddenly have a paycheck every week. As a result, the choir culture is very much one of enjoying being in a charming city at a wonderful festival, going out to eat all the time, going out to shop all the time, and in general not worrying about conserving a lot of their paychecks. (I have a feeling that most of them would deny this, but hey, that's how it looks to me.)

At any rate, it's very hard to continually turn people down when they ask if you want to go out to dinner. It feels rude. After all, when your suite says, "Hey, we're all going out for dinner! Please come!" it's hard to say no. It's also hard to turn down the prospect of Charleston cuisine, which is not to be sneezed at, and much more appealing than Easy Mac in the microwave at the dorm. And I have to admit, I'm a foodie! With places like Merit├Ąge, Blossom, and the Hominy Grill right around the corner, it's hard to be fiscally responsible.

Then there's the fact that being in a city for a working vacation means you're tempted to visit all the little stores you might not see again, like The Brass Pirate...and there's the festival arts and crafts fair...and then there's just establishments you grow fond of, and want to support, like the Kudu Cafe.

So far I've managed better than last year, although I did visit the library book sale yesterday (library book sales are THE best thing ever) and also bought a skirt and a couple of shirts at the cheap clothing shop down the street. Speaking of clothing, Don Giovanni was interesting last night because my corset split a seam up the back right after I bounced on-stage. Since our outfits are entirely silk, people are getting used to having their pants rip, but I think this was the first time someone ripped a corset. It was probably because I waited too long to put it on (well, wouldn't you?) and it had to be laced up too quickly. Luckily it stayed on, and I kept my over-shirt on over it, but it makes it hard to concentrate on your job when you're wondering whether or not your clothes are going to fall off. Carrie the costumer said that clothes can tell when the end of a run is coming up and start to fall apart - since there's only one more performance of Don Giovanni, I guess that fits the trend.

Tonight is Mozart's Great Mass in C with Dr. Flummerfelt. We had the final dress rehearsal this morning, and it looks like it'll be an amazing concert. Here's hoping nobody rips anything.

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