Friday, February 29, 2008

'I guess that's why they call it the blues...'

So, here are the postcards for those who are feeling we have not been good on the whole mailing home thing. Please read and enjoy.

Usual stuff; 'Having a good time, wish you were here, weather mixed' !!

Today has been a slightly less pressured day at CSW. Fiona headed for the UN for a good meeting with UNIFEM on securing women's housing and property rights when they are affected by HIV/AIDS.

The sessions tomorrow pick up again on gender architecture, issues surrounding rights for widows, and African land issues.

The week has been quite pressured, and yesterday in particular had covered a large amount of harrowing information, so the slight 'down day' has come at a good moment. As the trip has been voluntary, and funded independently by each of us, it has been nice to have a bit of NY playtime!

Pauline and Eve decided to investigate the 'other side' of the American economy by travelling on the Staten Island Ferry over to a retail park north of the island. The Ferry now goes from a spectacular new terminal at Battery Park, but is still a free service. The terminal has some glamorous aquariums to watch while you await your ferry (sponsored by Staten Island Zoo) and we snapped a picture of the 'Fiona Fish' - so named today because as you know Fiona loves her turquoise!

Staten is a very different place to the city, even though it is a mere 20 minute ferry ride away. The population in this one NYC Borough is 600,000, which has doubled in less than 20 years, (total City population for the 5 Boroughs is 8.2 million) with very little having been done to add to the infrastructure. Although mainly a dormitory for the city, the quality of life for people on the island has deteriorated in part because of this.

We had a reason for heading to this particular place - a craft emporium called JoAnn that specialises in quilting fabrics and equipment, one of Mrs L's hobbies, but it gave us an opportunity to see a very different side of New York.

And for those of you who have been reading this blog with bated breath THE CONCERT WAS FANTASTIC!!!

Messrs Clapton and Winwood were stunning. Performing with a three-piece band that included Willie Weeks (bass), Chris Stainton (keyboards) and Ian Thomas (drums), the duo traded vocals and instrumentals with well-practiced ease. Clapton's solos in Traffic's "Pearly Queen" and "Dear Mr. Fantasy", Winwood's keyboard work and amazing vocals (for an old bloke!) made songs as Jimi Hendrix's "Little Wing" and Clapton's "Tell the Truth" brilliant. Winwood strapped on a guitar for most of the Blind Faith songs, as well as numbers including the rollicking "Low Down".

Each star also delivered one solo number, with Clapton performing an acoustic version of "Ramblin' on My Mind" and Winwood did a great version of "Georgia on My Mind".

Of course, the Blind Faith classics including "Had to Cry Today", "Presence of the Lord" and "Can't Find My Way Home" got the biggest cheers, but Clapton pop hits as "Forever Man" and "After Midnight" came close.

We stomped, we whistled, we screamed a bit, we clapped, we smelt the wacky baccy coming from the seats behind(!) and we had a very good time. Hopefully we will get the video clips up tomorrow.

So that's about it for todays adventures. Some photos of things we have done......


Niki Molnar said...

...the duo traded vocals and instrumentals with well-practiced ease...

Who's the aspiring NME reviewer in the party?

I think we should be told.

greyfloozy said...

I read the review in a N Y paper -they enjoyed it too!!

Love the photos - hope you saved that Sec.General nameplate for someone?

Postcards not bad!