Tuesday, July 25, 2023


It is not everytime that you get to hear a band that is totally perfect.  Arranmore had a performance at the Schaumburg Town Square Library and all those present enjoyed the old songs which had an Irish touch to it.  The group takes its name from an island on the northwest coast of Ireland.
All the members of the band were in perfect sync and Brian (the band leader) kept it flowing smoothly.
The ambiance too was perfect, I mean I would rather listen to a band playing in open air like this, than in a closed hall.
It was poetic justice that the swan chose to swim into the frame while filming Kirk Rende on the keyboard (I am not sure if it was a swan or a Canada goose)
Rich Prezioso plays with such ease, I like his "When the last leaves fall" by Small Potatoes. If you listen to the words, it is so meaningful.
The mandolin speaks on its own and I waited for Dave to pick up his mandolin more often (not that he was bad with the guitar)
I specifically liked the song Wild Rover, where the audience were made to participate and they responded equally well with their synchronised clap
I liked the subtle joke made by Brian mentioning Jack performing in front of Mount Rushmore, and Jack accepted the joke with the humble smile of his. (I have added it in the video)
All the songs in the video are clipped to make space to fit in more songs.
  Hope to catch them again sometime in the future on their next performance.

Monday, July 10, 2023

Lake Michigan

Happened to be at St Joseph beach during the eve of July 4th and saw some of the tourists getting ready to witness the fireworks.
The Amtrak runs very close to the beach and I did not know that there was a station at St Joseph.
Love lighthouses and some of the stories behind them.
At this location there were two lighthouses close to each other and the second one is equally good.
Sometimes the angle of the light makes a lot of difference. I like the silhouette better even though the man fishing from the boat is the same in both the pictures above and below.
I showed the above picture to the guy in the boat and he laughed saying "but there is no fish in the picture"
Talking of fish, we did see one guy actually catch a big one. Looks like a Drum.
These lighthouses have been here for more than a century. The Michigan Lake is so vast that at times you feel that you are looking out into the ocean. Most of the time the waters are calm and you may see a lone paddler moving about
While we were there we did not miss a chance to get some cups of Caramel from Kilwins.
A small video clip captured at Kilwins got converted to an insta reel.
I love that 1964 song by Chuck Berry attached to the Instagram.
About an hour's drive up north from this place is a Dutch village where you get to see and learn about Dutch culture.
Among other things that we saw was a shoe (Klompen) making factory and a Dutch dance display.
The Dutch dance display was entertaining as well as informative. The Gouden Engel (organ) that played in the background was made in Belgium and later transported to the Netherlands. The fact that it weighed more than 2000 pounds makes it one of the heaviest street organs in the Netherlands.
All those who danced were students from the nearby university. There were some funny moments while they danced, like one of the boy's shoes went flying and was later retrieved from the canal.
Maybe he didn't wear enough socks (they wore anything between 5 to10 pairs of socks)
Later they invited the audience to join the dance which was an opportunity to learn a few steps.
While watching the video I had my doubts. Did he deliberately fling the shoe?