My Alma Mater, Part 2

IU Auditorium on the Indiana University campus -
IU Auditorium on the Indiana University campus –

By Mary Anna Violi | @Mary Anna Violi 

On Friday evening, we dined with my nephew Daniel.  Like my daughter, his cousin, he too will graduate next month from Indiana University Bloomington, my alma mater.  The focus of the Mom’s Weekend at my daughter’s sorority was mothers and daughters, but Daniel is dear to my heart.  It would have been unfathomable to not break bread with him while I was on the campus!  After all, we are Italians, and alla famiglia is our motto.

It was, therefore, incumbent upon us to dine at Puccini’s, our favorite Italian restaurant on 4th Street [Giacomo Puccini happens to be my favorite Italian opera composer].  This particular street is home to various culinary offerings from around the world:  Thai, Italian, Turkish, Indian, and Chinese, to name a few. At Puccini’s the three of us feasted on bruchetta, calamari, three different pasta entrees, washed it all down with vino rosso, and then shared tiramisu over coffee.

And then we went to the opera.  Earlier that Friday morning, I had purchased tickets for us. Since it was the first Friday of the month performance, we could claim any seat in the house we wanted.  Daniel was wild to sit in a box seat.  Consequently, we arrived as soon as the doors opened so that he and his cousin could scramble up the flights of stairs to the box seating. As a former voice major, I still get thrills every time I set foot in the Musical Arts Center, the MAC as it is affectionately known.  Giuseppe Verdi’s opera Falstaff was premiering that night.  The IU School of Music is renowned around the world.  Its operas promise the audience extraordinary singers, enchanting sets, lighting, and costumes, and brilliant orchestras.  This first Friday performance of Falstaff did not disappoint.  Though not on my top five list of favorite operas [remember that I mentioned I am a Puccini opera aficionado?], the humor and witty staging of this performance held my attention throughout the nearly four-hour performance.  It captivated Anjelica and Daniel too.

In the cool of the night we strolled back to the car, weary, but full of conversation about the magical operatic event.  We did not wish to relinquish the opera, for we three were aware that next year would be different:  my daughter in graduate school in another city; my nephew starting his new job in yet another state.  For the past four years, I have had the inexpressible joy of sharing my alma mater with my daughter and with my nephew.  Our iPhone photos may document particular moments for us, but how I shall miss their undergraduate years.

Ciao for now.

One thought on “My Alma Mater, Part 2

  1. Cathy Schlesinger

    Enjoyed your two posts about Bloomington and could readily identify with your bittersweet thoughts as Anjelica moves on to the next phase of her life. I recall some of the same feelings as Stephan completed college.

    Let me assure you that things will only get better as she matures and makes a full life for herself! I am amazed on a daily basis how much I continue to enjoy Stephan, Leslie and now their two fabulous children. I am certain the same will happen to you. We were both blessed with a child rather late in the game, and the blessings only continue to multiply! How very fortunate we are.

    I just came home from an evening of babysitting, smelling of urine and spit up…with a wealth of dog hair all over my black slacks. Couldn’t have had a nicer night…really!!! Nancy and Mimi are both enjoying the exotic joys of Thailand right now, so if you have higher aspirations than me that is also something to look forward to!

    Where do you think Anjelica ‘land” for law school?

    Come see me!


    On Wed, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:03 PM, Mary Anna Violi’s tangledpasta wrote:

    > ** > Mary Anna Violi’s tangledpasta posted: ” By Mary Anna Violi | @Mary > Anna Violi On Friday evening, we dined with my nephew Daniel. Like my > daughter, his cousin, he too will graduate next month from Indiana > University Bloomington, my alma mater. The focus of the Moms Weekend at > my daugh”

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