• Upcoming trips

    13-23 January, 2018 Cruise out of New York around the Caribbean on the Norwegian Gem. Note : this trip has been cancelled altogether because of the damage caused by the hurricanes to the Caribbean islands.

    October 31st - 11 November. Caribbean cruise to break up the winter. Note: The itinerary has not yet been determined owing to the havoc wreaked by the hurricanes.
  • theatre and Concerrts

    October 8 Went to BAM, for the first time since Ethel died, to hear a wonderful modern opera composed and written by Matthew Aucoin called “Crossing”. It is based on Walt Whitman’s experience and the libretto is largely taken from his poetry.

    The story is multi-themed, as modern plays tend to be; the first is a harrowing anti war depiction of the suffering wounded seen through Whitman’s eyes when he volunteered as a nurse during the American civil war; the second is Slavery and its effect upon a run-away slave who fights on the Union side; the third is treachery portrayed by a guilt-laden deserter who spies for the South. And forth, inevitably these days, is the (entirely fictional) homosexual one.

    The powerful music fits the story perfectly and the voices of the lead singers and the chorus is magnificent; Rod Gilfry, bass-baritone, sings the part of Walt Whitman, Alexander Lewis plays John Wormley, the deserter, and Davone Tines, whose baritone reminded me, distinctly, of the sound of the legendary Paul Robeson.  Both Christine and I were extremely moved by the work. We newly discovered Walt Whitman’s poetry, too.

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Art Class aboard the Queen Mary 2

As is my wont, one of the first things  I did aboard the QM2 was to sign up for the Watercolour class. I like taking classes because they give me the discipline to put that first nervous stroke on the paper. This is the third time on this ship so I know exactly where to go. The class, on this voyage, was run with a firm hand but with great good humour by Louise.


Louise made everyone in her group, beginners as well as those with previous experience, happy to be in the class. It was a lively group! The images which follow were taken indoors so the White Balance is not perfect.

First exercise

Second exercise - monotone rendering


The St. Thomas Windmill - Homework

Island scene




Homework - I put up a picture of this house in my previous post



4 Responses

  1. Fabulous artwork, Ben! Not surprising, of course.

    • Bonnie. Thank you. I feel that I am beginning to paint with more surety and improving skill as I practice. I use a 9″ x 12″ block by default now and I would like you to see the original works–The photographs flatten their character considerably. Ben

  2. Beautiful!!

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