DULUTH, MINNESOTA - July 16-23, 2006

Kathy and I traveled to Duluth to do supertitles for the Duluth Festival Opera's production of MadameButterfly. We were graciously hosted by Kay and Walt Gower who wined us and dined us and in general made us feel like members of the family. Walt, a retired orthopedist, was very intersted in all sorts of intellectual pursuits, including mathematics, and helped me compute my Erdos number (3).

One day Walt took us on a trip along the beautiful northern shore of Lake Superior. The first view is from the hills overlooking the city. (Duluth is a long, narrow city built between the lakeshore and a row of hills.)

The second view is further north, along the shore:

Kathy and Walt:

We made our way north as far as the town of Two Harbors where we saw a freighter leaving one of the harbors and viewed the lighthouse from the distance:

For the Saturday night show, Walt's sister Marty and her husband came to see the show and spend the night. The Gower's friend Thomas also came. We all had dinner together berfore the show, although I couldn't enjoy any of the wine Walt was decanting:

Kay, a wonderful cook, kept us extremely well-fed, and also supplied loads of cookies for backstage at rehearsals. Here she is preparing the Saturday-night dinner:

Here are Marty and Thomas:

And Marty's husband:

The Gower's cat Daniel was ever-present:

He took a real liking to us, to the extent of camping out on our suitcase, presumably trying to keep us from leaving:

We worked with a lot of old friends at the opera, including tenor Dean Anthony (Goro):

Also tenor Marcus McConico (Pinkerton);

Our old friend Craig Fields was the director. Here he is with his sons, Robbie and Chris. (Chris is a senior at VMI and is planning on law school after graduation. He stands first in his class, incidentally.)

In the next picture the three Fields' were joined by Craig's father-in-law who came in for the show:

Yunah Lee was our Butterfly. She sang the same role in Roanoke a few years ago when we also did the supertitles. Here she is with Kathy:

Kathy and I also had time for a little sightseeing. We took a boat trip that went out through this peculiar drawbridge into Lake Superior:

(The roadway rises vertically to allow ships to pass.) There is also a pedestrian drawbridge near the boat dock where we boarded for our sightseeing trip:

The two cities of Duluth and Superior, Wisconsin, share one harbor with two entrances. The Superior entrance, to the east, is a natural entrance. The Duluth entrance, over which the automobile drawbridge crosses, is a canal.  Many large ships load at this harbor, carrying cargo including coal and iron ore to the eastern Great Lakes:

Here is a view of Duluth from the harbor. The narrowness of the city is evident here:

The EPA is continually monitoring possible water pollution. They have their own yacht:

Finally, the boat trip took us right by the DECC, the name of the auditorium where the opera was presented:

In case anyone is wondering, the opera was very successful. The singing was excellent, as was the orchestral playing, and the large crowds were highly enthusiastic, giving standing ovations both nights.