My Christmas letter was such a hit I am including it here:
This is my first full year of retirement, and it’s been rough. Month by month:
January: I saw the Met simulcasts of I Puritani and The First Emperor in Sacramento. Went to Europe, and had a panic attack in the autograph line of famous opera singer, thereby topping my already pitiful record in that regard. Went to Venice and Rome, places I love, to recover.
February: I went to Vienna and saw a few operas. Vienna is looking pretty nice these days. I went on an art tour of Los Angeles with Elderhostel where I also saw Mahagonny at the LA opera. I saw the simulcast of Eugene Onegin in Portland. I finally sold my house.
March: I drove across the US from coast to coast, spending four days in Albuquerque in order to see the simulcast of Barber of Seville. I don’t think I’ve done this since I was in my twenties.
April: I moved into an apartment in Sacramento and had my furniture moved here. Felt like shit and went into a funk that lasted for months.
May: Summer opera started.
June: Paris Hilton was in jail.
July: I went on my second Elderhostel to the Santa Fe opera. Visited the Ds in Albuquerque. I like New Mexico a lot. Maybe I’ll move there.
August: Went to Glimmerglass opera in upstate New York and had a lot of fun. Nobody famous sings there, but it was great anyway. I was interviewed by a reporter in Portugal about my series on sexiest opera singers. This was a big ego boost. Visited D in DC. It was wonderful to see the babies.
September: I started doing diabetes testing and found out what a bad job I was doing.
October: Changed diet and began losing weight. Bought ipod.
November: Watch Jag, Matlock and Star Trek Voyager all day and eat salad. Am acquiring a taste for Hotel Babylon. Know exactly who the iron chefs are and what they cook, though none of it is anything I can eat. I had Thanksgiving with J in Portland and lost a pound and a half. When you only eat salad it doesn’t matter what season it is. Bought digital camera.
December: Going to London for 2 weeks. This will cost a ton of money since the dollar is now incredibly low. It’s only money. I love London, but will not be able to eat any French fries. P.S. French fries weren't so good in the hotel so this was not that hard.
Happy New Year.
John Brancy in free recital at Governor's Park
2 hours ago