Went to see Samuel Ramey perform tonight at the SF Opera House. He's brilliant and wonderful, and I can't really articulate why: it's very difficult for me to judge opera voices, it's not something I have a lot of experience with. He has a great theatrical sense, and really acts, and gives the performance passion and intensity, which I guess is not guaranteed from anyone with just a beautiful voice. And he's really nice and interesting to look at, even from the (considerable) distance where we were sitting.
I went to the bonsai exhibition yesterday, which was fun, if long (I stayed to see if I won raffle or door prizes). Amazing stuff: there's nothing horticulturally special about bonsai plants except that they can survive in small pots. They're the same species as full-size plants and (I understand) can live just as long, so collectors will have 100-year old junipers or whatever. One display at the exhibition had a couple dozen tiny little pots, an inch or two wide, with miniaturized flowers and trees. On a larger scale people created entire landscapes about a foot wide.
In the end I went cheap and do-it-yourself, and bought two maple saplings and a pot for them, figuring they would remind me of the Northeast. (To bonsai something, you have to separate and prune the roots to get it into a smaller pot, and then you keep pruning back the plant itself. I'm not sure how I know this; I'm pretty sure I saw it on TV once. I'm not getting my hopes up too high that I'll be able to keep these trees alive, but if they die I'll still have a pot afterward.)
Still, I want one of these.