Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Jacksonville Jazz, Tennis, and Beryl

I had an interesting and varied Memorial Day weekend.  I am a big fan of jazz and have managed to find another aficionado who lives in Orlando, so we decided that we would meet up at the Jacksonville Jazz Festival, which is in the northeast of Florida, along with our wives, who are also online buddies.

There was some discussion over which day we should meet – should it be Friday (Sonny Rollins headlining) or Sunday (Chick Corea)?  Saturday was out of the question as I had my final tennis match of the season (see below).  Anyway, we eventually settled for a Friday meet up.

The Jacksonville event is actually one of the biggest jazz festivals in the US.  It takes place outdoors and the events are free.  The city is actually pretty attractive with the centre blocked off to motor traffic (unlike in Europe where pedestrians have gradually gained the upper hand, US city centres still seem generally to be very much dominated by cars).

Me fraternising with a local!

My friend and fellow jazz fan, Chris drinking cider in the Irish bar.  Somewhat surreally we were surrounded by Scottish football fans who were there to watch the game against the USA the following evening.  The Scots went on to lose 5-1!  As an Englishman, I am neutral when it comes to such a match, although I have to add that the Scots wouldn’t spare the mirth were England get thrashed by the US in a similar fashion!

The Just Jazz Quartet – Probably the best jazz quartet that I’ve ever seen with 5 players in it!


The following day (Saturday) my tennis team played our final round of matches of the Spring league.  It was calculated that we only needed to win one out of the three final contests to win the league on points.  Alas, despite two of the contests being decided by tie-breakers (including my own), we lost all three and so had to settle for second place.  So we won’t be going to the special USTA tournament weekend at Daytona Beach now, it seems! 

Me serving

My tennis partner: Bobby
Our opponents (boo! hiss!)


After all the excitement of Friday and Saturday, Sunday and Monday ended up being relatively quiet days for us, as Tropical Storm Beryl swept in and dumped bucketfuls of rain across northeast Florida (the deluge is still going on as I write).

The final day of the Jacksonville Jazz Festival had to be cancelled because of the weather – so choosing Friday to meet up now seems like it was a very good decision.


  1. Yes, we had fun. You didn't mention our 5 mile hike at San Felasco, during which is poured and we got soaked. But in true soldiering-on fashion, we kept going right to the very end. :-)

    1. Yes, that was the start of the rain and it's been raining ever since! At least the rain is kind of warm in Florida! :-)